Nina Levy: Sculpture and Photographs
Toothless from "How To Train Your Dragon" with our son Archer, dressed as HiccupAssassins Creed and Pacific Rim Mash-up:
Connor Kenway JaegerAlien and Predator Kids at the BeachUntickled Slow Loris with StrawberryBatman with Dog Head HandsKid Nefarious and Skull Brother from "Gladstone's School for World Conquerers"Skylanders Hot Dog Jumps on Connor From Assassin Creed IIIDinosaurus From Invincible Comics Disapproves of Organic Strawberries for LunchTeen Titans Robin's Muscles Don't Impress BatmanSuperman BeagleTeen Titans Robin PugNightwing Hound (Chihuahua)Kid Flash Italian GreyhoundGreen Lantern Toy TerrierAnimated Characters Voiced by Mark HamillCactus Dragon from DragonValeBreakfast from the Fuzzy Five as RobinKid NightwingSuper Hero BulldogGreat Little War Guy with StrawberryKid Flash, Robin, Wonder GirlAerodactyl (Pokemon)The Dish and the SpoonSuper Dogs (Krypto)Wasp (The New Avengers)Nightwing with BootRobin and Kid Flash (Teen Titans)Nightwing and PokemonBatBotProto (Batman, Brave and the Bold)Great White SharkNightwingHeat Blast (Ben 10)Alien X (Ben 10)Batman and Ace the Bat HoundSand Person (Star Wars)Batman Beyond with WingsRubber Bandit (Kapow)Reshirom (Pokemon)Naruto's PalmIndiana Jones with Thuggee GuardsBatman and RobinRed X (Teen Titans)Kid FlashUsagi Yojimbo with ForkUltimate Spider Monkey (Ben 10)Archeops (pokemon)Ben 10 Spider MonkeySpeedySansho (Usagi Yojimbo)Tepig and Oshawott (Pokemon)Landorus (Pokemon)Super GirlEcho Echo (Ben 10)Hawk PeopleProto and Ace (Batman)Spider-Man Upside DownAmpharos (Pokemon)Electro (Spiderman)ZombiekinsPercy JacksonWolverineUsaring (Pokemon)Danny PhantomTentacruel (Pokemon)Conkeldurr (Pokemon)Stone Rabbit NinjasAhabButterfree (Pokemon)The AtomAmerican Eagle and Bug Lady  (Kersplash!)Oshawott BlastBat GirlBatman and ClayfaceBatman and NightwingBatman in GliderBatman on RedThe Blue Falcon and DynomuttBatpodCinderella BarbieDoctor Ong (From Creature Tech by Doug TenNapel)Nose Dog (Flawed Dogs)Jetray (Ben 10)Sedusa (powerpuff girls)Joker with Goon and RachelKid Flash with ThumbNightwing with Staff (Teen Titans)Orange OttoDark Lugia (Pokemon)Optimus Prime (Transformers Animated)Lego IndianaMola Ram (Temple of Doom)BumblebeePeter Pan and Hook (Disney)ElectivireDaphne (Scooby-Doo)First PigCalvin and BikeFranklin with VirusAmerican Eagle and Bug Lady  (Kersplash!)Nightwing Upside DownDisney WitchIndiana Jones on HorsebackIndiana with Ugha WarriorsWailord (Pokemon)Indiana with WhipDr. DeSotoAce The Bat Hound StuffieHawk and DoveConfagriusAbamosnow (Pokemon)Dr. Doom and Iron ManDonatello (TMNT)Martian ManhunterThe ChipmunksGiant Toad (Oh No!)Elmer and his DragonInfernape (Pokemon)The Cat in the Hat Juggles the FishJason and SkeletonAmpfibianCalvin and Hobbes with Drooling Under the BedBizzard (Harry on the Rocks)Gloria and Officer BuckleWonder WomanDumb Bunnies in BoatSpaceman SpiffCool Motorcycle Dude (Once Upon a...)Loch Ness Monster (Iron West)Magic PickleOlivia and BandPerseus and PegasusCat in The Hat in the BathSam and Green HamSpiderman Offends the HulkRobert the Rose HorseSpider Droid (Star Wars)Elmo Family NapkinElmo and Mom NapkinElmo and R2D2
Napkin Archive:
For more current napkins- over 900 of them from 2012 onward- go to:
Daily Napkins Blog or
Daily Napkins on Facebook
Daily Napkins on Twitter

A couple of thematic series of napkins:
The 24 hour series
The super canine series

The first few thumbnails to the left are from 2013, the next few are from 2012, all others are from 2011 and before.

(from 2012)
I have been drawing pictures on napkins for my sons' lunch boxes every night for the last six years. I usually get requests, although they are sometimes hard to fulfill- "I want Nightwing and Kid Flash blowing up the Brotherhood of Evil while Batman and Superman watch."

I started out drawing simple pictures in black Sharpie on a napkin for Archer's nursery school lunches. I wanted to reassure him and to win him some additional attention at lunch- perhaps his teacher would have to read the message to him and then they could talk about what interested him about the character in the drawing. I tried to draw characters from the books we were reading at home, but those were often upstaged by Archer's obsessions with movie and TV characters and other pop culture detritus. We went thru months of "Draw me driving with Lightning MacQueen!" or "Draw Chicken Little having Gatorade poured over his head!" (Archer's favorite scene at 3 years old from the widely panned Disney movie)

As Archer blossomed into a boy obsessed with Star Wars and all thing related to guns, fighting, and violence in general, producing an image that satisfied him but would still be acceptable to pull out of a lunch box at a Quaker school became challenging. Luke and Darth Vader embraced proclaiming non-violent conflict resolution and Wolverine used his claws to skewer broccoli florets, but his Pre-K teacher was not fooled. She expressed her disapproval by refusing to read him the text to anything that had even a whiff of pop culture or conflict. She suggested that insects, animals and plants should tell him to have a good lunch, not Star Wars characters.

The teacher reception seems a bit more friendly in recent years. Superheros have been able to clutch their trademark weapons, even without healthy foods impaled on the ends without negative comment from teachers. I made a special guest appearance in Ansel's classroom to draw each child a personalized napkin. There had not been an opportunity to draw a princess since Ansel discovered that boys are not supposed to like princesses over a year ago. Every girl in the class requested a Disney princess with the exception of one who wanted a pegasus. The boys were predictably divided among Star Wars and Thomas the Tank Engine. For the following two weeks, the kids in the class continued to draw on napkins with Sharpies as if that was some widely approved set of art materials for four year olds.

Our napkins usually come back home along with all the uneaten food. They are often crumpled and a little spotty. My younger son still actually uses them for their original purpose. Archer, on the other hand, tells me, "oh, I only use the napkin to get attention, I just wipe my hands on my clothes." We have boxes and boxes of hundreds of returned napkins at home. They enjoy looking through them, revisiting their previous obsessions day by day, and leaving masses of crumpled napkins all over the apartment.

What started out as a brief nightly maternal indulgence for one child is now a sizable full color entitlement for two. I've amassed a huge collection of colored Sharpies, and have even resorted to buying pricey illustration markers for those shades that the Sharpie company does not provide. My sons' expectations are high, and they are rarely satisfied: "Mom! Red X's costume has gauntlets, and that's not the version of Robin that I wanted, Tim Drake, not Dick Grayson!" Occasionally, I come up with just the right combination of Batman and Ace the Bat Hound, and the lunchtime recipient actually tells me that he is pleased, but this is exceedingly rare. I make a point of not showing them the day's napkins before we head off school or camp, because most likely revisions or a complete do-over will be demanded. I gather, however, once they are at school and I am not around to berate, that the napkins are still doing their job of providing reassurance that Mom is thinking about them, and giving them something to attract the attention of their teachers and peers. During the height of Archer's long running obsession with the Pokemon trading card game, he was apparently able to console himself that even if he did not have a particularly desirable character card, at least he had a drawing of one on his napkin. in the first and second grade, this seemed to be good enough.

While I have certainly produced hundreds drawings that are often destined to wipe up spilled yogurt mostly to gratify my children, I find it a not completely useless activity in relation to my own interests. I have always been a bit lazy about drawing, and now I have an enforced drawing session every evening. The images that I am cribbing from are in most cases not what you might call "fine art"... although there are exceptions of course. But there is usually something to be learned even from the animation on Danny Phantom or the Teen Titans. Rendering a piece of Star Wars hardware convincingly is always an interesting challenge. The combination of indelible marker and easily shredding napkin surface is quite unforgiving of hesitation and has made my drawing more definite. And the act of drawing something for them every evening reminds me to pay attention to what they are thinking about, even if it is the fifteenth rendition of Batman.