Valley artist shows unique talent of drawing with napkins

PHOENIX (KSAZ) -- Danny Ray Vasquez, is a young man who dropped out of high school, got his GED, but struggled to find solid work for a long time. He did, however, manage to find a way to make things work, through a life-long passion of drawing portraits.

What makes the story so interesting is what Vasquez draws his portraits on.

"I have a habit of drawing too fast, So I try to figure out what surfaces could I use to slow me down," said Vasquez, who has been drawing since he was a little kid. It is a gift, and something he relied on when he was out of work.

"I'm trying to get recognized," said Vasquez. "It's the hardest thing about being an artist, is being recognized."

Vasquez's drawings are flawless, and includes freehand portraits of Sylvester Stallone, Julia Roberts, John Wayne and Marilyn Manson. They are not, however, sketches on a big note pad.

"I was just doodling at home, and having a meal, and had a napkin right there," said Vasquez. "So, that came to my idea to draw on napkins, for some reason."

Napkins. They are not the strongest of surfaces, but they work, and there's a good reason why.

"I can easily tear," said Vasquez. "If I'm rushing too hard, that's what I mean. It helps me slow down. If I'm rushing too hard or too fast, it will tear the napkin."

Patience with the surface, and patience over time.

"I spend, like, an hour or two a day for like a month to complete a drawing on a napkin," said Vasquez.

Now, Vasquez works full time, and is hoping that his unique skill set will help him open an art studio.

He knows, however, that he'll have to be patient.

"I would advise any artist to practice on more delicate surfaces, and you'll be surprised at what you find out about yourself," said Vasquez.

Vasquez also works as a medical transport technician.