I have been trying to figure this out for quite some time now.
Born from Central American parents but completely drenched in Mexican culture and art, I felt lost at times. Being Latina in the movies means wearing high heels, hoop earrings, looking super sexy and curvy, and speaking Spanglish, but there is a lot more behind it.
I have been inspired by the life in Los Angeles, of all these Latin cultures coming together and making the most out of their present situations. The art of so many talented photographers, writers, painters, and musicians has given me a sense of pride, a newfound identity that I can pass on to my future family.
I don't think that just because I am Central American means that I can't fully embrace the art of Frida or the music of Selena or be speechless at the sight of a Chicano artist's mural or brought to tears by a novel by Laura Esquivel.
I have finally realized that being Latina is not about where you are from but about the entire culture behind it. I can have tacos on Saturday, then pupusas on Sunday ~ this is why I love being Latina in Los Angeles!
Melissa Renee Cerda:
Born and raised in Los Angeles then the San Fernando Valley from Central American parents. I am an amateur photographer learning the ropes in documentary photography in Los Angeles. Fascinated with all forms of art. Author's website Email the author