Picture Their Hearts

A series of illustrations for Dionisia Morales’s poignant personal essay about growing up with a white mother and a black father in 1960’s America, published in Oregon Humanities magazine’s Spring 2013 issue (“Skin”).


Art director Jen Wick wanted a graphic novel look that felt personal but didn’t show specific faces, and matched the essay’s theme of photographic image vs. personal memory.


Family photo albums played a major role in the essay, particularly the album that included pictures from her parents’ honeymoon.



Morales also described the surreal comparison of raising her own children in so-called “post-racial” America, and their nonplussed reaction to the contentious 2008 presidential election.



Another major theme was her mother’s continuing reluctance to talk about the obstacles they faced in the family’s past.