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Wk B5 Student Choice: Blood, Flaws, and In My Case, Claws.

Hi guys! I just wanted to talk to you all about this week’s project for Art 110. This week was student choice, in which we got to individually pick something we wanted to try for the first time, just do for fun, or we could reattempt one of our previous projects we did in class.

My group, which consisted of Brayden, Isaac, Audrey, Brian, Armando, and I, decided to choose photography as our medium, hoping to make something new, interesting, and hopefully, the tiniest bit weird.

Our goal was to use fake blood to express our individual flaws, primarily something that made you feel weak or limits your ability to experience life to its fullest. For me specifically, I chose to depict my anxiety to the best of my ability. I have an anxiety disorder which causes me to have frequent panic attacks, limiting my ability to feel present in my day to day life. It makes it hard for me to leave my dorm without feeling fear, and it makes it hard to accomplish day to day activities because I am constantly overcome with thoughts and worries. I chose to make my poses me screaming and itching my arms, because when I get truly anxious, or experience a panic attack, I often want to scream, but I just end up itching my arms, hence the claws in my title.

I think we achieved our goal. After looking at the photos it felt as if I was able to even remotely express my anxiety through my expressions and movement. We got some excellent shots and I have to say a major thank you to Isaac for taking probably the best photos of me I have ever seen. Sure there is fake blood involved, but there’s nothing wrong with that. 🙂 Overall, I had a great experience with my friends working on this project. We got things done in a timely manner and took some great shots that were a lot of fun to look back on later. Plus having the opportunity to work with fake blood doesn’t hurt either!

It meant a lot to me to not only be asked to be a part of this group, but also to have the opportunity to express something I’m passionate about through an art form such as photography. My anxiety controls my life and through this project I was forced to address it and in some ways confront it, and in doing so I hope to make anxiety a lesser part of my life, moving on to not let my flaws define me, using my strengths and passions to drive who I am instead.

Some photos from the project:

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Once again, shoutout to not only Isaac Embry but also Audrey Resella for being absolute masters with a camera. These photos are incredible and were so amazing to get the chance to make. If you guys get the chance, I absolutely suggest getting together with friends, making something a little weird, and getting some incredible shots. It is so much fun and an experience I think everyone deserves to have.

That’s all for this post folks! I hope you all have a fantastic week and I’ll be back soon with my artist conversation of the week, or should I say short story 😉 Something a little different is on its way, so look forward to it! Anyway, thank you for taking the time to read this post, have a fantastic day, now go make some art!

Wk B4 Sketching in the Japanese Garden

““What I like about photographs is that they capture a moment that’s gone forever, impossible to reproduce.” – Karl Lagerfeld

Hello again everyone! I’m back again to discuss the fun (and relaxing) activity we did this week in Art 110. This week we went to the Japanese Garden on CSULB’s campus to sketch and take photos. I had never been to the garden before and I must say it was breathtaking!! Plus there really is nothing better in life than a bunch of koi fish.

Our assignment was to draw 6 sketches, 3 that were realistic and 3 that were abstract, along with taking 6 photos to a similar extent; 3 realistic photos and 3 abstract photos. I love abstract photography so I knew I would have a lot of fun with this project.

So without further ado…let’s look at some sketches and photography!


My Three Realistic Photographs:

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I don’t know why it tends to happen this way, but in attempting to make photographs look as realistic as possible, they tend to be less realistic, blurring at the edges while remaining vibrant in color. The first image is of the sand garden, it was so beautiful to look at with its many textures and curving lines. Next up was a photo I took of one of two waterfalls in the Japanese Gardens, it was really nice to just listen to it and relax, as well as look at the many koi fish who would swim up to it and back out into the pond. My final realistic photo is of an adorable little koi fish that I saw multiple times. I love koi fish so much and I couldn’t help but try and take a great photo of this colorful little guy!


My Three Abstract Photos:

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Fun fact about me, I love abstract photography!! I love examining textures and shapes and trying to determine what the subject of a photo may be when in fact the true concept is that there is no definable one. So here are three of the abstract photos I took in the gardens, see if you can determine what the subject of each photo is!


“Photography is an immediate reaction, drawing is a meditation.” – Henri Cartier-Bresson

My Three Realistic Sketches:

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Oddly enough when it comes to actually drawing realistic subjects, I prefer realistic drawings so much more than abstract drawings. My first realistic drawing is of the Japanese Garden itself and more specifically the pond in the center. Sitting on a rock and looking out over the water was very relaxing and tranquil. My second realistic drawing is of a koi fish! More specifically a very large koi fish that my friend Brian affectionally dubbed ‘Big John’. The koi fish was so adorable and I had a fantastic time sketching him. My final realistic drawing is of a duck. There were so many ducks in the pond with the koi fish, and most of them were constantly trying to steal the koi fish’s food. This duck in particular I named Henry, because he sat with me a while to let me draw him, and he followed me around for a bit as well, and I must say I grew a bit attached.


My Three Abstract Sketches:

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Just like abstract photographs, when it comes to abstract drawings you are not supposed to truly know what you are looking at when you first view it. That’s what I tried to achieve with these sketches, to what avail, that’s entirely up to you. Try and see if you can figure out what each of these sketches is a part of!


Compare and Contrast: Photography vs. Drawing

When it comes to my experience drawing in the Japanese Garden vs. taking photos in the Japanese Garden, I have to say I preferred drawing in the garden. There is nothing I love more than being able to sit in a tranquil place and just draw. Being able to repeatedly look at a subject as I draw it is really rewarding and fun to me, so I really enjoyed the realistic sketching portion of this project. Now that’s not to say I did not like taking photos in the garden, I think there is just a major difference between the two forms of media. When it comes to drawing, at least with a pencil and paper, I can shape what I am drawing into something easily recognizable, something I can easily look at and understand and enjoy. Photography, on the other hand, tends to require a more in-depth look into your subject. When I was attempting to take photos in the garden, all the koi fish were constantly moving all over the place, so they were blurry in most of my photos. Also, with the intense sunlight in most shots, it became hard to determine what I was necessarily taking a photo of in a lot of my pictures. Never the less, both forms of media were really fun to work with and I had an excellent day for my first time in the garden!


Compare and Contrast My Experience Realistic vs. Abstract:

I have always been someone that when it comes to being either more realistic or romantic I am far more romantic. Constantly choosing fantasy over reality. Yet the interesting thing is that this part of myself does not apply to my art. When it comes to drawing I will always prefer doing realistic pieces. I love the challenge of trying to replicate a subject to the best of my ability. With this experience in the Japanese Garden, having the opportunity to make realistic pieces was so exciting for me. I immediately knew that I wanted to draw at least one koi fish, and that honestly made my entire day. I must say though, that realistic drawing can be very stressful, always feeling as though you won’t be able to properly replicate a subject, as if it will never be good enough. But I have recognized that it shouldn’t matter if someone else can recognize what I am drawing as long as I can, and I had a blast. Realistic photography is the same, I always try and replicate the concepts I learned in art class in my photos, to what success I still don’t know, but there is nothing better than getting a great shot of a subject and feeling like you are actually succeeding as a photographer!! That might be exaggerating my skills a bit, but taking photos of other people and landscapes makes me truly happy, and actually having the ability to take decent realistic photos is so rewarding.

Abstract wise, I have always been interested in abstract drawings, as I feel like they are so hard to make. It just seems so difficult to draw microscopic details of a piece, and show the textures and shades of that small section of a larger subject. Nevertheless, attempting to do so was a lot of fun, and finding subjects to draw in such intense detail may have been a struggle, but definitely worth it in the end. Abstract photography, as I’ve said, is so incredibly fun to take, high definition cameras can truly get all the little cracks and grooves of a subject. Nothing is better than crystal clear focus on a subject’s tiny inner workings, expanding upon ideas that a viewer may not have considered before. There is something truly rewarding in making a viewer really think about one of your pieces, causing them to question what the real difference between real and abstract is as they try to make sense of an undefinable picture.


And that’s how my experience in the Japanese Garden went! It was so much fun to have the chance to visit, and I hope to go again soon. I’m looking forward to what we might being doing this week in Art110, and I’m even more excited to share what we did with you all! Thank you all so much for reading about my adventures, and I will be back with another post soon. I hope you have a fantastic week, now go make some art!

 

Wk B2 Design Thinking: What does your future hold?

  “Knowing too much of your future is never a good thing.” – Rick Riordan

What lies ahead in the future? To be honest, I have absolutely no clue. But there’s no harm in imagining it.

That is precisely what this week’s project for Art 110 entailed. We were to create three futures for ourselves, which is the exact opposite of anything I try to think about. The future makes me quite anxious, so trying to imagine what might happen, or even harder what I want to happen, turned out to be a challenge.

Yet even so, I’m never one to step down from a challenge, so here are my Top 3 Future Me’s….let’s see what happens…

  1. Everyone sticks to their original major…right?

When I was deciding what major to choose when applying to CSULB, to be honest, my first choice wasn’t film. I didn’t actually know what it was I wanted to do, all I knew was that I wanted to create a story that resonated with people. It did not matter what form that narrative took. So, I chose narrative production for film and electronic arts. Here’s how my life as a narrative production major, and more specifically a editor/screenwriter might play out:

5 year plan for Life as A Screenwriter/Editor:

  1. Finish general education courses for pre-narrative production, obtain internships in editing/production for television and movies, continue volunteering for 22 West Media, and get several jobs on the side to pay for a house/apartment near CSULB.
  2. Apply and get into the Narrative Production Graduate program at end of the semester at CSULB, continue volunteering for 22 West Media and perhaps start an internship with them, get a dog (preferably a large dog, I really like large dogs, fun fact), continue seeking outside internships at companies that will allow me to sit in and edit for them, study abroad in Ireland.
  3. Start working on my own short films on the side, apply for editing jobs while still pursuing internships (preferably internships at larger companies in Los Angeles), search for an apartment closer to the middle point between Long Beach and Los Angeles, travel with my parents over the summer.
  4.  Graduate with a degree in Narrative Production specializing in screenwriting and editing, get a job in Los Angeles editing for a company, if I can specifically look for a job/internship with Geek and Sundry Company or Critical Role, look for an apartment in Los Angeles or just outside of L.A (one that accepts pets), publish shorts films, work on writing more scripts.
  5. Have a stable job editing for Television or Film for a large company, have an apartment with a roommate or two, still have a dog, look into starting a relationship, head home to visit any chance I get
  6. Resources 0-100: 75%  I Like It hot to cold: 90% Hot  Confidence Empty to Full: 67% Full   Coherence 0-100: 84%
  7. Questions this plan addresses: q1. Will I be able to visit my family when I have a job? q2. Will I have enough money to live off of one job alone? q3. Will I get bored of editing other people’s videos all the time?

To me, this would be the ultimately ideal scenario, but even I know that there is no way it will all go so smoothly. It is quite hard to find a job you like off the bat anywhere, but especially in L.A. Though this is my current ultimate scenario, life will do what it sees fit, and that’s why I have to take those alternative paths into consideration. That’s why we will soon be faced with option 2…

2. Film is done for. Now What?

So, let’s take that entire previous five year plan based off of film, and throw it away. Time to think from the perspective of a world without film. What would I do? Well, besides a strong desire to create something that people relate to and feel something from, I have always felt a pull to help people in the medical sense through one format in particular; psychology. See, psychology has always fascinated me, and in particular I have always been interested in study the science behind and the current treatment of mental disorders and brain anomalies. If I could not pursue my love of art, I would put my time into helping others in either an everyday hospital or if I had the opportunity I would choose to work in a Psychiatric Ward. Now, how might a plan so drastically from my current one play out?

  1. Start pre-nursing program and complete pre-nursing general education classes at CSULB, look into volunteer/internship opportunities at local hospitals, look into finding an apartment/house to share with friends, start considering to double major or minor in psychology.
  2.  Enter CSULB’s official nursing program, get internships at local hospitals, get multiple part time jobs to support myself, get a tattoo, and visit home when I can.
  3. Complete undergraduate nursing program at CSULB, obtain minor in psychology, transfer to UC Davis to obtain Graduate degree in nursing, get a lower division job at a local hospital, maybe in Marshall Hospital, try to attain RN status, get an apartment in Placerville, get a dog, and see family very often.
  4. Graduate UC Davis with a master’s degree in nursing, transfer job locations to a psychiatric hospital once again starting at a low position, take up a job on the side to maintain a stable living condition if necessary, bring dog with me, travel to Europe over the summer, start a relationship.
  5. Have a stable, good income, still have a relationship, work up the ranks to a high position in nursing at Psychiatric Hospital, buy a house a good distance away from work, get another dog so I could have two, take up art as a hobby again, visit family as often as I can.
  6. Resources 0-100: 82%  I Like It cold to hot: 80% hot Confidence empty to full: 76% full Coherence 0-100: 78%
  7. Questions that this plan addresses:

q1. Will I have the time and opportunity to see my family as often as I want?

q2. Will I have the ability to get a dog to relieve stress and feel less lonely?

q3. Will my anxiety be at an all-time high from working in such stressful conditions as a Psychiatric Hospital?

This alternative future is honestly not horrible. I would get to see my family far more often if I applied to the graduate program at UC Davis, I would know the area, and housing would not be as expensive as it is in L.A. Then again, I would not be able to get a dog for quite some time as I would have no way to take care of it and I feel as thought a dog would be my only form of support during my time in pre-nursing. I might also have higher levels of stress which would be quite detrimental to my health and I don’t know if I would ever be able to get over no knowing if I was truly good enough to be a head nurse. Still, I would have a good income and have the opportunity to travel a lot when I got older. Who knows, it could still happen right?

But is that truly what I want to happen? Honestly I don’t know. If I was financially stable is that what I would want to be doing with my time? Which leads into our final possible future of the day….

3. Now don’t laugh….

Now I’m sorry to say things are about to become very nerdy. But to be honest I’m not sorry because it makes me so happy! If I was financially stable and could pursue any career I saw fit, I would in a heartbeat become a voice actor. I have always loved animated cartoons and videogames, and I would give so much to be a part of them. Games with real story and narrative fulfill many aspects of what I want to do in life and it would mean the world to me to actually achieve such a goal (without financial limitations of course). Here’s how such a plan would come to action:

  1. Start working on a bachelor’s degree in theatre arts at CSULB, join a talent agency, get multiple part-time jobs, attend many auditions, get an apartment, and take improv classes.
  2. Move into upper-division theatre arts classes, keep auditioning and attempting to get gigs, intern on multiple sets to understand the different elements that help pull a set together, get a dog (this might be obvious by this point), keep multiple part-time jobs, visit home as often as I can, travel to New York to see a show on Broadway, and start drawing again as a hobby.
  3. Complete undergraduate degree in Theatre Arts and start working on graduate degree in Theatre Arts, get an apartment closer to L.A, get a tattoo, keep getting gigs and developing a following, make a reel of my voice work, take vocal lessons, and as always, visit family.
  4. Get a master’s degree in Theatre Arts, never stop auditioning for gigs, try some live-action work whether that be film or television, try out to be on Broadway, by a house in L.A, enter a relationship, travel to Europe, visit family, and when I one day get the chance, attend San Diego Comic Con.
  5. Keep getting job opportunities and start continually voice acting for anime, cartoons, and videogames, make art whenever I can, move towards Hollywood, buy a house, keep visiting family, get married, and be happy.
  6. Resources 0-100: 65% I like It cold to hot: 93%  Confidence empty to full: 84% full  Coherence 0-100: 75%
  7. Questions this plan addresses:

q1. Can I handle the pressure of a lot of people judging my voice and how well I perform in a game/cartoon?

q2. Will I be okay with always having to audition for something new over and over again and never truly knowing if I’ve got it?

q3. Will I be able to go see my family or will I always be busy?

Another aspect of the project was to try and get an interview with someone in one of the fields I wished to pursue. Though it scared me, I sent out several emails to people I looked up to in the voice acting industry. Unfortunately at such short notice, and with them being highly busy people I was unable to get a response. Even so, I was able to find interviews online, where wonderful voice actors such as Liam O’Brien, Laura Bailey, and Matt Mercer answer questions about how to enter the industry, what it is like to constantly have to audition in front of people who do not care about you more so your voice, and what it means to give every performance as if it will be your last. They all had very wise words, and though I still am a little scared to even remotely thinking about entering the voice acting business, it definitely was nice to hear from someone who does it for a living what that kind of life truly entails. But despite my newfound knowledge, that type of future would definitely be years and years away. But you never know.

I also made a LinkedIn for the first time in my life. Albeit there is not much on it, but there is nothing more important than trying to connect to people and expand your ability to meet others and search for jobs. I even plugged in the careers listed in my possible futures! It will most certainly be of major use to me in the near future, and I am grateful for having the push to make one in Art 110. Let’s see where it takes me!

So as you can see, there are definitely multiple paths my life could take, and most of them in some way or another, are entirely terrifying. But that’s okay, nothing in life is set in stone and I could pursue all of these futures if I saw fit. In the end, all it comes down to is what makes me happy and what I could see myself doing for the foreseeable future. I can’t wait to see what that turns out to be.

So here’s my question for all of you, what are your possible futures? What do you want to happen? I’m so curious to find out how different someone’s life could be due to one single decision. I hope you all have a fantastic week, now go make some art!

Week B1 Plaster Casting

Want to see how my attempt at plaster casting went? Check out this video I made of the experience!

Hello everyone!

This week our ART 110 class started our first project, which happened to be plaster casting. Truthfully I have never done plaster casting before so I was actually nervous. But despite my nerves, I was more so excited to try something new. And what better place to try something new than at the beach? We had the opportunity to meet up with Glenn at Seal Beach on Wednesday, September 19th for art on the beach and some excellent tea! Before the day of the activity, my friend Brayden and I went on a weekend journey to Home Depot and Daiso to gather the supplies for plaster casting. I always tend to forget how much of an art store Home Depot tends to be, but once again I was pleasantly surprised! After gathering the supplies, it became a waiting game until the fateful day came around. Audrey (my roommate) and I met up on Wednesday to take the bus to Seal Beach. It was a pretty easy trip thankfully, and we got there with enough time to complete the project without much trouble.

Now keep in mind, I had no prior experience with plaster casting, so I was immediately lost. But never fear! When in doubt, never be afraid to ask for help. After asking some fellow classmates and gaining the information necessary to properly complete the task at hand, Audrey and I set to work digging our respective holes (letters in Audrey’s case, as she decided to make a T and an M, while I was set on making a heart out of my hands for my sister and I). After digging my hole and getting Audrey’s help to fill the hole with wet sand when I was ready to put my hands inside, I eventually had a mold ready to be filled with plaster mix. This turned out to be the most stressful part, as I really did not want to mess up because I only had a 4 pound bag of plaster. Nevertheless, the pouring process went as smoothly as it most likely could for a first timer. As hopeful as I could be for the outcome of the project, it was then time to wait 45 minutes for the plaster to dry in the molds.

In the mean time, Audrey and I decided to have some fun doing cartwheels on the beach (thank you to Glenn for taking one of the best photos of us having fun I’ve ever seen). I also had some of the amazing tea that was brought to the beach and it honestly made the day so much better. Nothing is better than tea if I do say so myself!

Wonderful teas aside, the time had finally come to carefully dig our plaster body parts out of the holes and my nervous were once again at an all time high. After all, what if I had messed up completely and failed the project? Anxiously I dug my plaster hands out of their molds only to discover that I had not failed. Kind of.

See, considering it was my first time plaster casting I should not have been surprised that my plaster would not turn end up looking like hands in a heart shape. Yet even so, I was quite surprised when I pulled the finished plaster out of their molds and discovered that instead of looking like hands, they looked like small dinosaurs! I certainly was not angry by this discovery in fact I was even happier with the final product than my original idea. But that’s art for you! 🙂

Although continuing to plaster cast things may not be the most practical idea for every day life, I am honestly considering taking it up as a hobby, primarily because it is a really fun activity to take part in and nothing makes me happier than going to the beach so it’s a win-win situation!

All in all, I had a really fun time at Seal Beach plaster casting and I would love to do it again some time. Maybe next time I’ll try making a plaster foot as a nice little homage to the sandcastle foot my friends and I made in the past…but that’s a story for another day. Thank you to Glenn for giving us the opportunity to attempt such an interesting art form and coming to the Beach to help us all out!

That’s all for now everyone! I hope you all have a great week, now go make some art!