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Meet Brayan – the video

A few months ago I wrote a story about meeting Brayan, a young kid at risk for HD from Barranquitas, Venezuela (see blog post “Reflections on instilling a sense of hope”). Together with colleagues Matt Rota ( and Nicanor Cardeñosa, we put together a narrated illustrated story of that encounter.

You can see the video here, and the full illustration below.

There are many kids like Brayan living in these towns that really need your help. We recently started an educational program to teach kids like Brayan how to read and write. Education is Hope. Education is Future. Help us by donating to this program. Click Donate!

About Matt Rota

My goal with the work I do in illustration in general is to help highlight and humanize issues that cause or relate to peoples struggles and suffering within communities that may not have or resources to reach a wider audience. Illustration has the ability to be immediately impactful, and pull peoples attention into a topic they may otherwise ignore or not be aware of.

The work Factor-H does is immensely important, not only in helping the communities within Venezuela, but also by conducting work that will have a global impact in helping to treat Huntington’s disease. 

A graduate of The Maryland Institute College of Art’s General Fine Arts program and the School of Visual Art’s MFA Visual Essay program, Matt Rota is an illustrator, author and instructor. He’s spent the past 15 years working with clients in print and online including the New York Times, the New Yorker, Penguin Books, The LA Times, The Washington Post, Foreign Policy, The New Republic, Smithsonian, Variety, Buzzfeed, and many others. His illustrations focus primarily on global politics, criminal justice, social inequality, immigration and poverty. His work in illustration has been recognized by several industry organizations including Communication Arts, Spectrum, 3X3 Magazine and The Society of Illustrators, where he has won two silver medals, one for his work on the documentary Silent Truth, a documentary on the threat of violence towards women in the U.S. Military, another for a series of drawings with ProPublica on Fire Stone Tires and the Liberian Genocide.

His work has been featured in Artists Magazine, Drawing Magazine, Illusive anthology of contemporary illustration, and the Figure Artists Handbook by Rob Zeller. Over the past ten years he has taught illustration at the Maryland Institute College of Art and The School of Visual Arts. Matt has written two books on drawing, Pencil Arts Workshop, and The Art of Ballpoint. Matt also has an extensive exhibition career, a body of work centered on panoramic pen and ink landscapes that smash history together with current events and focus on themes of environmental degradation and exploitation. This work has been exhibited in in group shows and solo exhibitions in galleries internationally. Additionally Matt is serving on the board of directors at the New York Artists Equity Association.

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