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About Us

Artists Ink is a group of multi-dimensional artists that work in fields of Film, Photography, Creative Writing, Performing Arts, Music, Visual Arts, Web Design and more.\r\n\r\n

The goal is to create a network of artists with-in our community that share the same love, passion and appreciation for the arts and create works that are not only impactful but provide a voice to the artistic culture in our community of all kinds.

  • sprout-image

    2012 - 2013

    Humble Beginnings

    In the fall of October 2012, a small idea was planted in our Founders mind. To create a project that inspired and uplifted the community. After much research and thinking, it was time to enlist the the help of former classmates and local artists. In January 2013 Artists Ink had it first official meeting.

  • group picture of students

    MAY 2013

    First Class

    Students from high schools through out Salinas joined us for our very first class for "A Tree in the Valley" and began the journey of developing their art and collaboratively creating a feature length film. Students attended workshops and meetings for an entire year to complete this project.

  • Fox theatre Salinas

    APRIL 2014

    ATV Premieres

    At last, all the hard work, love, and dedication paid off! "A Tree in the Valley" premieres to a sold out crowd at the Fox Theatre in old town Salinas CA.

  • Arms reaching high

    JUNE 2015

    Como La Tiera

    A special Collaboration between Counterpulse (a San Francisco based organization) and Artists Ink brought this project to the Salinas Valley. Encouraging understanding, empathy and a shift in value for women and mother Earth.

  • June 2016

    The Bigger Picture

    A performance and creative writing piece that aimed to “combat the rising epidemic of Type 2 Diabetes by empowering youth to change the conversation about the disease.” This collaboration was between Artists Ink and Youth Speaks (an organization based out of Oakland, CA.).

  • November 2016

    Dia de los Muertos

    A Festival that celebrated and honored the Cultural heritage of our community; Dia De Los Muertos incorporated community workshops facilitated by our Creative Leaders and Student Artists based on what they learn from El Teatro Campesino. Theatrical Performances were held by BAKTUN 12 and ACFA. This event was held at El Teatro Campesino and at the ACFA Facility.

  • Currently

    Salinas Movement Project

    This project is completely developed to allow students to create their own production using a variety of art disciplines. The goal is to empower Salinas youth to recognize the strength of their voice and express it through art that in turn creates positive change in their community.

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Learn more about our recent projects.

A tree in the valley

A Tree in the Valley

como la tierra

Como La Tierra

Our Amazing Team

Emily Morales

As a Performing Artist, Writer and Director raised in the Salinas Valley, Emily Morales has been active in the arts for the past 16 years. As the founder of "Artists Ink", Emily has directed and produced projects such as; the feature film "A Tree in the Valley", and more recently, a women's project "Como La Tierra". Throughout her career Emily has had the privilege of working with great local companies such as El Teatro Campesino, The Western Stage, Alisal Center for Fine Arts, The National Steinbeck Center, CHISPA, the Arts Council for Monterey County and more. Presently, her energy and passion for the arts has become focused on cultivating art that moves and developing young artists with the strong belief in the power of art and its ability to break down barriers and bring communities together.

Carlos Cortez "Qiensave"

Carlos Cortez is a local multi disciplinary that has worked with El Teatro Campesino for Three seasons. He started at El Teatro in La Virgen del Tepeyac as El Fraile las Casas, Lupe in 7,8ight,9, and Bartolo in La Pastorela He has also appeared in various Western Stage productions such as Zootsuit, Luna, Mexican Christmas carol, September Shoes, Sunsets and Margaritas, Skin of our teeth, and many more. Carlos is also a singer songwriter for the band Qiensave his music can be found on line.

Eduardo Esparza

Eduardo Esparza, battle born then raised in Salinas; Eduardo attended and graduated from Alisal High School then later received his Associates Degree in Arts at Hartnell College soon after took his talents to both California State University of Los Angeles and Long Beach where his artistic talents took him to new heights in advancing his already fluent expertise in illustrative creativity. Having taken a break from acting not to mention away from theater -until recently taking part in its new play The Valley of the Heart by Luis Valdez and Mi Abuelito Fue Brazero by Luis ‘Xago’ Juarez- he was blessed to get the opportunity to continue his education at CSUMB where he has talents evolved into Graphic Design and majoring in Communication Design. Overall he's found he's grown into an orgullo multifaceted-apprentice of the arts, not to mention all in all coming from a gifted area of the country I love to call my home, East Salinas.

Dante Carballo

Dante is a multi-talented artist, who has a background of over 10 years in theatrical and musical experience. His work is largely in underscoring music and sound editing. Dante studied musical composition at Hartnell College. He has been studying piano since the age of 11 and the guitar since the age 14. Dante has worked in various productions, performing and composing with companies such as, El Teatro Campesino, collaborating in the musical compositions of shows such "The Fascinatrix". He was the Musical Director for Watsonville High School's production of "Blood Wedding" and has performed for the "Universidad Autónoma de Guadalajara". He also studied in Spain as a chef and is now a "Foods and Beverages Professional Associate". Dante is excited to take the next step in his diverse career, working with "Artists Ink." and contributing to his community with a project just as multi-dimensional as he is.

Daniel Ibarra

Daniel Ibarra is a life long resident of Salinas California. For the past 5 year he has pursued his interest in Graphic Design and has created logos, T-shirt designs, informational brochures, flyers and websites for different non-profit organizations, churches, and politicians in his community. He is an experienced drummer and is excited to share his love of the arts with a younger generation. Currently he is a Computer Science student at California State University Monterey Bay and is a freelance Web Design and Graphic Design artist.

Eduardo Velasquez

Eduardo Velasquez is currently a student at Hartnell College studying Sociology. His goal is to become an educator and local business/community leader of his hometown Salinas. He takes philosophy from his education in Sociology, where he aims to understand why our communities have the problems that they do, but most importantly, what we can do about it. He uses creative writing in all it’s forms to add commentary to current social and political on goings, and has been writing as well as performing slam poetry since High School. Eduardo has worked directly with the Salinas Public Libraries and the Steinbeck Center to create the City of Letters Slam: a unique fusion of a poetry slam/open mic.He has also worked w/ the Hartnell College Sociology Club as V.P. for Spring of 2016 and President for Fall of 2016, in tackling and raising awareness of local social issues such as: fracking, homelessness, youth violence, and youth development; and brought projects to the community such as a Mayoral Debate between the 2 candidates during the latest 2016 Mayor race in Salinas, and a monthly Open Mic series which takes place at Hartnell College titled: Hartnell Throwdown Sessions. Eduardo continues his work in the community and hopes to learn and experience as much as possible so that he may one day be able to contribute and share his knowledge to the younger generation.

Emily Morales

Emily Morales

Performing Arts and Creative Writing

Carlos Cortez "Qiensave"

Carlos Cortez "Qiensave"

Performing Arts, Film and Music

Eduardo Esparza

Eduardo Esparza

Graphic Design

Dante Carballo

Dante Carballo

Music & Audio Engineer

Daniel Ibarra

Daniel Ibarra

Web Design & Development

Eduardo Velasquez

Eduardo Velasquez

Creative Writing

We are always searching for artists to collaborate with and help provide them with exposure, support, and the resources to share their art and inspires our community.

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We really want to hear from you!