We are a community of women committed to Possibility.
We are committed to creating a platform for women, LGBTQ+, BIPOC, disabled, immigrant, and other minority artists. We give these remarkable artists and designers the opportunity to share their art and designs with people interested in fostering the creativity of Living Artists. This means YOU!
We are committed to sell goods YOU are excited to own! We want to feed your mind, your body and your spirit. We offer designs that make you want go to work and work out. We want to give you a moment of connection with beauty. And we want to make you laugh. We believe that laughter is good for your body, your spirit, and every-so-often, your mind.
Meet The Owner
Genea Cunningham (They/Them)
Genea, one of the co-owners of LovelyandStrong.com is our Business and Outreach Manager. They are committed to making a difference in the women-owned, LGBTQ+-owned, and Black-owned business communities. In college Genea played rugby, and in high school they excelled at tennis and track at the state level. Genea likes to run and hike glaciers. They take breathtaking photos while they're at it, too.
More relevant to Lovely and Strong, Genea was the eldest child of a single, black mother. As a teen, writing poetry and athletics were what helped them through realizing that they were queer. Genea wants Art in all its forms to be treated like valuable tools for teens and adults to deal with the ups and downs of life. They are committed that Art and artists be celebrated and paid well enough for parents to treat careers in the arts as valuable and respected fields for their children to venture into. And not just because they're married to Abi, our in-house artist. ;)
The Run With It and Strike A Pose athletic lines were inspired by Genea and Abi's experience as foster parents. Their kids struggled with BIG emotions they had a hard time dealing with. Abi, of course, made slime and other artsy projects with them, which was great. But when the kids REALLY needed it, they needed to RUN. Genea would take them to the middle school down the block with the brand new track. They ran laps together until the kids wore themselves out. (Possibly Genea got worn out first, but we'll never tell.) But to this day, running works for Genea, and she's found that yoga does, too.
Meet Our Creative Team
Abi Cunningham (She/Her)
Abi, aka The Lovely Abi C, the Abi of the Just Abi Collection, is our Lead Designer and Head of the Creative Team. As a bisexual, disabled artist from a multicultural family, Abi is committed to supporting artists and designers from these communities. Her passion is helping young beginners dipping their toes into the world of art. (Old and wise ones, too, she says.)
Read more in our blog about how Abi went from thinking she would never be able to be an artist again to living out her childhood dreams! Due to injuries from falling Abi had nerve damage in her arms and three bulging discs in her back that complained loudly every time she so much as looked at tube of paint. But her nephew Sean's 7th birthday was coming. Sean loves Pandas. Abi sucked it up and drew him a Panda on her iPhone, and BAM! Art opened back up to her.
Now Abi's brain wakes her at all hours to whisper new ideas, like, “Passion fruit, passion fruit, put them on pants and call them PASSION PANTS!” (Now that she knows what passion fruit looks like, you can check out her cute line of Passion Pants in the Lovely and Strong Athletics Boutique.)
Abi loves to talk to other artists, poets, and photographers. Abi isn't only the Head of OUR Creative Team, she could be the head of YOUR Creative Team! If you have an inkling that you'd like to see people wearing your art, email Abi at abi@LovelyandStrong.com.
Michele Parish Zuniga (She/Her)
by Abi Cunningham
Michele Zuniga, still lovely at 71, still going strong as Head Writer, runs the Still Lovely Blog, proofreads our copy and writes a good bit of it, too. Anything you read here that gives you that warm, cozy feeling of being part of our family? Yeah, that was Michele.
For those who don't know us personally, Michele is Abi's mom and has always been her biggest cheerleader. I'm writing her About section, as she was a little shy to sing her own praises the way she's always sung mine, but what you should know about my mom is that she has always been a fierce stand for what is good in the world.
My parents met in seminary to become ministers for the United Methodist Church. I could not be more proud that my mom went on to have a lifetime filled with raising money for amazing causes like social justice, helping women run for office, and raising funds for scholarships for bilingual educators. She's currently on her church's stewardship and spiritual formation committees. She volunteers and teaches and is committed to possibility and great lives for everyone. She basically rocks. So if you'd like to talk to us about running a fundraiser with t-shirts and swag? Drop my mom a line at the Still Lovely Blog.
Probably more importantly to you, my mom has been a writer for as long as I can remember. She was an English major in college and has a gorgeous older-than-I-am copy of the Riverside Shakespeare she's been lugging around my whole life. She's written books and blogs and poetry and edited my writing. She is AMAZING. You'll see.
PS Here Michele is with my stepdad Jesse Zuniga on the patio which will be filled with Jesse's flowers and bbq for our family and friends, once it warms up here in Colorado.
[UPDATE: Before we could take the picture on the patio, sadly, Jesse passed away, quietly, peacefully, napping in his recliner. Naturally, we are all sad, especially Mom, but moving on, "One day at a time."]
Annette Poole (She/Her)
As Creative Assistant, Annette fills the crucial role of saying Yes or No? Keep or Discard? Red or green? and she does it an unbelievable number of times a day. She is married to Demetrius, works full-time and cares for her two special needs children. We are so grateful for the time she can make to work with us.