‘Women Make Trek’ is the brainchild of artist Laz Marquez and Heather Rae, founder of Fans Give Back, which hopes to bring together Star Trek artist from around the globe to celebrate the women of Star Trek and hopefully raise some money for charity.
Laz Marquez is a graphic designer, creative director, and illustrator whose body of works includes clients such as Disney, Netflix and Urban Decay. If you are on Twitter it’s likely that you will have seen his amazing artwork based on the Star Trek franchise. Heather Rae is an avid Star Trek fan and the founder of Fans Give Back which is a charity that accepts donations of unused or unwanted Star Trek memorabilia and donates back to fans in need. Today, they launch their latest initiative, ‘Women Make Trek’.
‘Women Make Trek’ is a celebration of the women of Star Trek via artistic contributions from artists around the world as Laz himself says “’Women Make Trek’ was born from a mutual love of the Star Trek Universe, art & design and the incredible wealth of artistic talent working today who you may or may not be aware of. We are explorers & curators of a legacy that has been beaming for 55 Years and counting”.
As well as paying tribute to the wealth of female characters that have graced our screens, there is also another side to this project and that is to raise awareness and hopefully some money for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, something that is very close to both laz and Heather’s heart. “It’s a very near and dear cause for both Heather and I and we wish to give back in any way we can to the women heroes out there who are struggling with the disease”.
Before today’s launch, we had a chat with Laz about his art and gained more insight into this fantastic ‘Women Make Trek’ initiative
Trek Central: Could you give a little background on your journey into art? Who was your early inspiration, what was it that drew (no pun intended) you to art?
Laz: As far back as I can remember, I was always drawing. On paper, on chalkboards, on walls. Anything I could find to express whatever was going on in my mind. As I got a bit older, although still a child, I was constantly trying to create drawings of some of my favourite TV and Film characters. I was raised by a single mother and had two sisters, so most of those characters happened to be women. Ripley from Aliens, Deanna from TNG, Storm from X-Men… It ran the gamut. As I became a teenager and into my twenties, I went through what I call the many phases of being an “artist”. It’s just like any other life stages, but with art. I went through my moody/angsty Tim Burton meets Igon Schiele phase which was inspired by my love of the horror genre. I went through my comic book phase where everything was clean and inspired by some of my favourites such as John Cassaday and Adam Hughes. I eventually went super introspective with my fine art and was super inspired by Frida Kahlo, who was just such an incredible, tortured, open soul.
And now, I’ve landed at a place where all of my “Art Life Stages” have come together to create a style that allows me to honour my favourite characters/genres while experimenting with tone, story and most especially emotion. I think that’s what was so fun about creating Episode Posters for Star Trek Discovery Seasons 1 & 2. It allowed me to break down those emotions and story arcs & encapsulate them into a single image. Sorry, I know that was a lot!
Trek Central: Your Star Trek artwork, like pretty much your entire portfolio of work, is amazing, have you always been a Star Trek fan and what series was it that hooked you in?
Laz: Thank you! That means so very much! I distinctly remember that nearly every night on the weekend I’d watch TV with my grandfather, and once he passed out, I had full reign over the remote. I stumbled on Star Trek: The Next Generation one night on syndication and was immediately hooked. I believe it was even “Encounter at Farpoint” oddly enough. I was amazed by the worlds being created and it’s characters. I was especially, instantly a fan of Tasha Yar. From there, I was hooked. I had tons of action figures and VHS tapes. I needed every and any book I could find. My coveted book was the Star Trek: The Next Generation Companion which I was obsessed with.
I watched mostly all of the series when they came out aside from Enterprise and then fell back in love with the franchise once Discovery was released. Now I go to the cons, on the cruises and am even starting initiatives like this one!
Trek Central: Tell us about your new art initiative to celebrate the women of Star Trek and the artists who find them so fascinating.
Laz: I often think to myself that I can be pretty sensitive to the situations and people around me. I remember about a year ago, and even more so today, feeling that the online/social Star Trek community was starting to become rather negative and off-putting. My instinct is normally to run and hide from that kind of energy, but I didn’t want to give up my love of Trek and the interactions/connections I’d made. So I decided to do something about it. I’m not a superhero, but being an artist I thought I could use that and my platform to bring some positivity back to the community. I connected with my amazing friend Heather Rae and after talking it through, “Women Make Trek” was born.
Our main goal is to highlight the strength and contributions of the Women who have made Star Trek, in all of its iterations, what it is. We strive to showcase an incredible group of artists from around the globe as they showcase their vision AND their inspirations from these women characters. This isn’t just a post of artwork on social media, these pieces of art are accompanied with honest and emotional stories on how these Women/Actresses have impacted the artists’ lives. Behind every piece of artwork is a spark that leads to wonder, and we look to share that in a deeper way. Be gone character counts, you don’t belong here.
As we hit warp-speed on this initiative, we will also expand and build new ideas that will bring fans & talent together in new & exciting ways. In the meantime, explore the amazing talent and their artwork and hopefully get inspired by their work! Some fun stuff is already in the works behind-the-scenes but my lips are sealed…
Trek Central: Where can we see this body of work by the Star Trek fan art community?
Laz: ‘Women Make Trek’ and all of its artists can be found at www.womenmaketrek.com. There you’ll be able to find New Artwork, Artist Bios, Artist Links and Inspiration Quotes. In addition, we’ll have further information on how new artists can contribute, actress/crew spotlights and other fun bits that are in development. Lastly, we have also included the opportunity for fans of this initiative to donate to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. My mother passed away from battling breast cancer and we wanted to find a way to give back in an even bigger way, so hopefully, people will support and donate.
In terms of social media, myself and Heather will be releasing content and updates on Twitter primarily. So if you want to keep up with the latest art/artist announcements please follow both @lazmarquez and @batlethbabe on Twitter.
Trek Central: What do you hope to achieve with this initiative?
Laz: We hope to do a few things. We want to strengthen the overall positivity and unity of the online Star Trek community. We want to showcase and support artists and their craft. We want to pay tribute to the wonderful female contributors to the Star Trek franchise including actresses, crew, writers. And truly, we want to give back in big ways across the board as Star Trek taught us by example. Starting with exploration and people.
For more details and to support this endeavour please visit
Laz’s Twitter: www.twitter.com/lazmarquez
Heather’s Twitter: www.twitter.com/batlethbabe
Don’t forget to get involved with Trek Central via our social media.
▶ Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/TrekCentral
▶ Instagram – https://instagram.com/TrekCentral
▶ Twitter – https://twitter.com/TheTrekCentral
▶ Youtube – https://youtube.com/TheTrekCentral
▶ Discord – https://discord.gg/f62Gbcu