15 Illustrations: Costume Parade at the Library Center

I am working with Inktense pencils, Micron ink pens, and Canson Illustration 11×14″ 150lb art pad to create 15 illustrations (that is how many pieces of paper are in the art pad) of my current family life and inspirations.

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This work is narrative in content and uses color in a monochromatic way accentuating one part of each drawing. These fun and quirky illustrations are a reflection of the current joy and activities I have been experiencing.

“Costume Parade at the Library Center,” was a fun Halloween costume parade at the Library Center in Springfield. All of the librarians dressed up and set up trick-or-treating stations throughout the library. They had the kids line up and go through the library collecting fun toys and stickers from each of the librarians. This was a super fun event, and because my kid had no intention of staying in the line, we caught the end of the line and wandered through at our own toddler pace. I used Inktense Pencil Saddle Brown to accentuate the library’s architecture and add to the structure of the space in the drawing.

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My favorite things about this drawing are all of the fun costumes and patterns,

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the cool arches and architecture of the library,

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and the plant and “hold” bookshelf.
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Inspiration for this drawing

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15 Illustrations: First Birthday Buzz

I am working with Inktense pencils, Micron ink pens, and Canson Illustration 11×14″ 150lb art pad to create 15 illustrations (that is how many pieces of paper are in the art pad) of my current family life and inspirations.

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This work is narrative in content and uses color in a monochromatic way accentuating one part of each drawing. These fun and quirky illustrations are a reflection of the current joy and activities I have been experiencing.

“First Birthday Buzz” was the big first birthday milestone for our daughter. We invited a big group of family and friends for an outdoor party. It was in early October and warm out with a cool breeze – perfect light sweater weather. We had a chili lunch aka “frito pie”, cake, singing, and presents in a short but very sweet hour. I used Inktense Ink Block Mustard because M said it would look the best and I wanted something bright and happy.

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My favorite details of this drawing are the birthday singing group and all of their clothing patterns and styles, the little girl holding the balloon with the birthday hat bee stinger,

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the decorated cake table,

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the fun party pendant, garlands, and decorations, (the garland was also in “Key of G” Drawing”)

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the fun family closeups,

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and the table cloth pattern.

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Inspirations for this drawing – these amazing photos were taken by Nikki fromNikki&Paul Photo/Film.

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Living a Real Pinteresting Life

Pinterest is that special place we visit when we want to feel inspired, organized, and all put together. The projects there are displayed with all of their beautiful details, perfectly categorized, and placed in their own neat boxes. And when we think of our own projects, don’t similar results always feel achievable?

For example, I don’t know how to use a sewing machine, but when I saw that handmade doll, I knew if I got all of the supplies I could do that, right? My DIY doll was later named “douche rag,” which we shortened to “doo rag” for the child’s dignity and my self-esteem. The mother smiled politely and being a good mom she put the hand-sewn, buttoned-eyed choking hazard out of her child’s reach as soon as I left. Typical, right?

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But these results don’t have to describe our Pinterest experiences. By following the six simple suggestions below, we can have better, more fulfilling DIY projects.

1. Know your goal

What do you want to achieve? Pick one thing and stick to it. This is not the time to redo your entire living room, put together from scratch a first birthday party, or try to create the artwork for an entire exhibit. Think bite-sized. Think baby steps. Instead of remodeling the living room, pick a corner and start there. Instead of an entire party, hand-make the invitations or the cake. Rather than an entire exhibit, just paint one picture. You want your goal to be manageable enough that you can easily achieve it. Consider what you will need to invest in terms of finances, time, and new skills, then decide if it something you should attempt on your own. Let your successes and your new skills build slowly developing a sustainable momentum.

2. Enjoy the process

We are used to admiring picture-perfect results, but the real action is behind-the-scenes. It’s the process, silly! If you are not enjoying yourself, those fun pictures you take and post may be of your first and last Pinterest project. Even if you are a perfectionist, try to be present through the entire process. Taking pictures throughout may help. You might just make some great memories and a few photo-ops. Also, people can sense fun, so even if your project is not perfect, people may be drawn to the fun moments you had. Think of those funny “nailed it” pictures when things gets rough.

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3. Be gracious to yourself

“I’m good enough, I’m smart enough, and gosh darnet people like me.” This is the time to be okay if your project falls apart, your cake is lopsided, or your painting looks crappy. You set a goal and you achieved it. Way to go! Make sure you get your Pinterest picture of the good parts.

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4. Be gracious to others

Social media is a buzzword, but it’s also a community of real-live human beings. If your project succeeded, then that is good for you. You have had some success! Make sure to enjoy the results in a fun and healthy way without gloating or making comparisons with other Pinterest posters. If your project failed, pick up the pieces because you didn’t really fail. You set a goal and made an effort – and that itself is a win. Be careful not to turn your disappointment into jealousy or judgment. Remember the reasons you are on Pinterest and help build that community.

5. Be brave

You are going to have to have confidence to post that picture success or failure. Part of “living a real Pinteresting life” is showing and sharing your stuff.

6. Keep calm and Pinterest on

Be okay if no one else cares what you just did even if it was comparable to Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel.

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You can visit my Pinterest at www.pinterest.com/lksukany/

KUAR the Holly Jolly Trolley with the Damsels in Distress

We were asked to come up with a fun Christmas sounding song with many variations for the KUAR Arts & Letters “The Holly Jolly Trolley: A Ride Through Arkansas History,” so we came up with “Snow Angels.”

We used vocals, electric guitar, bass guitar, percussion (ride symbol, drum pad wrapped in foil, jingle bells), glockenspeil, banjo, piano, and harmonica to create a catchy and fun Christmas tune called “Snow Angels” in which two people go out into the morning winter snowfall and make snow angels before they have to go to work.

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Snow Angels
Snow angels, snow angels lying in the sun.
Snow angels, snow angels winter’s just begun (or so much fun).
You and I, we made them this morning at play.
Ten o’clock we had to go to work, we had the bills to pay.

“The Holly Jolly Trolley: A Ride Through Arkansas History” to air Friday, December 23, 2016 at 7:00 pm CST on KUAR 89.1 in Arkansas. You can listen to the show online at ualrpublicradio.org/programs/arts-letters and you can listen to the “Songs for KUAR Arts and Letters 2016” on the Damsels in Distress bandcamp page at thedamselsindistress.bandcamp.com

Happy Christmas from the Damsels in Distress!

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15 Illustrations: Finding Nemo with Friends

I am working with Inktense pencils, Micron ink pens, and Canson Illustration 11×14″ 150lb art pad to create 15 illustrations (that is how many pieces of paper are in the art pad) of my current family life and inspirations.

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This work is narrative in content and uses color in a monochromatic way accentuating one part of each drawing. These fun and quirky illustrations are a reflection of the current joy and activities I have been experiencing.

“Finding Nemo with Friends” features some of our friends from Arkansas (and Romania). Our friend Nana and her three kids were so amazing to help me navigate the land of having a kid. We were invited over – an open invitation – for whenever we wanted. Nana’s husband put together a “Finding Nemo” fishtank and E loved watching the fish. I used Inktense pencil Iris Blue for the color and used it on the water in the fish tank, the sky in the Romania painting, and placed a wave pattern on the rug.

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Some of my favorite things about this drawing are Nana’s daughter reading to E,

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Nana’s son playing cars,

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Nana’s dog (and Ein’s friend Jack) watching W play with his cars,

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Nana’s oldest daughter reading a good book,

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the fireplace,

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the painting of Romania that Nana commissioned for Livada orphan sponsorship,

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the awesome “Finding Nemo” fish tank,

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the fun wallpaper pattern,

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and the waves in the carpet, which I put to not only use the color in an interesting way, but to show that our short time together (before we moved to Springfield) was in some ways metaphorically like the “Finding Nemo” dentist fish tank scene.

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Inspirations for this drawing:

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