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Darlene Jones

Darlene Jones is the newest talent to join the ranks of paper doll artists creating new works for Paper Studio Press. Although she says she’s a late bloomer and didn’t feel like “an artist” until she was nearly seventy years old, Darlene seemed destined to design paper dolls. As a little girl, she loved books and loved drawing, being fascinated by the colorful line drawings used as illustrations in the books belonging to her grandmother.

Paper dolls played an important role in Darlene’s childhood and her favorite was “Mopsy,” a syndicated cartoon that appeared in the Sunday newspaper’s comic section. Soon little Darlene had a shoebox filled with outfits for Mopsy that she drew and colored. Katy Keene ran a close second in her collection. As she grew older, her passion for art never waned and led Darlene to major in art at her hometown college, Sacramento State, where she earned a BA in art. However, she did not pursue artistic expression for 35 years which she spent devoted to her husband and four children. During that time, she was a volunteer docent at Bowers Museum but did find time to create two Tutankhamun paperdolls for that establishment’s education department.

With her children grown, Darlene finally found time to return to the drawing board. She designed greeting cards, invitations, miniature paintings and books including Taking Tea with Alice for Warner Books. It wasn't until 2006 when she was introduced to the international family of paper doll collectors and artists that Darlene found the perfect niche where she could nurture her talents in a genre for which she had always had a passion.

Her first endeavor for Paper Studio Press, Nancy Drew Classic Paper Dolls, celebrates the clever girl detective whose sleuthing has delighted young readers for decades. The popularity of this paper doll soon led to a sequel, Nancy Drew and Her Friends Paper Dolls.