Halloween Shop Update

Hello!

Boy, did September flew by! The weather in the Midwest has definitely started feeling chilly, and with the last week of September brewing in, I have a special announcement!

Like many folks, I’ve been feeling the festivities of Halloween and have spent most of this month creating new merch for my upcoming shop update this Friday, September 30th at 1:00 PM CST! I’m so excited for this launch because I’ll be featuring a new type of product that I have never made before…notepads!

Here’s a peak at all the new merch!

New merch includes mini art prints, holographic and glow-in-the-dark stickers, notepads, bookmarks, and downloadable coloring sheets!

My online shop is currently closed, but will re-open Friday, September 30th at 1:00 PM CST!

I hope you enjoyed this sneak peak and are as excited as I am about the launch!

If you would like to receive an email reminder when the shop goes live, be sure to subscribe to my online shop to receive updates! Thanks!

Duachaka

Autoptic Festival Weekend

Hello!

Just wanted to remind you all that I’ll be tabling at Autoptic Festival this Saturday, August 13th at the The Coffman Memorial Union in Minneapolis, MN from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.!

Autoptic is a festival featuring comics, zines, posters, and other printed materials. The festival also includes “panels, workshops, interviews, book signings, parties, and a day-long floorshow where over 120 artists can display their art, sell their work and meet the public” (Autoptic.com).

The event is FREE and open to the public! 

My confirmed table space is Table 37B!

I’ll be selling my comics as well as some mini art prints and stickers! I look forward to seeing some of you there!

On another note…

***ONLINE SHOP ANNOUNCEMENTS***

First of all, Tradition mini comics are back in stock! Grab yours today!

Tradition is a mini comic reflecting on the reality of keeping up with traditions in the world today. The story also touches on some Shamanist customs in the Hmong culture.

Secondly, my online shop will be closing this Thursday, August 11th and won’t reopen until later this month. If you need to purchase anything before than, please do so! Thank you!

Duachaka

Summer 2022 Updates!

Hello!

I hope everyone’s been doing well. I can’t believe it’s already more than halfway through 2022 and summer’s almost over! But with that in mind, I would like to make a few summer announcements of events I’ll be attending this month and next!

  • First of all, I am happy to announce that I will be part of the Northwoods Book Festival this month!

    I will be visiting the Winchester Public Library on Tuesday, July 26 at 4:00 p.m. to present on my mini comic, Tradition, and will be sharing my writing/illustration process as well as dive into the ups and downs of being a diverse author/illustrator!

    The event is FREE and open to the public, if you plan on attending!

    There are also other authors who will be presenting throughout the summer. Check out the flyer below for dates!
  • Secondly, I will be tabling at Autoptic Festival on August 13th in Minneapolis, Minnesota! Autoptic is a festival featuring comics, zines, posters, and other printed materials. The festival also includes “panels, workshops, interviews, book signings, parties, and a day-long floorshow where over 120 artists can display their art, sell their work and meet the public” (Autoptic.com).

    I’ll be selling my comics, stickers, and prints there! My Table Number is 37B!

    This event is FREE and open to the public as well, if you plan on attending!

And that’s all the major announcements I have for now! Thank you for following along on my artist journey. Until next time!

Dua

Pre-Orders Open for “The Collection” (Reprint)

Hello!

I hope you all are well. Recently, my comic book The Collection, went out of print and I honestly wasn’t sure if I wanted to reprint more books. However, I decided I go through with it!

I created this story almost 7 years ago, back when I was still in college. In fact, I launched my Kickstarter campaign to fund the first print run of this book on April 6, 2015!

The Collection is comic book about Duab, a Hmong-American 5th grader, juggling her school and home life meanwhile uncovering the importance of her culture. In the story, Duab struggles to complete a school project, help her younger sister get used to the school lunch, and host a family reunion party. 

The comic is near and dear to my heart as it shares some of the struggles I had growing up as a Hmong-American kid. I remembered being embarrassed about being Hmong and showing off my culture.

This story was created to capture my narrative in hopes that it would connect with kids going through a similar experience.

With that said, I have created a PRE-ORDER for copies of the physical book! If you’ve been meaning to get a copy, you can pre-order now! Head on over here:

Pre-orders will help me figure out how many to print and also lets me know if people are still interested in getting physical copies.

More information will be listed on my shop as to how pre-orders work. 

Also, April is officially Hmong Heritage Month! What better way than to celebrate the Hmong culture through literature and art?! If you’re an educator, parent, or know of anybody looking for something to share with kids about learning to be proud of who they are, The Collection might be a great start!

Duachaka

Spring Shop Update!

Hello!

It’s been a minute! This past month I’ve been busy making new merch for another shop update coming this Friday, March 18th at 4:00 pm CST! The 🌸 SPRING SHOP UPDATE 🌸 will feature some new works inspired by the bright colors and freshness of spring-time! Right in time before the first day of spring! This next update features several cute stickers and mini art prints that’ll brighten up your day!

Items won’t be available until Friday, but you can go over to my shop, scroll down, and subscribe to my Shop Newsletter to get notified when new items become available!

New Mini Art Prints
New Stickers

New Shop Launch!

Hello!

For the past month I’ve been working hard on migrating my old shop to a new one! I’m glad to say that I am finally going to launch my shop on a new platform tomorrow, FRIDAY, JANUARY 28TH at 4 p.m. CST!

As part of my shop launch, I’ll be selling some NEW products, which includes Valentine inspired cards, coloring sheets, and stickers!

I hope you’re as excited as I am! If you would like to get notified when the shop opens, just click on the link above, enter your email and hit “Notify Me.”

Thanks for reading and I can’t wait to share these with everyone!

Duachaka

Hello 2022!

It’s a new year…meaning new things coming your way!

Hi everyone!

Hope you’ve all have been well and been having a great start to the new year! Just wanted to pop in here and update you all on some recent things that’s been happening.

Recently, I did an audio interview with the Ryan Claytor Patreon Podcast! During the interview, we talked about mini comic Tradition, a bit of my history with the comics medium, and my plans for comics moving forward!

✨Interview Link: HERE

Ryan is also a cartoonist and my mini comic influenced him to write his comic, “A Hunter’s Tale,” which he is currently running a Kickstarter campaign for. Be sure to check out his campaign HERE.


In other news, I’ve been slowly but surely moving my online shop to a new platform! In the past, I’ve used Gumroad to host my online shop, but pretty soon here I’ll have a new storefront! I can’t wait for you guys to see it! If you follow me on social media, you’ll also see that I’ve been posting some new products that I’ll be dropping as soon as I get my new store running!

A new set of Valentine-inspired coloring sheets! Features 3 different designs.
A new set of Valentine-inspired cards! Features 3 different designs.

That’s all I have for now! I’m excited to get these out and anxious for what this year will bring. This year, I’m hoping to build my online brand and focus back on making more comics cuz I really miss it!

Wishing you all a wonderful 2022!

Take care,
Duachaka

Hmong-Inspired Gingerbread Coloring Sheets

Hello~

Recently, I created some new coloring sheets to add to my shop! The new coloring sheets feature a Hmong girl and Hmong boy inspired gingerbread cookie!

These coloring sheets were inspired by the decorative and colorful gingerbread cookies during the holiday season. I thought it would be fun to add a Hmong-inspired twist to it!

Here are some “behind the scenes” sketches of when I was coming up with the idea for the design.

These will be great for family or classroom activities during the holidays.

You can purchase these as a pair of 2 (1 girl and 1 boy) or, if you want to a value pack, you can also get it as a set of 10 (5 of the same girl design and 5 of the same boy design)!

I had so much fun making these, and can’t wait for you to color them! Hope you enjoy and Happy Holidays~!

Hmong-Inspired Holiday Gifts

It’s that time of year again! Not only are the holidays a time to gather with family and friends, but also a time to give back. Over the years, I’ve created various products inspired by my culture. I love sharing the beauty of it through illustrations and storytelling. As an artist, I’ve always felt the need to represent myself through art because I never had that same experience when I was younger.

Below are some Hmong-inspired holiday gifts you might want to consider gifting to someone (or yourself)! Having a piece of art, stationary, or book that reminds you of your culture is something special!

“Happy Holiday” Mini Art Prints

With the holidays nearing, one of the newest products I am offering are some mini art prints/card! These come individually or as a set of 5 mini art prints and 5, A7 envelopes.

“Friends Pho Ever” Mini Art Prints

These mini prints can serve as both an art print and card. These are NOT foldable cards. The artwork is printed on one side with the back blank. The uncoated paper stock allows you to write on the back of the card. If you don’t want to use it as a card, simply use as a mini art print!

Moving along, there are a ton of other AWESOME items I have in my shop such as…printable Hmong Paper Dolls!

These are digital PDFs which you will receive the file after making a purchase. There are 2 versions in my shop, a digitally colored version and a line-art version where you can print out and color yourself! These are perfect as kids/family/classroom activities. They are perfect for during the Hmong New Year season where families across the globe celebrate the New Year and get to wear their beautiful attire!

I also have glittery stickers and sticker sheets to brighten up your day!

Hmong Kids Coloring sheets

And larger art prints!

And of course (MY FAVORITE!), comic books inspired by my life as a Hmong-American!

I would’ve never thought I’d come this far as an artist making content and work about my culture. My hope is to put out more content in the following years. It’s inspiring to see other Hmong artists do the same!

Thank you for scrolling and browsing! If there was something here that interested you, please head on over to my shop!

*Please note that the shop platform I am currently using (Gumroad) does not offer a “shopping cart” feature anymore. If you’d like to purchase more than one type of item, please send me an email and I’ll help you with your order. I am in the process of looking for a new store platform to host my online shop. Hopefully will have it up and running come early 2022! Thank you for understanding and happy holidays!

The Making of “Farewell,” an illustration about Traditional Hmong Burial Clothes

Hello!

Today’s post is a behind the scenes look at the making of a recent illustration I did for the Light Grey Art Lab’s “The End is Nigh” exhibition.

“Farewell,” Digital, 2021.

My focus was on traditional Hmong burial clothes called “khaub ncaws laus,” which translates to elder/ancestral clothes.

Since I did not had much knowledge of these traditional garments, my process began with some online research. Little did I know, there was not much information online regarding this subject, so I had to dig a little further.

And so, I thought what better source than to ask my own parents regarding this matter. I paid them a visit and asked my mom about khaub ncaws laus. I was fortunate she was able to show me some that she had sewn or purchased over the years.

Female Outer Robe
Some sketchbook notes
More sketchbook notes

After doing my research, below were several thumbnails I created to figure out the composition I wanted for this piece.

Hmong burial clothes consists of several components. For this illustration, I thought it would be best to focus on a part that stood out most to me, which is the oversized collar on the female clothes known as the “dab tsho.” Unlike traditional Hmong clothes where the dab tsho is smaller, the female burial outfit collar is oversized. It is believed they were made large enough to support and carry the deceased person’s head when transporting the body to the burial site. The design on the dab tsho could vary from person to person or clan to clan. When I asked my mother about the meaning of the designs, she was unsure and told me they have always been made that way.

A different “dab tsho” design.

After doing my research and finalizing the composition, I sketched everything out. For this illustration, I worked digitally in Photoshop.

Rough Artwork

After the rough sketch, I would go over and finalize the line work.

Line Art

Once the line work was completed, I went in and finish the rest of the illustration with colors and texture.

Final Artwork, “Farewell”

The final illustration shows a Hmong women faced slightly back to us with an emphasize on the intricate design of the dab tsho.

I hope this “behind the scenes” post was insightful. I know I learned so much more about my culture and traditional Hmong burial clothes.

ART BOOK: If you would like to pre-order an art book featuring all the work from the entire exhibition, you can do so here!

IN-PERSON EXHIBITION: If you would like to get check out the artworks in-person, The End is Nigh exhibition is still open! It is held at the Light Grey Art Lab in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The exhibition will be displayed through the end of November 2021.