As a child, Karly Dammel and her mom frequented the South Hill Library. The mother-daughter team would wander the aisles, typically the animal section, and check out books often.
Karly would typically draw the images she saw in those same books. Now, the 16 year-old’s trips to the library have come full circle. The Puyallup resident recently won first place in the Pierce County Library System’s card design contest.
Dammel’s design will be featured on the next Pierce County Library System card. The teenager was one of more than 200 artists who submitted their art for the bi-annual contest. From there, professional artists reviewed the entries and selected 12 finalists, and then an online vote determined Dammel’s design as one of two winners.
Nearly 3,000 votes were cast. The two designs will be on new library cards starting this fall. Patrons of all ages can request the new cards.
Karly has been drawing since a young age, and the contest seemed like a natural fit for her.
Winning this year, however, didn’t come without setbacks. Last year, Dammel entered the contest, but only came up as a finalist, not a first-place winner.
“She sees things like that (not winning last year) as stepping stones and not failures,” mom Cindy Dammel said. “Even this design (that won) was her second design this year. The first design she just wasn’t happy with, so out it went and she just kept working. I’m so glad she didn’t give up. She was ecstatic the last time they had this contest simply because she was one of 12 chosen by local artists.”
“You never know,” Karly said about her win. “You gotta keep trying. It made me want to try even harder this time.”
With all of the hubbub surrounding the Marvel comic book movies, Karly decided to make her card super hero- themed.
“It just came out like that,” she said. “It took me probably a total of three to five hours to draw it.”
Cindy described her daughter winning this round as having her own “Price is Right” moment.
“I think that’s pretty accurate because it hasn’t completely sunk in yet that I won,” Karly said.
As an avid sketcher, Karly loves drawing animals, but recently has started drawing people. But the home-school student says she likes to draw “anything, really.”
Once Karly graduates in two years, she hopes to become a stage actress, and keep her natural talent of drawing just as a hobby.
Karly offered her words of wisdom to others who are interested in participating in the contest in years to come.
“Just give it your best go,” she said. “If you win, congratulations. Just try your hardest in everything you do.”