Artist Spotlight: Angelica Marie Soto

Recently, JAC got the chance to speak with Angelica Marie Soto, an artist and member of JAC’s network. Continue reading to learn more about Angelica’s relationship with art, what inspires her work, and to view some of her work.

Angelica Marie Soto has always been an artist. Growing up the youngest of five siblings, Angelica’s family made sure her artistic talents never went unnoticed or discouraged. “When my mother would leave me with my nanny Licha she would put me and my nephew in a desk and have drawing contests and I would win and that’s how we found out I could paint/draw,” Angelica writes. “I grew up spoiled and talented.” 

Good/Bad Girl

From then on, art continued to be a source of empowerment and a means of connecting to loved ones in Angelica’s life. To this day, Angelica is a visual artist, drawing and painting scenes of peace and beauty in nature as well as strong feminine portraits.

Following her incarceration, artistic expression has indelibly shaped Angelica’s means of communication and connection. Producing art for herself and others, Angelica draws inspiration from other people’s suggestions before threading her own creative visions through the original idea.

Describing her creative practice, Angelica explains that the medium in which she currently works is watercolor, though she plans to start working in acrylics “soon.” This versatility and exploration of mediums is certainly throughout Angelica’s various projects. Working with materials such as colored pencils and pen, Angelica deftly moves between both monochromatic and bright, bold polychromatic color schemes.


For Angelica, her artistic craft is a means to communicate, allowing her to share her creative visions and her innermost self with her community and family. She writes, “My fans inspire me to make more art and my family. Art makes me who I am. People!”

Art has also provided Angelica with a safe space in which she’s able to reconcile emotional tumult.

“When I have problems or [I’m] stressed I pick up my brush and paint. It’s my meditation and heals me in ways that no one would understand, [it’s] therapeutic.”


The tranquility that Angelica finds through her creative process certainly manifests in her art; impressionistic snapshots of naturalistic scenes and tenderly painted flora and fauna inhabit many of her works. In her pastoral landscape, “Freedom,” Angelica calls the audience to consider their relationship to the title itself, offering her own vision of freedom by placing viewers in a lush open field with no superimposed barriers or limitations. All that rests between the bright sky and the earth are serenely depicted flora and fauna.

While Angelica bears an obvious affinity for the natural world, her artistry goes beyond traditional landscapes and portraiture. It is evident that Angelica retains an evergreen curiosity for the world, incorporating an abundance of joy, heart, and play into her work. Deliberately juxtaposing striking colors and imaginatively incorporating surrealistic traits, Angelica allows a sense of whimsicality to furnish her art. 

Untitled (Cat With Feathers)

The beings depicted by Angelica are often allegorical, representing parallels she sees in herself, or in those around her. A black horse in her drawing “Black Beauty” represents her feeling of being the “black sheep in her family.” In her written description of her piece, “Leader,” Angelica details, “The reason of me drawing a wolf is because I consider myself as a leader. No matter what the consequences I face in life I manage to still move forward.”

Black Beauty

Alongside these parallels, themes of perseverance and positivity flourish in Angelica’s work. Her portrait “Unbreakable” places viewers directly opposite a masked figure adorned in jewelry with an expression which, upon first glance, lacks discernible emotion. The piece, created using a pencil, pen, and shading bar, draws attention to the deliberately detailed features of the woman.


It is after this description that Angelica’s project falls into place, leaving viewers to reconsider the interiority of the individual depicted in the piece, to look beyond their initial impressions, and to think about the fortitude required to continue facing the world head-on amid the most oppressive of circumstances. 

Even more explicitly crystallizing her relentless commitment to strength and optimism is her piece, “Nothing is impossible,” which depicts a vibrant bouquet of flowers held up by the frame of a vase.

“I created “Nothing is impossible” because it’s a true statement,” Angelica states, “We all can do what we put our minds to.”

Nothing is Impossible

To view more of Angelica’s work see her portfolio here.

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