Wk 15- Art Experience- Designing MY Life

This week’s art activity isn’t like our normal “art” experiences. This week we watched a video by Dave Evans called “Designing the Life You Really Want” his talk was mainly about applying design thinking into your life. I think this video came into my life at the perfect time. As a senior who is graduating in about a week, I really needed his advice about how how to go about designing my life after graduation. He claimed that about 80% of people pursue a career that is completely different than their field of study. And that it is okay to do so because people’s interests, needs and goals, evolve over time. This made me kind of happy to hear because I am currently thinking about pursuing a career different than what I majored in.

Dave also claimed how he hates when people ask the question “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I honestly hate being ask this question as well. This question implies that we are limited to only being ONE thing once we are adults and that we stop growing. But humans never actually stop growing. Instead he tells us rephrase the question into “What are you going to do as you continue to grow?” I like this question a lot better.

As I continue to grow there are many things that I would like to do. I have narrowed it down to 3 for the purpose of this activity.

Here are the 3 Possible Future Me’s:

  1. The thing you currently think you’ll be doing with your life

A school teacher. I love teaching. I have recently been thinking a lot about pursuing this career. In high school I had a few jobs tutoring younger kids and even did an internship at an Education consulting company that created Common Core exams for grades k-12 (This was my rapid prototyping). I didn’t realize before that teaching and helping students really makes me happy. I know I would have to get my teaching credential which would take a year or so which I could do a year or so after I graduate. I think I might still be a little young to be a teacher so I am in no rush haha. In the mean time I could work in a learning/ tutoring center or even at my old high school. Then once I have my credentials I can start teaching in my own classroom. I would love to teach elementary school. Another thing that really entices me about being a teacher is all the paid vacation time. I don’t know any other job where you get paid winter and summer vacation. I would love to use this time to travel the world because I’ve never really left California. Paris will be my first destination. Then Italy… Ireland…Spain…

2. The thing you would do if the current thing disappeared tomorrow

Public Relations. In college I majored in journalism with a specialization in public relations and a minor in communications so I could always fall back on this. I thought I wanted to work at a fashion public relations agency but after doing my internship at one in Beverly Hills (this was my rapid prototyping), I’m not so sure its for me. The work itself was easy, I loved working with fashion like clothes and jewelry and working with stylists and celebs, but what I didn’t like were the long 9-5 hours sitting in an office and driving in 2 hour traffic to get to and from work that left me with no energy to do anything but sleep after I got home. So I guess I could apply for an entry level position at an agency which would be an account executive and then hopefully get promoted within 5 years. Not really sure what else I would do in this. Probably move to LA where all the fashion PR agencies are at and drive everyday in traffic. Yay…

3. The thing you would do if you were financially secure, and no one would ever laugh

A painter. I wish I could paint all day and drink wine. If I was financially secure, I would definitely be a painter and sell my pieces here and there to make some money. I could also teach art classes which would be amazing. I would also travel so I can discover new art and see the most beautiful places and paint the landscapes so I can remember what it looked like and felt like forever. I could even blog about it because I really enjoyed having this art blog. I would even love to work in an art museum. That would be a great job to be surrounded by creativity all the time. This is probably something I could do when I am a lot older and married probably with kids but who knows.

Ratings:

  1. Painter
  2. Teacher
  3. Public Relations

Dave Evans also mentioned that when people say “be your best self” it implies that you only have one self. But really we have multiple versions of ourselves. And these different versions of our selves are ALL good and require different things to be happy. So it is not very practical to just work in one area you entire life but try out different jobs to satisfy your other selves.

After I graduate there are SO many things I want to do that I don’t really know where to begin. I just know that I am going to do everything I need to do to make all the versions of my self happy. ūüôā

I can’t wait for life after graduation.

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Wk 15- Classmate Conversation- Jacob Siciliano

For our last Classmate Conversation of the year, I met Jacob Siciliano. I learned that Jacob is a first year and a freshman. He is from Lancaster, California. I told him that I was familiar with Lancaster since I have been there multiple times to visit family. He told me he felt sorry for them because Lancaster is a terrible place to live, which made me laugh because my cousins who live there say the exact same thing. There is absolutely nothing to do in Lancaster.

So Jacob instead is living at the dorms at CSULB. He lives in the Parkside dorms which I do too! So we were able to bond over the fact that living at the dorms isn’t the best. We agreed that the food at the dinning hall completely sucks and that having bad roommates can make your time here a living hell. He tells me that he hopes to get an apartment near campus next year because he absolutely hates living in the dorms. He claims that he has very rowdy neighbors who play their music obnoxiously loud and there is prankster in their suite always doing stupid pranks in the bathroom. He especially hates sharing a bathroom with people who are messy. He also told me he was basically an only child since his only sister is much older than him which is why he isn’t used to living with so many people here at the dorms.

Jacob is a film major who hopes to specialize in screen writing which came from his passion of theater and acting when he was in high school. Check out his blog here!

Wk 13- Classmate Conversation- Esmeralda Melchor

This week, I had the pleasure of meeting Esmeralda Melchor. Esmeralda is a Long Beach native who decided to attend CSULB because she didn’t want to leave home. She loves living in Long Beach way too much to move anywhere else. She is a freshman and is a film major. For her sophomore year she is hoping to join the film club to get more involved in school. She told me she was heavily influenced by her mom to major in film because growing up her mom would always have a video camera in hand recording her and her siblings. Now she wants to be the one with the camera. She is mainly interested in becoming a director. It is her dream to make and direct music videos. ¬†Her favorite type of music is everything rap and alternative. When she is not at school Esmeralda works at candy shop in Long Beach called Sugar Daddies. Her favorite candies are Sour Belts.

Wk 12- Art Experience- Ethnography

What was human life like before electricity & the light bulb?

Pretty damn lame. I’m assuming. I honestly was not very excited to do this activity when our professor told us about it, but it didn’t turn out to be so bad. The purpose of this activity was to spend an entire night without electricity so we can imagine what it was like to live a thousand years ago when humans did not have light and electricity. I know that now it is something that we take for granted. I have always had electricity in my life since the day I was born and have come to rely on it heavily. Most humans today do.

So for my night without electricity, I did a couple non-electric related type things. I took some pictures of what I was going to do before the sun went down to show you guys and then turned off my phone.

I spent most of the night outside in my backyard so I wouldn’t be tempted by any electricity in my house. I live with my parents and my 3 siblings who use a lot of electricity. The TV is usually always on, music is always playing somewhere and they are always on their phones. So being outside was my best bet. I started about an hour before the sun went down and spent it playing with my dogs.

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Playing outside with Chachis.
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My silly little Jerry.

After playing with my dogs outside for a while in the dark, I decided to get this candelabra we have in my house and light it so I could do some painting outside. This wasn’t the best idea. Painting by candle light is not very easy as the lighting is not very good. I know some of the best artists in history could only make their masterpieces in candle light, but I just wasn’t able to see clearly and didn’t get very far with my painting and gave up.

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My next activity was trying to read a book by candle light. Also not fun. I got this Bad Feminist book on my birthday last month and thought today would be a good day to start reading it. However, reading in the dim light is the perfect recipe for a headache. I didn’t even make it past the prologue.

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Bad Feminist in bad lighting.

After my failed attempts to keep myself entertained in the dark, I decided to go back inside. A few hours had past already so I just decided to end my night and go to sleep. It was probably the earliest I have gone to bed in a long time. It took what felt like forever to fall asleep but the bright side of it all was that I woke up the next day feeling extremely well rested.

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No electricity = bed time.

Overall, this was a very frustrating activity to do. I mean it wasn’t too hard to be without electricity but it was a little boring doing this activity on my own. I knew it was going to be a little tough going in to it because I rely on electricity so much. The bright side to this dark activity was that I did get some amazing sleep. Maybe I should refrain from electricity after the sun goes down solely for this purpose haha. Living without electricity is also more organic and harmonious with nature since I did have to spend a lot of time outside. But it is more limited and boring because most of the activities we are used to doing require electricity. I really don’t know how people survived without constant stimulation. I truly wonder what they did…

Wk7- Artist Conversation-Elena Roznovan

Exhibition Information

Artist: Elena Roznovan
Exhibition: Stop & Stare
Media: Video Installations
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Max L. Gatov Gallery East
Instagram: @eroznovan

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About the Artist

Elena Roznovan is a graduate student here at CSULB’s School of Art. She is on her second year and is working on getting her Master’s degree in Fine Arts. Her major is Sculpture. For her undergraduate studies she attended the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, Maryland. There, she learned everything she knows about sculpting. She is originally from Moldova, a country that used to be part of the USSR and is next to Ukraine. Her interests in art began with painting and then graduated to installations when she moved to California. Where she is from, California is known for its light and space and therefore decided to create this interactive installation.

Formal Analysis

Roznovan’s specialty is video installations. In this exhibition, she presents a moving image of a California dessert with a projector. With this image she adds colored optical props that make the image seem as if it is 3D or moving although in reality it is still. These square optical props look as if they are windows that one can step through to get to the dessert. The optical frames also have 2D and 4D content that when looked at provide that 3D experience to the viewer.

Content Analysis

Roznovan’s work investigates concepts of phenomenology, time and the way images are constructed. She creates video installations that challenge the viewer’s perception and expectation of moving pictures and the space in which they are standing. For this exhibition she was inspired by the lightness and openness of California’s dessert. Uses the outdoor environment paired with optical props that promote the mediation of one’s perception through phenomenology of the time and space.

Synthesis/ My Experience

Roznovan claimed that when people see her installations they can sometimes feel anxious when their perception is altered or they can feel calm and meditate. My experience seeing this installation was the latter. I walked in, sat down and stared at her projection. I felt so serene looking at the image. After a few moments it felt as if I was no longer there at the gallery and was actually transported to the dessert in the image. Truthfully, it was a wonderful experience and I have never seen art like this before. I do wish that Elena goes very far with her art.

Wk7-Classmate Conversation-Megan Maeda

For this week’s classmate conversation, I talked to Megan Maeda.

Megan Maeda is a Freshman here at CSULB. Her major is Japanese but as we were talking she said she had an appointment with an adviser after our class to change her major. She said that Japanese was way too hard so she is going to switch her major to Asian Studies instead. When I asked her why she came in as a Japanese major she claimed she was playing the acceptance game because she knew she would get accepted in the school as a Japanese major like her older sister did. Smart.

Megan is from Corona, California which was so cool because I am from Lake Elsinore which is the city right next to it! We talked about how we have both have gone to the Shops in Dos Lagos in Corona to shop or eat. In her free time she enjoys hanging out with her friends, playing soccer, and Filipino culture dancing. Although she rarely has free time anymore because she has so much homework. She told me  she also likes to have tea parties in her dorm with her friends.

While talking about tea, we found out we have both been to the little Danish town called Solvang near Santa Barbara that has cute antique shops that sell tea sets. She started telling me that there is an ostrich farm near there where you can feed ostriches, when I told her I had been there too! We laughed talking about how big, scary and aggressive the ostriches are.

Some of her favorite foods are grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup. Her favorite color used to be pink because her hair used to be dyed pink but now it is teal because her hair is teal. She told me she has been dying her hair since she was in the 2nd grade. She decided she wanted to dye her hair when she saw the show Disney 365 and a girl on the show had pink hair. She also dyed it to distinguish herself from one of her soccer teammates on the field who looked just like her at the time.

Megan has two dogs, a Husky named Yuki (Japanese for “snow”) and a Maltese named Rocky who is 11 years old. She also has really cool tattoo and is getting another this week. Overall, Megan is super cool and we had a lot in common. I look forward to getting to know her more in class.

 

Wk6-Art Experience-Zines and Flip Books

For this week’s art activity I decided to make a Zine book instead of a flip book. I was really inspired by the Zine book gallery at the CSULB student galleries this week. I saw some that were about cooking, Disneyland, and places people have traveled to. I saw one about dogs that were looking to be adopted which gave me an idea to make a zine about my dogs. I have two dogs, Jerry and Chachis. I have a lot of funny pictures of them so I decided to print them and make a zine about their lives.

I got some computer paper and some markers and put together my zine. I called it The Life of Jerry and Chachis…a dog couple. On each page I put pictures of them and wrote a little about what they are like and what they like to do together.20170305_204037

My dog Jerry is 12 years old and he is a Maltese mix. He’s extremely lazy, grumpy and snores pretty loud haha. His dog partner is my other dog Chachis. Shes a Chihuahua-Poodle mix. She’s 5 years old. They love each other very much and had puppies together a few years back. Sadly, we didn’t keep any but they have all been adopted.

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Chachis is a pretty hyperactive dog. She loves to go in my car but hates baths with a passion. It’s a struggle every time I have to bathe her.

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I especially love the pictures above of them because when they nap together, Chachis is always the big spoon and Jerry is the little spoon.¬†I had so much fun making this little book about my dogs. I couldn’t stop laughing at some of the old pictures I found of them. I think next time I’ll try to make a flip book about their lives and see how that will turn out.

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Wk6-A Short Story Inspired by Amy Williams

Exhibition Information

Artist: Amy Williams
Exhibition: MFA Ceramics
Media: Ceramics, Porcelain
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Dennis W. Dutzi Gallery

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The second I walked into Amy Williams exhibition and saw these rope-like strings hanging from the ceiling with these little pods hanging from them, it reminded me of a hammock. I know that sounds a little bit weird but I’ll explain it by telling you this story from my childhood.

When I 5 years old, my 3 other siblings and I lived in this ordinary suburban house. But our backyard had this extremely large, guitar shaped, 9 foot pool with a Jacuzzi on the side. You’d think that this was our favorite part of the backyard but it wasn’t. In fact, it was fenced shut so my younger siblings wouldn’t fall in. But we had this beautiful blue and white woven hammock hanging from one post to another from our wooden patio cover. This is where we had most of our fun in our backyard. My brother who is only about a year and a half older than me, invented this game with the hammock. He called it Rocket Ship. It wasn’t really a game, it was more like an experience.

The whole point of it was to lay on the hammock, horizontally so your full body was on it, then wrap the netting of the hammock all around yourself like you are trapped in a little pod.Then, we would start to swing the hammock back and forth slowly at first, then sped it up. While the whole time my older brother was narrating the whole thing saying “we almost have lift off.” And then he would shout, “Blast-off!” and we would spin the the hammock so hard that it was going in circles and upside down while the sibling inside screamed their head off. It was like a crazy carnival ride. When they got so dizzy and couldn’t take it any more, they would yell for it to stop and the rocket ship would finally land.

My siblings and I would spend hours playing Rocket Ship almost everyday. Until one day, the poor hammock could not take the abuse any longer. It ripped through the center during blast-off sending one of my brothers flying into outer space. He was fine, but the hammock wasn’t. It ended up looking like one of William’s art pieces. Which kind of ties in to her theme of fragility. The hammock was very fragile as we learned. The cloth ropes ripped and the hammock unwound into torn strings hanging from the top of the two poles. And with the death of the hammock, came the end of our game.

Our parents never bought us another hammock. It wasn’t until almost 15 years, and a new house later (with no pool unfortunately) that we got another hammock. This one is red and white and a lot sturdier since its made of rope. And it hangs under our wooden patio cover just like the first. But now, my siblings and I are too old and big for such games. Instead we just sit on it and swing like normal boring people do. But I’ll never forget Rocket Ship. So I thank Amy William’s exhibition for reminding me of one of my favorite childhood memories.

R.I.P. Rocket Ship.

Wk5-Art Experience- Automatic Drawing

So for this week’s art experience I roped in my sister Nathalie once again to help me out. For our materials I used the 22×30 Rives BFK paper I bought from the school’s art store. For the drawing board we didn’t have any kind of wooden board or cardboard to put our paper on, so we improvised and used my older brother’s boogie board. As for the drawing tool, we just used a regular old ¬†pencil.¬†20170226_163154

To get into the right mood, I set up some candle’s around the black mat we were going to be sitting on, turned off the lights and played some haunting music. The Civil Wars have great ominous and dark music for this kind of thing (plus, they’re also my favorite band). Then, I explained the directions to my sister again because she didn’t quite ¬†get what we were supposed to be doing. Honestly, neither did I. She was afraid we were going to summon spirits or something. Haha.

We sat cross-legged facing each other with our knees touching then placed the boogie board and paper on them. It was hard at first because it was at a bit of a slant since I’m taller and my knees stuck up more. After grabbing the pencil with both of our hands and putting it in the center of the paper, we closed our eyes. When nothing happened after like, less than a minute, we started peaking at each other through one eye and we started laughing realizing how silly this whole thing was. But after we got all the laughs out we finally focused and relaxed. That’s when the pencil started to move…

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At first we started arguing that it was one of us who was moving it but we both swore it wasn’t! It was a little scary at first because the pencil was just moving pretty much by it self. I had the lightest grip possible on the pencil so it couldn’t have been me. I kept thinking its probably my sister doing it but she insisted it wasn’t and accused me as well. We finally stopped talking and just focused on the movement of the pencil and the Civil Wars crooning their haunting lyrics in the background. The pencil moved round and round. From one corner to the other. Sometimes fast and sometimes slow. We stayed this way for about three songs when the pencil finally stopped. We opened our eyes and were really surprised at what we saw.

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At first we both expressed disappointment in what we saw. It felt like the pencil was making greater movements all over the large paper but in reality it kind of just stayed in the center. It looked kind of like Saturn. We talked about how cool it felt like some unseen force was moving the pencil but then we still accused each other of moving it. We decided to give it another try because it was honestly such a cool experience. The pencil moved again this time almost instantly and more rapidly in circles. When we opened our eyes we saw that it made almost exactly the same drawing as before just an inch higher than the first. We were amazed. Although, I think my sister was a little scared thinking it was a ghost moving our pencil. Haha. I told her to just get some holy water.

To make it look all pretty we decided to pour the candle wax on the paper. The purple lavender candles gave it a really nice color. Overall, this was a really interesting activity that I would definitely do again. I am intrigued to find out what it is that makes the pencil move.20170226_171327

Wk5- Artist Conversation-Katia Swihart

Exhibition Information

Artist: Katia Swihart
Exhibition: Description of a Struggle
Media: Color aid Paper, Origami paper, Paint, Mixed-Media
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Max L. Gatov Gallery West
Website: katiaswihartart.blogspot.com

About the Artist

Katia Swihart is a Long Beach native and has always had an interest in art since she was a child. In the 2nd grade she won an art competition at her school which motivated her to study art in college. ¬†She has attended the California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) for four years as a Studio Art major. She will be graduating this spring with her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. Swihart’s years in the fast-food service and working at a day care center inspired her to create this exhibition.

Formal Analysis

Swihart’s specialty is studio art. In this exhibition there are several canvases of many sizes and colors. On these canvases there are collages of comics, drawings and crafts made by the children she cares for. She also incorporates objects from her home and fabrics that remind her of her childhood and hold personal value to her. All these things attached to the canvas make it seem like a sculpture but Swihart intentionally painted over them to blur the lines between painting and sculpture.

Content Analysis

To create her art, Swihart channels her suppressed emotions of rage and grief. When she paints she uses those emotions to fuel her impulsive moves of her brush strokes and the colors she chooses. The colors she chose are bright but also murky to change the playful mood of children’s objects into something darker. Through her art she is trying to express her suppressed emotions caused by childhood trauma with her father. Her work focuses on her unapologetic reflection of personal anger and figuring out her identity as an artist.

Synthesis/ My Experience

Walking into Swihart’s exhibition, it was immediately clear that her art channeled strong emotions of rage. The colors she mostly used were all bright reds and oranges symbolizing anger. The blues symbolized sadness. I could tell this was a very personal representation of the artist herself. It was a little sad to see how much she has suffered and these art pieces are definitely the narratives of her experiences. However, I’m glad to see that her art is her own form of therapy for dealing with her emotions.

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