SAN ANTONIO — San Antonio artist Kaldric Dow is changing the face of portrait art.

“In San Antonio, it’s like I am the only one who is really doing this representation work for African Americans. Because there has only been so many. People in the art world really respect me because there is diversity,” says Dow.

It is a passion that was sparked while he was a young boy growing up in the Houston area.

“I was maybe in middle school or something and we went to this museum and they had you know abstract art and sculptures. Then there was this exhibition and there was this huge painting with a black man in a pimp suit and he was holding himself and I was like, 'you can put that in here?' That made me start thinking about representation and you can put stuff in places where you don’t usually see them,” Dow said.

Dow grew up in Houston most of his childhood but moved to San Antonio as a teenager and graduated from John Jay High School. He went to UTSA, which now features an exhibit of his work, years later.

“Generalizing the whole concept of what I do... is representing us brown people-representing skin tone-in way that almost glorifies it. Not really glorifying it, but showing it in a way that is not usually seen.”

His goal is to make sure there are black faces shown in the sacred halls of galleries and art museums for others to see.

“What I am hoping is that the same way that I was inspired when I went to that Houston museum is the same  way that I want to inspire somebody else, you know?”

The most important message he has to other up-and-coming artists is to believe in yourself no matter what.

“If you have great work, don’t just slide it under your bed, show it off, put it in people’s faces. It’s going to be to a point where you don’t have to put it up, they are going to come to you.”

Click here to view more of Kaldric's work.