Donna Marie Walker

Hello! Welcome to my website! My name is Donna and I like to draw artifacts.

I’m into things old, the older the better. …

I’m also an interpretive trail guide and volunteer, a teacher of artifact illustration, and a contract artist – all avocations that allow me to express my interests, while at the same time, give back to the community.

Here you will find examples of my work, drawing tips and advice, news about current projects, travel stories and photos, as well as upcoming events related to Archaeology, Native Americans today, and Nature Walks.

A Bit of Background

Native to San Diego County, I earned an AIS Certificate (American Indian Studies) from Palomar College in San Marcos, CA where I also majored in art and history.

I interned with the Museum of Man in collections for a year, assisting Grace Johnson, Emeritus and put together a scrapbook of things we did, like the Panama Exhibit. I drew pictures for the scrapbook of pottery designs from pieces we pulled for the exhibit. …

In front of creation story sign
Dressed to lead a walk at the Elfin Forest. The sign is the Kumeyaay Creation story I helped condense to go next to a bronze column created by architect, James Hubbell.

In 2008, I went through training with Mission Trails Regional Park to become an Interpretive Trail Guide and in 2011, started leading walks at the Elfin Forest in Escondido, CA. You can join me on the trail every 2nd Sunday of the month at 10 am!

In 2009 I started volunteering at SDAC (San Diego Archaeology Center) in Escondido, CA – also in collections.

At that time, Dr. Margie Burton was the research director. That first December, I gave bookmarks to SDAC’s staff of drawings I had made during the holidays.

The next day, Margie asked me if I would like to “try my hand” at drawing artifacts and that she had a grant to pay an artist for some illustrations. Of course I felt honored, and so began my passion for Archaeological Illustration. …

Colorado Desert Archaelogical Society Students
Members of the Colorado Desert Archeological Society (CDAS) at a class held at the Kumeyaay-Ipai Center in Poway, CA

I taught a three-part illustration class for the Center and afterwards started holding classes there for students from Dr. Philip de Barros’ class at Palomar College.

Today, I continue my relationship with SDAC and volunteer occasionally in special events. Director, Cindy Stankowski, and Curator, Adolfo Muniz, have been gracious in letting me use the Center to hold classes when I have a group of students and/or for one-on-one sessions.

I’m sharing all this in hopes that my experience will inspire you to follow your dreams.

Dreams come true in different ways and sometimes, in increments!

I’m not an Archaeologist but I get to draw and hold artifacts that are thousands of years old! I’m not the Park Ranger I thought I wanted to be but I get to dress up like one, and lead nature walks as an Interpretive Trail Guide!

—— Donna

Class at Kumeyaay-Ipai Center
Students doing a “site” drawing of bedrock mortars at the Kumeyaay-Ipai Center in Poway, CA. Part of the three-part class held for SDAC.