In July 2015, Brian and Vanessa Peterson moved to Santa Ana California with a burning desire in their hearts to love their neighbors unconditionally and sacrificially. Night after night, Brian was on his living room sofa reading a book called, Love Does, and one evening he heard the screams from a man experiencing homelessness right outside his 4th floor apartment window. The agony on this man’s voice gripped his heart as he realized, “This very man is my neighbor, and I am called to love him.” Brian ran into the bedroom to share the good news with Vanessa and explained, “We have to at least find out his name.” Two days later, on the way home from work, Brian’s heart led him to find this man. He sat down next to him on the sidewalk and had the first conversation with one of his neighbors experiencing homelessness. In this conversation, Brian saw beauty in his pain along, with glimmers of hope in his eyes. Up until this point, Brian hadn't painted in 8 years. However, from the deepest place in his heart, he asked, “Would it be ok if I painted your portrait?” From this single moment, Faces of Santa Ana was born.
what we do
The mission of Faces of Santa Ana is to lovingly engage our neighbors without homes through art and creativity. We make it a priority to get to know each of our clients. We listen and tell their stories, meet them in their communities, and establish a healthy level of trust.
how we do it
We do this by befriending individuals who are experiencing homelessness, painting, and selling their portraits so that we can contribute to their life necessities. The subject receives 50% of the proceeds in what we call their “Love Account”. We manage the money for them by asking, “How can we help you with the proceeds from your painting?”
Our gallery features in-depth stories and real-life photography of each client we have embarked on forming relationships with. In the gallery you’ll have the opportunity to read their stories, see their smiles, and hear how Faces of Santa Ana has transformed their lives.
Click here for information and highlights from our SanArts High School collaboration.
HomeBless was dreamt up as a way to bring joy, comfort, and a place of peace to those who have previously experienced homelessness. Through love and generosity we aim to transform lives by renovating their new homes, restoring hope, and bring together a community of support.
Our large scale mural projects are a new initiative set fourth to bring love, light, and color to the cities that we call home. Murals are painted by Brian Peterson and Santa Ana street artist, Damin Lujan. Our hope is the spread our movement to walls all around the world with the radical message of love, hope, and positive affirmations that all walks of life can relate to.
We believe in a world where every person is visible, connected, and loved. Our vision for Faces of Santa Ana is wider than the 335,000 people living in Santa Ana, CA. We’ve made a foundation in our humble 27 - mile town, but we’re not done yet. From the east coast to the west coast, from North America to South America — our dream is to see a movement like the Faces of Santa Ana extend itself all around the world. Artist’s and creatives from all walks of life are beginning to come together and cultivate movements that are rich in love, relationship, and community.
help us help others
There are several ways you contribute to the success of Faces of Santa Ana. Donating to Faces of Santa Ana will allow us to cultivate relationships and expand the skills and needs of our friends who are experiencing homelessness. Through your generosity, we are able to assist with building, creating and changing lives.
Donate / Fundraise
Partner with us in fundraising to support our friends experiencing homelessness. Sign up below to activate a personal “Funraise” campaign to promote to your network.
Your purchase of t-shirts, notebooks, coffee mugs, and prints provide monetary support to the Faces of Santa Ana project. Rock the movement with custom FoSA merch.
partner with us
We’re expanding past our Santa Ana, California borders. If you’re interested in partnering with us in your city, we’d love to connect and get you started on painting your first portrait.