Winter Session at El Camino

Like most schools, El Camino College is experiencing annoying cutbacks in every area relevant to students – class size and availability, cuts to entire programs and sessions, etc.  For instance, this year’s Winter Intersession is our last.  They will not be offering it again, at least not for the foreseeable future.  I tried to register for a Winter class, but, of course, everything was full.

So, imagine my surprise when I showed up last Wednesday to try to weasel my way into a class and it worked!  I am now enrolled in Portfolio and Career Planning for Artists and Designers.  So far, I love it!  We meet every weekday morning except Friday to discuss personal presentation, portfolio and career issues, and transferring to 4-year universities.  Our homework was to research 3 jobs and 3 schools and find out what their requirements and scholarship availability are.

The schools I chose were Kansas City Art Institute, California College of the Arts, and Laguna College of Art and Design.  All three colleges offer generous scholarships.  However, considering how expensive their tuitions are, the total becomes only slightly less than a state school – IF you get the maximum scholarship, which is “merit-based”.  The definition of merit seems to vary per school but is generally associated with the strength of your portfolio.  Of the three schools, LCAD is the cheapest at $23,730 per year while CCA tips the scales at $36,960 per year; KCAI fits neatly in the middle at $30, 762 per year.

So, I guess only rich people get to become artists!  At least those coming out of the stable of art schools in this country.  Fortunately, I have abundant faith in myself, and my talents, and believe I will be successful with or without any official documents from the art academic elite.  Art comes from the soul and mine is rich with unique experiences.

Since my Winter class is not an art class, per se, most of the work I have done has been on my own.  I’ve been sketching comics and trying to develop story lines.  My favorite story line so far is for a character named Aliesha who is a divorced single mom whose ex-husband has kidnapped her two children.  She goes around the country trying to locate them, saving and helping random children along the way.  She is Supermom when she transforms into her superhero persona; she is nanny Aliesha during the day.  The family she works for has two sons who remind her of the sons she has lost.  I’m still working on the story, including what her superpowers will be and how exactly she acquires them, but at least I’ve got a start.  The other 2 comics I did are stand-alones.

I hope all you burgeoning artists are working on your crafts as well.  As much fun as it is to read about and look at art, there is no substitute for doing the work!

Now, go follow your bliss…

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