Knowing the gift within was something I was to give away fulfilling my purpose for this life down here, I chose to only pursue art projects and jobs that could be done for the Applause of Heaven.
Born in the 1950’s (1955 to be exact) I always loved to draw, particularly horses, my first love! One of six kids, 5th generation Czech, I was born to Bob and Irma Kucera and many times I’m sure they wished I was born to someone else for the things I stirred up. We regularly visited my grandparents, Lottie and Lou Zeman who lived outside of Tama on their farm. I loved farm life and recently found a writing from when I was 10 years old stating how much I loved the farm and when I grew up.
I focused on and excelled in art in my school days which brought my grade point average up because I didn’t take a lot of tough math classes. I graduated from a two year commercial art program at DMACC in Ankeny, Iowa in 1980, (before there were computers in the art world).
Do you know what a commercial artist is? It is basically doing anything artistically to make money, which is probably why I can write so many skills in my resume; murals, faux painting, portraits, calligraphy, Logo design, sign work, photography, computer graphics, sets and props and costumes. I have so many diversifications. Some of my classmates from art school envy my endless list of fun and artistic adventures (though they made far more money than I ever did).
Life was never boring. I am currently designing a huge entry gate for a ranch in Westcliffe, Colo. I have truly enjoyed the artistic challenge. I worked for a prop and design company in Cedar Rapids and I also worked with the Cedar Rapids Symphony Follies and 1st Assembly of God’s major Passion Plays and Carols by Candlelight. My responsibilities included designing and painting huge 42’ backdrops. There were design challenges like inventing a Jack in the Box costume and a 10’ WWII airplane that was painted to look 3-D on a hat board.
God took me to California and Guam and New York, continually doing art. No matter where I was, opportunities always opened up. I designed T-shirts that went around the world from the Christian Service Men’s Center and having painted a Japanese Military ship for a Japanese Master Chief, I exchanged gifts and blessings with other cultures.
In NY and PA, my husband and I designed and painted children’s wings in churches, transforming white walls into the streets of Jerusalem and a biblical kid venture environment. It was lots of fun for all.
In Jamestown, NY we worked with welfare to work folks transforming an old brick hardware company into an indoor 100’ skateboard park, Christian bow hunter’s area and family adventure land. There was 60,000 sq. ft. on the second floor and lots of challenges.
We moved to Iowa to help my Mother with renovations to her farm. My husband fell in love with the farmland, sunshine and the honest, friendly people in Iowa. So here we are living in Tama, Iowa waiting to see how God wants to use us.
We are currently working with the Christian radio station in Brooklyn, Iowa, 99.1 KSKB painting walls, murals & designing signs and brochures. I also have a little spot on Mondays, 9 a.m. and 2 and 8 p.m., called Blessings to You, where we are graciously allowed to share our thoughts and our journey.
We are “Get your feet Wet” hobby farmers, reinventing this Tama farm that we live on. My husband Thomas is building me a studio in one of the barns that we moved. There are some exciting ideas floating around for possible used for this salvaged homestead.
Artistically I am currently working with the Tama/Toledo Chamber of Commerce to design some signs for the area. I am also finishing up the Colorado gate design. So, if you are looking for any art related improvements, call me. Remember, I am a commercial artist and now we all know what that means.
Local artist Lorna Perkins will have her lovely art on display through May at the Toledo Public Library. Make sure to stop in and see the wide variety of art that Lorna creates.
Lorna Perkins stands beside some of her art creations, some of which may be on display at the Toledo Public Library during the month of May. Photo Provided