Saturday, May 19, 2012

Thistle, Snap Dragon, Poppies, Rose & Last Day

Thistle, Snap Dragon, Poppies, and Rose
11 x 15
tea, watercolor, colored pencil, pen on Reeves BFK
For Mixed Media.  My final project.  Inspired by my Sketchbook Project 2012.   
I love using pen because it forces me to commit to my marks.  No erasing, no going back.  Once a mark is on the paper it is there forever.   
Thistle was suggested by my step brother.  He is studying in Scotland right now and the Thistle is the flower of Scotland.  Snapdragons were my favorite flower when I was a child.  Poppies for my grandfather whose nickname was Poppy and a Rose from my garden.  
I would like to do a series in this style of the state flowers for all 50 states.  I would also like to experiment more with making these pieces even bigger, maybe a whole sheet of Reeves.  


On another note 

Today is my very last, last day of school.  I will be attending my graduation from Academy of Art University next week.  I am excited and terrified all at the same time.

I began my college education journey in 2005 at Georgia Military College.  I was working toward my AA in Education.  After a year there I moved on to Valdosta State University where I majored in Art Education with the hopes of one day becoming an art teacher.  In February of 2007 my world was turned upside down when I found out I would be moving to a tiny Portuguese island in the Azores for 2 years.

At this point I had 2 choices.  Quit school and hope to pick it up again when I moved back to the states or find something that worked.  I was afraid that if quit school I would never go back so I decided to find something that worked.  I knew I needed to find a program I could do online as 1) I didnt speak Portugues and 2) there were no art schools on the island.  Many schools offer online programs, most in graphic design, interior design, or photography.  I wanted a fine art program.  After much searching I found the Academy of Art University online program.  I was the perfect fit.  I could continue my studies and pursue my passion.
When I began at AAU I thought I was talented.  I had taken some art classes at VSU and done well, so I thought the classes at AAU would be a breeze.  Boy was I wrong.  My first few semesters I struggled with the workload, finding the necessary supplies while living on a tiny island, and measuring up to my teachers expectations.  It was not easy and sometimes it wasnt very fun but I stuck with it.  I was learning a ton and I began to see a great improvement in my art.  
After our 2 years in the Azores we moved back to California.  The beauty of doing my school online is I didnt have to skip a semester when I moved or traveled nor did I have to find another school and start all over.  I could "go to school" wherever I had an internet connection.
With each 15 week semester at AAU I saw my work improve.  I was amazing.  I was growing and learning every week.  It was hard and challenging and frustrating but in the end it was all worth it.

So here I am.  I have turned in my very last final.  In a week I will don a cap and gown, walk across a stage, and have my Bachelors of Fine Art.  It has been a 7 year journey through 3 schools, across 2  countries, and in 2 states.  It feels so good to have reached the end, reached my goal that I set out to achieve back when I was in high school.

I have had a lot of support though this journey.  My friends, my family all believing in me and reminding me when I was hating my assignments that it would be worth it.  Reminding me of how far I have come.  Of how much my art has grown.  Thank you all.
A special thank to my amazing husband who has been by my side the entire time.  Loving me and supporting me through my lowest most frustrating points, and encouraging me to keep going.  He was always happy to look at my new pieces as I proudly displayed to him what I created.  He was the best critic when something wasnt working and I just couldnt figure it out.  He listened to my frustrations and my worries.  Supported my dreams and my goals.  He hugged me through rejections and reminded me that there would be many more opportunities.  Thank you Adam for being there all of these years.  I know I could not have done this without you.  I love you.  
I know my posts are usually this wordy but I am in a reflective mood.  This is the ending of a very big chapter of my life.  I have been attending school for almost 20 years and now it is all over... It is time for a new unknown chapter to begin.



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