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Plastic Free July

Pela Pride - Behind The Artists

Pela Pride - Behind The Artists

Here at Pela, we believe that our phone cases can be an empowering medium in support of people AND the planet. The art featured on our plant-based cases is intentionally curated and beautifully designed. We want to share the stories of the artists behind our collections with you! 

For our latest collection release, in celebration of Pride, we collaborated with four LGBTQIA2S+ artists and activists. Our goal at Pela goal is to cultivate a strong sense of community, creativity, consciousness, and courage to guide us in our mission to create a waste-free world. This Pride, we're honoring the LGBTQIA2S+ community, who have always been at the forefront of intersectional environmentalism. These are the four artists and the inspiration behind their designs.

1. Pattie Gonia (she/they)

Design | Sounds Gay

How they will be celebrating Pride | “Getting outside, by spending time post-vaccination with my queer friends and by supporting other queer creators and artists.” 

For our Pride campaign, we teamed up with intersectional environmentalist and drag queen Pattie Gonia! Pattie Gonia is a true advocate for inclusivity and diversity in the outdoors. Pattie’s design for this collection embodies their love for all things that are satirical, funny and, quirky. To Pattie, the phone case is the perfect accessory for self-expression, and a Pela case represents a sustainable lifestyle. Pattie Gonia has built a community that exists to uplift LGBTQIA2S+ people and allies and to provide a platform to give other voices and organizations. Pattie explained that Pride to them “means loving myself for all that I am and advocating for the equal rights and treatment of queer people with less privilege than myself.”

Follow Pattie Gonia on Instagram @pattiegonia

2. Isabel Sevilla (she/they)

Design | Brave

How they will be celebrating Pride | Preparing the next generation of LGTBQIA2S+ leaders at camp!

Isabel Sevilla, the Racial Justice Coordinator at Brave Trails, is also a mixed media artist and one of the designers for our Pride collection. Based in Portland, OR, Isabel’s art is inspired by the intersectionality of their identity, as a Black, Hispanic, Queer, Non-binary individual! Isabel’s case design evokes the sentiment of the serenity one feels when they are with the person that they truly love. They expressed, “There is no feeling in the world like being able to hold and look into the eye of the person you feel true love for.” Pride for Isabel means using their voice and art to speak on the communities that fill me with the Pride I carry on my shoulders every day.

Follow Isabel on Instagram @portlandperspectives.


3. Hey Rooney (they/them)

DesignHave a Queer Day

How they will be celebrating Pride | “Taking time to learn about and be thankful for my queer ancestors and spending good, gay, quality time with as much of my chosen family as possible.”

Rooney is a bubbly illustrator from Salt Lake City, Utah that mixes graphic and pop art.Their case design is based on the nostalgic “Have a Nice Day” plastic shopping bags which they have remixed to read, “Have a Queer Day" (now on a plant-based, sans plastic phone case might we add ;)).Rooney explains, “I spend a lot of time pouring over ephemera (collectible memorabilia). I love getting inspired to reimagine a concept, capturing its vibe but queering it.” As someone who is a tattoo enthusiast, a phone case is a similar medium where you are making a design part of your daily life. For Rooney, Pride is about self-determination. “I celebrate the freedom to live how I want, but also the collective freedom and diversity and beauty of the queer community.”

Follow Rooney on Instagram @heyrooney.

4. Noelle Werkema (they/them)

Design | Elevated

How they will be celebrating Pride | Kayaking on the lake with a few close friends.

Okanagan artist and Pela accountant, Noelle Werkema is inspired by the unique landscapes of Interior BC and the emotions that arise from immersing oneself in them. Noelle’s design encompasses the non-judgmental and positivity of being in nature.  "My design is intended to bring that same feeling of levity and freedom to others.” Their design process also incorporates instinctual flow that reflects their current emotions. They believe that the phone case is walkable art and the perfect conversation starter. To Noelle, Pride is the ability to fully exist without limitations placed on whom and how to love. “Pride is all-encompassing, all-inclusive, and has an impact on every part of our lives.”

Follow Noelle on Instagram @______noelleroseart______ .