GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A West Michigan native is the artist behind one thing individuals throughout the nation can have of their pockets and on their dressers.
Emily Damstra is the artist who created the picture on the brand-new Maya Angelou coin.
“I used to be very excited. I used to be ecstatic,” Damstra stated when she discovered her artwork had been chosen to be on the primary coin launched within the American Women Quarters Program.
Now dwelling in Canada, Damstra’s love of artwork began right here in West Michigan nurtured by her mom and lecturers at Forest Hills Northern.
“I had a wonderful highschool artwork trainer, Sue Rose, who was simply an distinctive teacher and a fantastic position mannequin as effectively. And I additionally bear in mind studying the basics of drawing mild on kind from Mrs. Quigley in center college,” Damstra stated.
Specializing in detailed illustrations of nature, Damstra utilized and was chosen to be a part of the United States Mint Artistic Infusion program, a bunch of artists who produce designs for cash.
“I all the time begin a coin design like this by doing a number of analysis,” Damstra stated.
Damstra re-read “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings,” learn a number of Angelou’s poetry and reviewed a bunch of pictures of her.
“I used to be actually impressed by Maya Angelou and her outstanding life. And I wished to do a design that was uplifting like a lot of her life and her political and social activism was,” Damstra stated.
You’ll see that uplifting spirit in Damstra’s design together with the chook and solar pictures from Angelou’s writing. Damstra offers credit score to her mother and father for all the time supporting her dream to be an artist and has recommendation for anybody else who needs to go for it.
“You actually do must have a number of self-discipline to be an artist, and naturally I’d suggest, follow, follow, follow,” Damstra stated.
As for this particular piece that can be in money registers, purses and pockets throughout the nation – it’s introduced the artist nearer to her topic.
“I positively really feel extra of a connection to her (Angelou) now,” Damstra stated.
The U.S. Mint is putting the Maya Angelou cash now. The subsequent one within the sequence can be Dr. Sally Ride. The sequence of cash can be produced via 2025.