Jose was born and raised in New York City in the upper part of Manhattan. His community was predominately Dominican and throughout his early school years he was surrounded by friends who loved to draw. His love for art got him accepted to La Guardia H.S. of Music and Art near Lincoln Center were he was exposed to the world of fine art.
After graduating from High School, he went to Baltimore and attended the Maryland Institute College of Art. He studied everything from photography to environmental design and got a huge spoonful of Art History. Some of his influences include Henry Moore, Amedeo Modigliani, Lucian Freud, Giacometti, Paul Rand, Ansel Adams, Robert Mapplethorpe, Andy Warhol, R. Crumb, John Romita Jr., Sal Buscema, John Byrne, Jack Davis and the list goes on. This gave him the inspiration and the cojones to create Crying Macho Man.