Meet Dana De Ano

Dana has been a visual artist her entire life, and plans to be one the rest of it. She earned her masters degree in painting and drawing from the School of the Art Institute in 2002, and has shown her work throughout the US. Her work is also in numerous US and UK private collections. She predominately draws on paper with with very un-traditional materials; including anything from thread to tattered hankies to dry cleaner bags as well as many things in between. She calls her drawings two and a half dimensional as they lie somewhere between two and three D. Her work is about space, vast expanses, light and going elsewhere through these fictional, drawn worlds.


What do you believe?
I believe that life is short. And because of this I believe that we should take more risks and  put ourselves OUT there….   This makes me want to fear less, love harder and stop sweating the small stuff.

What do you hate?
I hate when people ignore your friendly hellos on the street and just walk by as if they did not hear anything.  Believe it or not you don’t actually get colder in Chicago when you open your mouth to say hi, you may even get warmer in another kind of way. I often reply with ‘guess not’.  Life is hard. We should be friendly to say the least. Aren’t we all in this thing called life together?

What is the most outrageous thing you have ever done (that you can share)?
This one I can share.  I dressed up as Gandhi when I was a sophomore in high school because my older sister and her friend dared me. I did not tell anyone that I was doing this, I just went for it, solo. It was not attractive to say the least, I wore a bald mask and a white loincloth. At an age when I was trying hard to fit in and cared too much about what I looked like this was ballsy to say the least. I think it’s weird that I still think about this from time to time… perhaps it gives me courage when needed.

A little known fact about yourself?
I am a fan of fan mail and write it somewhat often, most often to creatives that I admire. The list is long, the latest below. I think it’s really important to tell people that you admire and value what they do.  

Dear Sam Amidon-

Your music makes my heart sing. I wish I were lying but I have literally listened to your song Tribulation from But This Chicken Proved Falsehearted approximately ninety seven times in the last three days. That entire album I See The Sign stops me in my tracks, so incredibly beautiful and refrained. I am a sucker for the melancholic ones, cannot ever get enough D chords.

I absolutely LOVE when people march to the beat of their own drum and are authentic, that is what I hear in your sweet voice. I hope you grace me with music for many, many more years to come. I told my sweeter than sweet husband that if I had to pair my drawings to music I think it might be yours.

One of my all time favorite quotes reads: Art and music- the wings of the human spirit… though I cannot remember or find who wrote it. Perhaps in my next life I will be a singer, you guys inspire me so much and I truly believe that art has the power to change the world. You have changed mine and I can imagine many others. I also love your wife’s music. You guys are like Superman and Wonder Woman, it’s in your hands, go get it!

I hope you love what you do, you are truly blessed.

What new thing have you learned lately?
That local, pure honey can cure most anything. GO BEES!

Want more? Check out Dana’s work at

Photo Credit: Jamie Kelter Davis Photography