I am honored to have the wonderful opportunity to uplift and inspire people on my radio show. This podcast was our special for Independence Day 2020 where we asked listeners to transcend history instead of chipping away at it.
This program was originally aired on KSL Newsradio’s Inside Sources with Boyd Matheson on July 3rd, 2020.
20 years ago George W. Bush stood at the NAACP convention acknowledging America’s faults and asked us to transcend this history, today a cry is uprising to obliterate monuments that reference this past. As Cardinal Dolan said, chipping away at memory is perilous. We must transcend not chip away history, and not let politics or elections cloud our vision of a better America.
56 years ago today President Johnson signed the historic Civil Rights Act of 1964, the landmark law against discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. Bringing the Founding Fathers vision that “all men are created equal” into greater practice. The legislation was initially proposed by President John F. Kennedy but was not signed until after his assassination. It was only a few years later when his brother Robert Kennedy addressed a heartbroken crowd on the continuing struggle for racial equality as he informed them of the assassination of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Junior. Months later, Bobby was assassinated as well. We cannot forget the long-standing struggle for civil rights, human equality, or the historical sacrifices that became the martyrs of this cause.
Boyd’s hope for America’s future is grounded in the idea that when we look to people instead of politicians, community instead of Congress, and culture instead of government control – our future looks very, very bright if we remember and transcend our history. So, while politics has failed: America will not!
‘Inside Sources with Boyd Matheson,’ Opinion Editor at Deseret News, takes you inside the latest political news and current events, providing higher ground for today’s discussions. Listen live Monday through Thursday from 11 am to noon at 1160 AM and 102.7 FM, online at KSLNewsradio.com, or on the app. Listen on-demand as a podcast on your favorite platform or web browser. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram.
I purchased an Apple Ipad and the Procreate App in early Spring to prepare myself for the #MerMay Challenge. My first venture into using my new toys for digital art was the #SixFanartsChallenge where tyou draw six pieces of fan art of favorite characters.
Of course I choose some kick-butt-hero-babes to feature! I present to you my #sixfanarts post! #hermionegranger #HarryPotter #Leela #Futurama #WonderWoman #LoreOlympus #Persephone #BobsBurgers #Tina #StarWarsRebels #Hera
Note: I literally got an iPad and Procreate in April to do this years challenge justice. (I might be driving my family nuts with the constant drawing
So… What is MerMay?
MerMay is a month-long celebration of creativity, community and above all… MERMAIDS. During the month of may artists of every age, talent, and capability are challenged to draw a mermaid everyday from a list of prompts given by the creator of #MerMay, Disney animator and artist Tom Bancroft.
MerMay 2020 day one: #Celebration
I am so excited for this year’s MerMay challenge! We need a virtual vacation where we #celebrate #creativity and come together with something that is fun and magical. May the mermaids flooding our screens bring you joy and whimsy in these hard times.
Of course my warrior has to be my favorite princess #WonderWoman. Her example of power, intelligence, kindness, and beauty make her my absolute favorite super hero of all time. One day, I want to work for her.
I have been lucky enough to grow up in a place where we have beautiful mountain trimmed sunsets. But with my mermaid living on the ocean I had to create a different scene for her.
This was my first time really experimenting with the procreate brushes abilities. It might not be perfect. But I am excited for the possibilities the brushes represent for my artistic future.
MerMay day four: #StarWars
You know this nerd girl was excited for this one! I decided to draw #TheMandalorian’s Cara Dune in what I feel is very on brand from this awesome lady. …
I had so much fun drawing this and love the details; The sneer on her face, the tattoos on Cara, and #BabyYoda showing her his toy ball.
MerMay day five: #Royalty
For today’s royalty prompt I choose to illustrate a ‘mermaified’ scene from Disney’s #Enchanted. Giselle’s curtain dress. I honestly think this film is Disney at its finest! …
To make the dress more #SeaWorthy, I switched out the floral motive to shells and such!
MerMay day six: #Tsunami
I had such a hard time figuring this one out, so I went simple. I always loved the scene in Prince of Egypt, when the Red Sea parts and you see the whale silhouette. So, I that a shoal of mermaid silhouettes in a tsunami would be cool and a good exercise in making identifiable shapes.
MerMay day seven: #Tranquil
I love hammocks and know a mermaid friend would love them also. There is nothing more tranquil sounding to me (particularly right now) then lightly swaying in a hammock, over gently murmuring waves, and soaking up the rays of the setting sun. *Sigh*
MerMay day eight: #Heroic
Supergirl is a great example of a heroic character that has risen from being in the shadow of another, to her own powerful and complex character. I am happy to be able to be a fan of hers.
Yes, I drew another #DCcomics hero. Don’t be surprised. I decided she needed a different tail because she was an alien. I am very happy with how this turned out.
MerMay day nine: #BestBuddy
Of course I had to draw my best friend Yvette and I as mermaids for this prompt today! She is my #MinnieMouse and I am her #DaisyDuck; best friends with drastically different personalities and similar hearts. I am such a better person because of her influence and am proud to be her families adoptive aunt and sister. Thanks for twenty years of friendship!
MerMay day ten: #Ashamed
For today’s prompt I created a piece depicting the shameful way we treat our oceans. I hate that something as commonsense as keeping the world clean is politicalized. It’s a false fight and false choice of division. We all have stewardship over earth and need to find ways to come together and take care of it. *End Rant*
MerMay day eleven: #Outcast
Sometimes being an outcast is just a result of being true to yourself. Figuring out who you are and what brings you joy! That is more important than just trying to blend.
I had fun playing with patterns on this one and was so happy to do a double tail mermaid.
MerMay day twelve: #Fury
I really enjoy greek mythology, so I had to draw a Fury or Erinyes for today! These deities of vengeance punished those who broke oaths. I see this fury as Tisiphone, punisher of murder. I still struggle with facial expressions, but love how this turned out.; She is so done with excuses.
MerMay day 13: #Alien
So, I actually have a love-hate relationship when it comes to a the idea of extra territorials. But luckily my love of mermaids outweighed the fear for this post. I had a lot of fun with colors on this one. I just wouldn’t want to come across her in deep space.
MerMay day 14: #Adrift
Oh my goodness how relaxing does this look! I can’t even begin to describe how much I miss swimming and lounging about in the pool. This was such a fun mermaid to draw. I love how the details turned out with the water and her freckles.
MerMay day 15: #Rescued
Ok, this is a bit of a stretch but it’s what came to me. An Arctic mermaid rescuing the Heart of the Ocean necklace. It has always bothered me that she dropped that beautiful jewelry into the water. I don’t care if it’s was symbolic, that was just selfish.
MerMay day 16: #Deity
My deity for today’s prompt is #Artemis from @usedbandaid’s #LoreOlympus. It is the best comic on @webtoonofficial and free to read unless you “fastpass” the most recent episodes (which of course I do). It’s a beautifully stylized and epically written retelling of Greek mythologies. I am constantly amazed at the creator Rachel Smythe’s skill for storytelling and beautiful art work. It was an intimidating challenge trying to translate her style to my own.
MerMay day 17: #Crustacean
Just a voice lesson from our favorite crab. #LittleMermaid was my favorite as a small child as I also loved to sing and felt like a fish out of water. I had a plastic fork I would comb my hair with as my Dinglehopper.
MerMay day 18: #Wreckage
Sometimes we can explore wreckage and find the treasure of direction. It can be scary facing the negative, but worth the discovery.
MerMay day 19: #Wrath
Oh, she mad. Now it’s just a guessing game over why.
MerMay day 20: #Ancestors
Family history can be an important part of understanding who you are. From cultural heritage to inspirational stories, learning about those who went before you can help guide you in life.
This was a fast one today, hopefully I will find more time for tomorrow’s prompt.
MerMay 21: #Futuristic
I really love the hopeful optimism of retro-future style. I was so excited to incorporate the look here. I have also been learning so much from tutorials and am pleased to be learning so much.
MerMay 22: #Ablaze
I had fun with this one. I really wanted to experiment with color layers and brushes. I couldn’t figure out the flame brush, so it will have to be added to my ’must learn’ list.
MerMay 23: #SirenSong
I love singing. Music is an essential part of my life. I loved the idea of a mermaid just swimming in music
MerMay 24: #Treasure
Pirates of the Caribbean has long been a favorite of mine. And each time we float past the treasure room scene, Dad tells us how as a kid he thought it was real, and if he could just reach out and grab a handful he would be set for life.
MerMay 25: #shark
I just think whale sharks are neat. (But I totally had to trace it)
MerMay 26: #Shore
I ran out of time today, so you get simple style. Just a mermaid on shore building a sand castle. But the question is, does the sun in the corner need sunglasses?
MerMay 27: #Punk
She might look spiky, but she is actually really warm hearted.
MerMay 28: #Bestial
I love the look of the #HarryPotter mermaids. The lake folk always interested me, and how book 4 had some of them with grindylows as pets. Had to draw it.
MerMay 28: #Orphan
Little Orphan Annie, everyone’s favorite orphan. Even if she has creepy pupil-less eyes. Simple style today.
MerMay 30: #Pirate
We want the redhead!!! I had to draw Redd from Pirates of the Caribbean. It’s my favorite drawing this year.
MerMay 31: #Smartphone
Smartphones are meant for selfies! Final mermaid of 2020. Wow did I learn a lot. Basically I need to learn to draw men.
THANK YOU! I am now looking forward to MerMay 2021!
January’s trending art challenge is the #ToonMe challenge. It’s where the artist creates an image that is half photo, half cartoon, and all themselves.
So, for the first time in ages I dusted off my digital drawing skills and participated. I choose an image from 2019 that meant a lot to me, since it was my outfit for the Disney 101 panel, and I felt wonderfully playful in it.
I opened the image in Photoshop and started drawing in layers (realizing for the 100th time I need to learn Illustrator or another better tool.) It was difficult, awkward, frustrating, but oh so rewarding!
It took a few hours but I am very happy with the result and look forward challenging myself more in my art this year.
Resolutions are very important to me.
I like setting goals, manageable and stretch, to push myself into being a better person. Even though I know I will not achieve all my goals, I believe that the process of goal settings helps me identify my strengths, weaknesses, and the opportunities I have to grow. And when I look back on my goals, it helps me to acknowledge all the things I have worked towards, learned, and accomplished.
I discussed my philosophy on new year resolutions and they helped held me accountable for my goals by having me state them on the air.
Listen to the segment now:
That being said, here are my public 2020 resolutions.
I have cultivated skills over the years that allow me to create content, shows, and things for others, but it is time I create my own content and thus followers. This means regularly blogging, social media posting, pursuing opportunities to write with KSL, and sharing my drawings. I would love to build myself to a place that I can get a Patreon account and a regular content cycle.
I have spend the last few years living hand-to-mouth as I finished up my return to school, started a new career, and embarked on a blended-work lifestyle. I can’t keep doing this and need to find ways to make more income and save for the future I want. I need to do this by marketing myself and my services better, creating content that will generate income (Patreon, self-published works, Drama Princess book 2), and pursuing other avenues of income. I NEED to save an emergency fund, and an ‘opportunity fund’ that would allow me to say yes to what life offers me.
I simply want to get healthier. This means working toward a healthy weight, going to the doctor appointments I have been putting off for ages, and taking better care of my mind. I have some amazing friends who are helping me be accountable for this one.
2019 was a great year of creative growth and continuing to bloom amid trials. My goals for 2019 revolved around becoming comfortable with my creative voice and being able to afford to pursue opportunities. While I was not able to accomplish all I had plotted, I am happy with the progress I did make.
I am not going to share all my goals for 2019, but would love to hold myself accountable for some of my more public goals. Here I go!
At the start of 2019, my work as a radio producer with The KSL Movie Show was new and intimidating. (It still is in many ways!) I really wanted to learn the show, find ways to organize it so we can runs smoother, plus-up the content of the show, and increase interactivity to add value to our audience. I also wanted to seek ways to showcase my skills and prove my worth at KSL while improving my resume for future career opportunities. This is probably the goal I have done the best as achieving this year.
I cannot begin to describe the pride and excitement I feel at what I have brought to the Movie Show and KSL.
I developed a system of organization and templates that allows for quicker prep time, clearer communications, and just a more fun show for our audiences. The system has been adopted by many of the talk producers, so I must be doing something right! I cultivated great topics, guests, and relationships that have added variety and interest to the show. And expanded our show’s audience interactivity through the launch of the Movie Show Club, texts, Facebook group, and more.
I have proven my value outside of The Movie Show through special projects like launching new shows, training producers, modernizing a legacy show, and improving my ‘talent’ voice. I have become a regular contributor the Fan Effect podcast, building myself as THE Salt Lake Fangirl. And I have a special sense of pride in my work with General Conference special programming.
I am excited for all these developments and the opportunity to continue to grow my show and presence at the station in 2020.
In 2019 I really wanted to expand my creative voice beyond my work at KSL. While I had big dreams of writing blogs every week, short stories every month, a sequel to my Drama Princess book, and building myself into a kind of pop-culture influencer in 2019…. I totally chickened out.
Because, you know, talking to people is scary!
But, despite the fact I didn’t keep this goal as fully as I wanted, I did push myself to do some cool creative things:
I went to several pop culture, artistic, screenings, and cultural events. I had planned on blogging and social media posting about these, but didn’t for the most part. I did meet some amazing artists, see some great shows, and learn that I do have an interesting enough to follow, but I would need to post about them to make this possible.
I e-published two of my short stories on Amazon. ‘The Salt Shaker and the Pepper Grinder: A Charming Short Story About Our Favorite Couple,’ and ‘The Rock, The Paper, and The Scissors: A Cautionary and Fanciful Tale of How Three Best Friends Became Enemies.’
One of the things I am most creativity proud of is becoming a special guest at Fanx Salt Lake Comic Convention. I had set the goal at the start of 2019 to be on two panels, not even knowing how I would go about such a thing, but I did it! I got to talk about my favorite place on earth on the Disneyland 101 panel, and I moderate my own panel on embracing your inner geek.
I knew 2019 was going to be a challenging financially for me. It really was an experimental year to see if I can earn a living through part-time contract work, creative earnings, and as a self-employed massage therapist. The answer was.. kinda?
The most important financial goal for me this year was to afford the dream Disneyland trip that a friend and I had been planning on for years, which I am happy to report that we made! My friend is an amazing single mother of two great kids, one of which has special needs. We both took on extra work and budgeted like crazy to take the kids to Disney before they got too old for the magic, and while her son with Muscular Dystrophy could still enjoy most of the rides and experiences. It turned into one of the best Disney trips I have ever had!
Other financial goals revolved around taking care of myself better money-wise. Early in the year I took a course through my church on Personal Finances and Self Reliance that really emphasizes the importance of financial freedom. I understand the concepts, but could have done better applying them in my life.
I worked at building an emergency fund, but it got drained often because of well…emergencies…and poor planning. I was able to pay off my massage school student loan (after 14 years!) due to hard work and one final donation from an amazing massage client. And I meant to afford to finally visit doctors this year, but besides an emergency dental visit, I managed to procrastinate those much-needed appointments.
So, ya… I kinda failed the ‘financial experiment’ but am back in the lab redeveloping a plan to succeed in 2020.
At the start of this post I mentioned that 2019 was a year of growth amid trials. While I don’t want to give details about these trials, I do want to acknowledge them. I got a piece of news mid-summer that crushed me, forced me to alter my life significantly, and basically ruined the majority of the rest of the year. This trial forced me to move from a place of comfort to discomfort and I continue to grow because of it. I learned I can lean on trusted people in my life, that I am stronger than I thought, and progress means whatever I need it to mean.
My wounds are healing now. And in the future, I can help others because of the scars they left behind.
2019 was hard, and wonderful, and terrifying all at once. I got to do so many amazing things! Meet awesome people, go great places, and overcome significant trial. I learned I need to trust my own voice and put myself out there even more as a writer, creative, and as a massage therapist in order to afford a better life for myself. I frankly need to earn more income to pursue the creative lifestyle I want, and help the people I want to help.
As such, I am excited for the growth 2020 has for me, and excited to share my 2020 goals with you in another post.
Thank you for your time.
Please note: All opinions expressed on this website are KellieAnn Halvorsen’s and do not reflect on the opinions, policy, or believes of any entity she work for, her clients, or any of her affiliations.
Christmas Special: Drama Princess, Plus Shipping
'Ellie the Drama Princess: A Child's Introduction to the Theater Process' Book: > $14 per book* + $6.95 USPS Flat Rate Domestic Shipping. (Please include shipping information with your order)
Christmas Special Drama Princess, pick up from Halvorsen
'Ellie the Drama Princess: A Child's Introduction to the Theater Process' Book: > $14 per book. (Please include pickup details with your order)
You are invited to attend panels I will be a guest on for FanX Salt Lake Comic Convention in Fall 2019 at the Salt Palace Convention Center, 100 S W Temple, Salt Lake City, UT 8410. I will be talking Disneyland, and moderating a panel that I pitched inspired by my story of pursuing my creative dreams and switching careers. It means the world to me to have people like you supporting my creativity and voice. You are welcome to follow my adventures at FanX on my social media.
You can purchase your passes, and save 20% with the code FANXKSL at https://fanxsaltlake.com/tickets/
So you’ve never been to Disneyland, or you haven’t been for several years? Our panel will give you everything you need to know before you go. What attractions you should ride, which restaurants have the best food, how fast passes work, and how to make the most of your vacation. We’ll even give you the details on what you can expect at Halloween and Christmas.
Friday, September 6, 2019 @ 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm, in Room 250A
Geek culture is now mainstream, and many individuals are tossing their fears aside to embrace the stories and fandoms that bring them joy. Listen to pop culture experts’ tales and tips on taking the plunge into the geeky lifestyle you so secretly long for.
Saturday, September 7, 2019 @12:00 pm -to 1:00 pm, in room 255A
Please note: Halvorsen is attending FanX as a freelance creative and not as a representative of KSL.
“Live ’til You Die.” Has been longtime ALS sufferer, Creighton Rider’s motto for the past 10 years as he has fought this progressive neurodegenerative disease. And he has done just that as he continues to press the boundaries and limitations his body has challenged him with. But the issue has now become, he has lived a lot longer than medical science predicted, and his life savings to support him and his family is dwindling.
While friends and family have rallied to support Rider, even forming a team called “Creighton’s Riders” raising funds for ALS research and awareness at the Saints to Sinner’s bike relay event, it’s time for others to join the team.
Halvorsen was a Publishing, Sales, and Administrative Assistant from June 2017 – July 2018.