Unforgettable Art New Artist Spotlight: Devan

The health and safety of our volunteers, staff and all of our constituents are our top priority as we continue to pursue our mission. Given the evolving nature of COVID-19 and based on the guidance from the Illinois Department of Public Health and the CDC, Unforgettable Art originally planned for April 25 will be rescheduled.

Unforgettable Art is an annual event put on by the Alzheimer’s Association Illinois Chapter. A lively evening filled with creativity, artists convert blank canvases into beautiful works of art in front of your eyes. Featuring live music, appetizers and drinks, there is no shortage of entertainment making this evening truly unforgettable. The artists donate their time and talents for this event, ending with a live auction of all artwork. Proceeds benefit research, advocacy and resources for those affected by Alzheimer’s and dementia. To showcase these wonderful and dedicated creators we are featuring our first NEW Unforgettable Artist Spotlight!

“My name is Devan and I am a self-taught artist who specializes in marker art. My art is inspired by the textures of Van Gogh, the style of Dr. Suess, and the colors of Peter Max. I combine the style of these famous artists to create a unique style of my own. I primarily use Sharpies but also have branched out to using Prisma and Copic markers too. I use the markers in a way that I have yet to see another artist do, I carefully layer and time my creating process to create one of a kind textures. I use these textures to make everything from ethereal nature scenes, beautiful women, and one of a kind cartoons. 

“Void Vixen”

I have been a professional artist for 10 years. My love for markers started when I began my career as an artist. I wanted to do something different based on my favorite artist Van Gogh, so I came up with the idea of creating textures with markers. I started taking commissions at 17 years old, wrote and illustrated a children’s book when I was 20 years old (this book is still not seen by the public), and started my first online store at the age of 21. During this time I spent countless hours practicing with the markers, slowly teaching myself new textures. I also taught myself how to draw 150 different animals; everything from different species of cats, dogs, and birds to exotic animals like alligators, giraffes, and sloths.

I decided to participate in Unforgettable Art: An Affair for Alzheimer’s because I wanted to give back to the community. I decided a few years ago when I first started doing art shows to find a way to use my art to give back to the community at least once or twice a year. My family and friends are always looking out for new opportunities for me to showcase my art. One of my parents found this event and while it specifically asked for painters, I applied anyway. I have a few family members that suffer from this disease so it means a lot to me that I was accepted. 

“Typical Tuesday”

While my art is my main focus I do find time to enjoy some hobbies. I like to consider myself a hippie, so I enjoy going on nature walks when the weather allows, usually I take my cat Punkin. Punkin is my best friend and has been my rock through my ups and downs of dealing with depression and anxiety. I have also been able to deal with my mental illnesses through my love for live music, I’ve seen over 50 bands/musicians, each time dealing with the crowds gets easier. I also love to hang out with my two best friends, we are always finding something fun to do, even if it’s just some good food and great conversation. I live a pretty simple life for the most part – just enjoying all the little things and making beautiful art.”

We are beyond thrilled to have Devan on board as one of our new artists this year. Find more information and images of Devan’s work below: 

Devan’s website

Devan on Facebook and Instagram: @devantheartist

Email: devantheartist@yahoo.com

Tickets to Unforgettable Art

Show Your Heart Some Love This American Heart Month

Taking care of your brain can take many forms- fitness, diet, and brain exercises to name a few. But managing the well being of your heart is proven to be of high importance as well. Blood pressure specifically is one area where we can have some control over our heart health. Though things like genetics may be beyond our control, there are things we can do in our day to day that can help keep the heart strong and supporting the brain.

Consider talking to your provider about your blood pressure to get an idea of where you are and what steps you might need to take in order to get it under control. Here are some management tips to help with blood pressure: 

Go easy on the salt. Salt or sodium sneaks its way into our diets in more ways than we often realize. There obvious offenders like soda and sweetened coffee, but foods like pizza, chips and deli meat also often tend to have a high sodium content. Consider getting the low sodium option at the deli counter and swapping the latte out for a traditional coffee. 

Eat your fruits and veggies. Foods high in potassium, such as bananas and leafy greens can help lower blood pressure. Have a salad with dinner or keep some bananas at work to snack on for an easy fix.

Chocolate. That’s right- a health blog is telling you to eat chocolate! A square or two of rich dark chocolate per day can promote a healthy heart. 

Get fishy. Omega-3 fatty acids can be found in most types of fish such as salmon, mackerel and herring. Also available in supplement form for the seafood unfriendly. 

Put the beer down. Alcohol can increase blood pressure, so consider swapping that second drink out for water or unsweetened tea. 

Show your heart you care this American Heart Month by making some changes to your daily routine. A few simple swaps can have great effects on the future health of your heart and brain.