Tuesdays with Ana: Once upon a time (a fairy tale in lipstick)

Once upon a time, there was a little girl who liked to draw. She scribbled with crayons, chalk, finger paints, and her mother’s lipstick.

“How cute!” said her grandma.

“Is that of me?” boasted her uncle.

“Draw me next!” begged her sister.

“Let me scan it to show everyone on Facebook!” said her dad.

“Not my brand-new Sephora!” moaned her mom, but she displayed the newest picture with pride.

As the little girl grew older, crayons turned into pastels and finger paints switched to watercolors and oils. She added charcoal, tempera, and pencils to her repertoire.

“Your perspective’s off,” frowned her teacher.

“Does not meet our guidelines,” dismissed her dream art institute.

“Why do you draw everyone so funny?” complained her niece.

“Lacks maturity and composition,” panned the art show critic.

The adult girl looked at her growing stack of unpaid utility bills and she wondered whether she should give it up. Perhaps she should apply at the local fast-food restaurant to earn minimum wage. Maybe she needed to learn graphic design and become more marketable as a digital artist. Maybe she should…

“This doesn’t look like your work,” said her first art teacher.

“You’ve lost your voice,” said her best friend from art school.

“This does not deserve to have your name on it,” chided her aunt.

The adult girl burned her latest creations, stomping around her home while screaming at the top of her lungs. She hated her work, she wished she never had tried to draw, and everyone could take their stupid criticism and die with it.

Then, when the tears dried on her cheeks, she came across an envelope her mom had put in the mail.

“For you,” the note read.

Inside, there lay a yellow, tattered piece of paper covered with black marks of a fridge magnet.

“It was always my favorite,” the note continued.

A strange neckless person-like creature with wings, flying across either an ocean or a pit of lava. She couldn’t remember which. All drawn in Cin Cin, Sephora tropical coral.

The girl took out a fresh sheet of paper, clipped it to her easel. She could almost feel the excitement of drawing for its own sake, losing herself in the sheer joy of discovering what she could create. She picked up her nearest tube of lipstick, and she drew.



23 thoughts on “Tuesdays with Ana: Once upon a time (a fairy tale in lipstick)

  1. Julie says:

    What a wonderful post, Ana. It’s taken – taking – me a long time to learn to trust my voice and create for myself first.

    But I’m getting there! πŸ™‚


  2. Barbara McCormick says:

    What a great post! It comes at the perfect moment, too. I’ve lost my way at my clay table, trying to go in too many directions. I pulled out a couple of my early sculptures, back when I first discovered clay. They weren’t great, but they certainly were fun and inspired. They’ll sit where I can see them from now on. Thanks so much for the reminder of why we do art.


  3. catrouble says:

    What a beautiful story Ana, but dang…ya made me cry with this one…know these feelings well. You so awesome at evoking emotions! Thank you.

    Hugs and Blessings…


  4. Irishey says:

    Hi, sweetie. I love your whimsical stories imbued with life lessons. I don’t know Sephora from Shinola, but I do know you are talented. Well, okay, I do know about Shinola, and I can tell sh*t from it, but I liked the alliteration. πŸ˜‰

    Hey, if you ever have to go flip a few burgers (or cater to too many publishers’ whimsies) to make ends meet until all your ships come in, just keep sailing as many as you can of your stories written your way. πŸ˜‰



    • Anastasia Vitsky says:

      *falls over* Well…smack me with my wooden spoon, it’s Irishey!!! *hugs you and smacks the snot out of you* You disappear like that again, and Mrs. Claus and I will have a little chat. You don’t want a July visit, do you?

      What in the world is Shinola? πŸ˜›

      I still love writing about the bubblegum and concreted. That was one of my favorite writing prompts ever.

      Now don’t go and disappear again, y’hear me?


      • Irishey says:

        Yikes! Self-flagellating! Holy cow, Ana. My, how you have grown. Lol!

        Just for the benefit of anybody reading, who does not know Ana hates snot and would never try to smack any out of me, she is making idle threats about that and about calling Mrs. C in July.

        Your concern is duly noted and appreciated. I will do my best to keep up an appearance around here and stay in touch. Little dramas wear me out, so I tend to fade away. It would appear that big drama that causes big hurt to my friends drives me out of hiding. Since I can’t punch anybody, all I can do is weigh in with my words and box of tissues.

        Bubblegum hugs! πŸ˜‰


        • Anastasia Vitsky says:

          LOL. What? The early Christians did it.

          I would smack you, yes I would. Just wait. πŸ™‚ About Mrs. C., well…best left unanswered.

          Do I have to put on an Advent Calendar in July just to get you to pop in every day? Hm?

          Sticky! πŸ˜€


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