Anna Montoya was the eldest sister of noted potter Maria Martinez (1887-1980). She was married to Cresencio Martinez (1879-1918), who was a brother of Tonita Roybal. After the discovery of the process to make black-on-black pottery, Anna quickly adopted the style to her work. Cresencio painted many of their early polychrome pieces, but after his death 1918 Anna painted her own pieces. She became an accomplished painter and Maria noted that "everyone bothered Anna to put designs" on their pottery.