Latino Life: Selena Muralist Gets Creative in Fresno

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The Selena mural in Southeast Fresno is an Instagram favorite! The man behind the popular mural wants to paint one hundred murals to improve parts of Fresno.

The Selena mural in Southeast Fresno is an Instagram favorite! The man behind the popular mural wants to paint one hundred murals to improve parts of Fresno.

He sold his drawings of Superman for twenty-five cents when he was a kid and was given the nickname "Super."

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"Super" cannot leap tall buildings in a single bound, but he's leaving his mark on buildings just the same as he uses his skills to beautify parts of Fresno.

With paint and a passion for creativity, Omar Huerta, or "Super" is giving Belmont Avenue a boost in Southeast Fresno.

"I feel like I'm spreading the love where it needs to be and putting the paint where it needs to," said Super.

He and his friend Midas are putting the finishing touches on their latest mural depicting the Virgen de Guadalupe.

Super says, "We all have moms out there, and so I wanted to touch every one of them's heart. This is the Virgin Mary, the mother of all mothers."

Super admits, he was a tagger but now chooses to use his artistic skills to leave a lasting and more visually appealing mark in the city.

He has created eleven murals along Belmont Avenue from Frieda Kahlo to Biggie Smalls. His work hasn't gone unnoticed.

Maria Suarez is a Fresno mother. Through a translator, she says, "I like it. I like it because I'm a believer. It's beautiful. I hope they put more images on buildings."

His Selena mural on Ventura avenue became an Instagram favorite and was listed among the top Selena murals in the country by HipLatina, a digital lifestyle publication.

The Selena mural got a lot of attention. It went viral on Twitter; I don't personally have a twitter. It went viral, I got a lot of feedback from it, " said Super.

Super has donated murals and also makes money. The owner of the Great American Car Wash commissioned him to create murals saluting veterans, law enforcement, and the American Dream.

A.J. Rassamni said, "On a weekly basis we have people stop here to take pictures. Family members come on a regular basis too. They travel from distances just to come over here."

Angels are in the hallway, a conquistador in the waiting area.

Rassamni says, " We have a lot of customers who say wow you're waiting area looks a lot nicer than my house!"

Tattoo art came later in life after Super was asked to create a mural at a tattoo shop.

He found a new canvas, the human kind.

"Nobody in my family has tattoos; I am the only one. They call me Manchitas which in English would be stained," Super said.

He cautions tattoos are not for everyone and can lead to judgment.

"Have I been seen as a gang member, many times. I'm not one. That's not my cup of tea or anything like that. I'm okay with whatever people have to say. At the end of the day talk to the book before you judge it."

Super wants to create 100 murals to cover up blight. He says kids who tag should have a place to express themselves positively and legally.

"If we don't have any places for them to spread their art, then we're always going to get the vandalism side. I feel like it's my job in this way to show kids hey man just hang on tough. There are places where you can go put something together ask the owner, get permission, get your spray cans, get sponsors. Have the owner help you, and you can actually sit there and do a mural," Super said.

Finding that outlet can be life-changing.

Super adds, " I'm doing the right thing. I'm doing the right thing, and I'm going the right way about it."

Whether it's on paper or a 30-foot wall, we all need space to let imagination grow.

"It becomes your mental corner. It's how you breathe," said Super.

Omar "Super" Huerta Murals in Fresno
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