Transferring

 

Have you spent the last 2 years looking ahead, knowing exactly what school you want to go to or are you currently completely lost with graduation steadily approaching, having no clue what to do? Hopefully, you fall somewhere in the middle! [although the first option doesn't sound too bad...] Transferring can be a nerve wrecking process that leaves students in limbo until those magnificent envelopes arrive to alleviate your anxiety, letting you know if you were accepted into your schools of choice.

I’m going to let you in on a little secret: everyone who has gone to college has gone through this!
While not all students transfer, all college students still apply, send all their necessary documents, collect recommendations and await a reply.

There are a number of things you can do to prepare yourself for transferring! Not only is it a good idea to look into schools early, but make sure your grades are something you’re proud to send off to schools. Be aware that your choices here really do make a difference. Doing well at CCBC gives you a better edge when it comes to the next step school! It’s no secret that schools like students who show clear dedication to their studies!

To give you a basic idea of what you can do: Last year, I attended the transfer fair on the Essex campus, came to some information sessions hosted by the Honors Program, and toured 12 schools. I applied to 10 schools, sent out transcripts galore, asked professors, advisers and friends for advice and some of them for recommendations. While I know I prepared all I could, I’m still in the same boat waiting for those responses.

Even if you aren’t graduating in the Spring, I highly suggest you attend information sessions, transfer fairs and attend campus tours. A school can look great on paper, but when you’re on campus you get a whole other vibe. Or the opposite can happen and you can find a school where you fit in perfectly! In either case, isn’t it better to know early than to spend time and energy preparing to transfer to a Wrong Fit School? Thankfully, CCBC offers some great information throughout the year and holds transfer fairs every semester!

The transfer fairs happening in March are:

Catonsville
Wednesday, March 26, 2014
Location: Student Services Center, Room 100
10:00 AM – 1:00 PM
Dundalk
Tuesday, March 25, 2014
Location: College Community Center, 1st Floor lobby
10:00 AM – 1:00 PM
Essex
Monday, March 24, 2014
Location: College Community Center, 2nd floor lobby
10:00 AM – 2:00 PM

For more information, check out the other events, college visits and support available at  http://www.ccbcmd.edu/advising/transfer_events.html

Reception

The things I want to say to you get lost before my mouth opens.

What a reception! I am quite happy to report that the opening reception of Becoming 2014 transfer student show was a total blast! The artists were dressed to impressed [I know I was!!] and the range of attendees showed the true support that our fine artists have. Walking around the work, an electricity flowed. Added to the nervous excitement of the student artists, the incredible pride of the families, friends and professors in attendance burst from the gallery, flowing into the open studios.

Entitled “Power” my 8 foot sculpture is more than just a dying sapling. With a truly interactive ability, patrons are encouraged to choose a word that is particularly powerful to them, write it on one of the provided tags and hang it on a branch. Showing the true weight of these words [which are in essence just a pattern of letters] and providing a cathartic experience for someone who may be struggling with a term of their own, this piece was just as important to my own mental health. Like an overwhelming amount of people, I’ve wrestled with labels and words since childhood. Some words still sting today, but by hanging it on the tree, some of that pain dissipated. Stepping back and realizing that at the end of the day a word only means what we let it mean, we can reclaim some of the power that we’ve given up so freely.

Now that the big night has passed, all the anxiety and pressure to have a finished piece has been lifted. The hours spent in the cold pouring concrete, in the Fab Lab cutting tags, painting & tying jute onto every single tag… it was all worth it. Having so many people add their own selves to my work has connected me to people I’d never have met, people I didn’t know as well and even let me see a new side of people I’ve known my whole life.

If you didn’t get a chance to attend the reception, never fear! This show will run until March 1st, leaving plenty of time for you to get up to Catonsville. The Gallery will be open Monday – Friday from 10 to 5 and Saturdays from 10 to 3! Stop by and let me know what you think!

Returning

Nervousness

That morning, every light was green. Even this sign couldn’t alleviate the anxiety building up inside me. The butterflies had found their home in my stomach and I thought they would never leave. I got lost trying to find parking and it wasn’t until the next week that I realized there were parking lots all around campus. With a print out of my schedule clenched in my shaking hands, I stepped onto unfamiliar ground and tried to make the best of the day. It was one of the 2 days per week I had scheduled to be off work. Even after telling my staff that I would be in classes every Tuesday and Thursday for the weeks leading up to that day, I got a call just as I was about to enter my first classroom. Helping one of my employees over the phone work through her confusion with the morning paperwork distracted me from the emotional roller coaster I had been riding all morning.

Whether it was the fear of failure, the realization of what I had really signed up for or looking into a sea of teenagers that scared me most, I couldn’t tell you. But when I made the decision to return to school, nothing could have prepared me for where I am now. With the love and support of my husband, I took on 5 classes and my 50+ hour workload as a Store Manager. I’ve always been a hard worker, with a “can’t stop, won’t stop” spirit so it made perfect sense and seemed completely doable. As my darling dearest can tell you, that semester included many sleepless nights, a coffee table full of math homework and weekly sales reports. My phone’s calendar was constantly pinging with reminders of projects due, employee issues and updates on the latest products for that competitive edge needed to have the store stay profitable. It really became a blur of driving, homework and store meetings. The week after finals, I drove to school on auto pilot, walking almost halfway to my class before realizing the semester was over.

It was definitely a much different experience than I had when I was 16. I knew people in my classes, I was already familiar with the campus and I treated each class like a joke. Even with this comfort, I didn’t feel like I belonged and ultimately parted ways with AACC. I had originally been a part of dual enrollment when I was in high school and attended the local community college. It wasn’t a good fit and at the time it made more sense in my nonsensical mind to go to work and make money. It wasn’t until moving to Middle River that I considered going back to school. Being in the unique position to know both sides, I understand the struggles of being a young student and an older student. While most wouldn’t think of 26 as being old, consider that I’m 8 years older than the typical student in their first year of college. I’m 10 years older than the PEP students. While not in a mid-life career change, I did leave the career I was in to better myself and return to school. It just happens that I worked hard and achieved a stable career in my early 20′s.

Originally feeling isolated on campus and utterly confused, I seek out others that feel the same. I wish someone had been able to identify a lost girl when I was first starting out. I wouldn’t say that I wasted time, but life would be much different if I felt like I had a cheerleader in my corner. By joining several programs at CCBC, I’ve been able to provide that for many students. Meeting some in classes, some at club meetings, or while working an event as a Student Ambassador, I’ve found new friends and people that know they can rely on me. By doing so much, I’ve learned an incredible amount and become the go to girl for just about anything, even hugs! Some days you just need a hug~I know I do from time to time! (Dani is one of my favorite go-to’s for those!)

If there’s ever a time that you feel overwhelmed, alone or bored, I truly suggest that you get involved. It’s changed my school experience drastically. The Office of Student Life has a listing of some of the great clubs on campus, information of upcoming events and the Mentors that work in that office can help you with so much. From being lost on campus to personal issues, they tackle it all. I guess that’s why some of them call me a mentor at heart ^.^ Just know there are people here that truly care, people you can go to with a variety of problems.

Now I want to hear from you! What was your first day of school like? What was the greatest challenge you faced that first week and how were you able to overcome it?

Welcome Back!

Greetings my lovelies! So nice to be back! Whether you spent it in an accelerated winter course, traveled to somewhere new or stayed home playing video games, I sincerely hope you had a productive and fun break.

I’m quite excited to tell you all about the Transfer Show opening January 27! This competitive gallery show at the Catonsville Gallery will feature student artists covering multiple mediums.Running from January 27th until February 28th, there is PLENTY of time to get down to the gallery and very little excuse!

I have a large scale interactive sculpture in this show that I hope each and every one of you will participate! Challenging the power of words, I’m sure you will find this piece cathartic and interesting. I’ll be taking pictures on a weekly basis of the progress, so be sure to come down to the gallery and add your own piece to the sculpture! Sorry to be so cryptic, but I can’t give all my secrets away ;)

Thanksgiving

I hope you all had an absolutely wonderful break! With all that time, hopefully you were able to get everything you wanted to done! I for one really needed that break. While it comes at a strange time (with one week of classes left then finals… eeek!) those 3 days were absolutely necessary. I’ve been running around like a chicken with my head cut off the past 2 weeks and it was nice to be able to sit back, assess my upcoming tasks and start knocking them out! It was a blur of knitting, reading and photo editing… all of which are for school! (I really cannot say how much I love being an art major. Have you ever heard of a biology major knitting a yarn monster for class? Me neither…)

Thanksgiving dinner is divided for me into my mother’s side of the family on Thursday and then my favorite dinner of the year at my parent’s house with my father’s side of the family on Sunday. Mom extended the invitation to some friends of mine this year and they got to celebrate with us! After the tasty dinner, we relaxed with some wine, pie and a couple rounds of Outburst. Such a nice and much needed evening! No matter how you celebrate, I hope you had good food, spent quality time with people you care about and got to relax, if only for the post meal nap.

During my time over the break, I did a lot of reflecting on this year so far. Sometimes I get so caught up in what the next thing I’m doing is that I don’t get a chance to just sit back and think about just how lucky I am and how far I’ve come… despite the long journey ahead. So much has happened so quickly, leaving me with quite a bit to cover. While the pains of the year still sting, sometimes more than they should, I cannot imagine what life would be without the hurt. I am thankful for the bad times, as they make me appreciate the good that much more. The people in my life are so important, each and every person meaning somethign different. I am thankful for the pain from losing a loved one, as it proves how much that person meant to me. The hard assignments don’t bother me as much, knowing returning to school is one of the greatest gifts I’ve ever received. There’s so much to be thankful for, that at the end of the day I can’t help but be thankful. Being thankful isn’t something that should be limited to a single day! Make sure you let those around you know what they mean to you!

Thank you always for your time and for being a reader! If there’s ever anything you’d like to say, never hesitate!

You’re an art major? Draw me something!

Being a fine arts major can be one of the hardest things to do. While many people think that it’s a continuation of the art classes they had in elementary school, nothing could be further from the truth. There are an unfortunate amount of misconceptions about art students and I’d like to take some time to set the record straight on some of them… or at least how I see it.

1. Every art student knows exactly what medium they like to work in. Incorrect. One of the hardest things about exploring your artistic side is finding what areas of art you like. There are so many different mediums (drawing, painting, ceramics, photography, etc) with an infinite amount of subcategories (photojournalism, pottery, figural sculpture, etc.) and shocker: not everyone is good at everything. Honing your skills in the right area not only takes time, but it can be really hard to find what you’re most passionate about. I have a hard time with this. While I absolutely adore photography, I am mesmerized by throwing clay on a wheel and weaving. But that’s what introductory classes are for. Exploring the options enough that you can rule it out or continue on.

2. Every art student can draw. Uhhh… no. Illustrators are amazing, but for many fine artists, it’s just not a skill that has been perfected. Speaking solely for myself- I really hate drawing. Yes, it’s an incredibly valuable skill to be able to draw, even in sculpture classes, but drawing is so much more than just putting together shapes. Rendering an object in different styles, value and even different mediums (ink, charcoal, graphite etc…) can be really hard.

3. Art students are crazy and think floating plastic bags are beautiful. We’re not all crazy… we just see things differently. So yeah, sometimes we can look at a piece of trash and find an aesthetic within it, a deeper meaning.. but not all the time.

4. We love doing “favors” i.e. Could you do this for me real quick, and free? Being able to fund your passions can be an incredibly difficult thing to do, especially when trying to establish yourself as an artist. You may have a friend who draws balloons really well and want them to draw a card for your niece on her birthday… great idea right? And you’d ask to get it for free or super cheap right? While having an artist for a friend can be great, please don’t assume that they can/will do things for you for free and/or so close to free your wallet doesn’t even notice. Like many, I strongly believe “I am an artist. This does not mean I will work for free. I have bills just like you. Say no to artist exploitation and piracy!” This doesn’t mean we don’t love what we do or that we’re high and mighty. We just have the same monetary obligations any other person does… just without a 9 to 5 job to rely on in most cases.

5. We don’t know how to do anything that isn’t art related. “ You should get some solid skills.” I actually had a woman say this to me. She continued to relentlessly tell me that I would never get a job and that I should abandon my passion for a degree in something with some “solid skills” so I was more marketable. (For the record, her “solid skill” suggestion has the highest unemployment rate for degree holders…) It’s just unbelievable. To even speak to someone you don’t know and belittle their goals and dreams… I just… I can’t. I don’t even have the words to say how rude and hurtful it is to have people put down your goals. If anything, people should be supporting the arts. Without the arts, the world is a cold and uncreative place. EVERYTHING is designed. From the food we eat to the plates we eat it on… the computers we type on to the homes we live in… everything was designed. Maybe not by someone who considers themselves an artist, but trust me, they an artist.

6. It’s so fun and easy! Yes… it’s so easy that I’m choosing to spend years of my life learning how to create fine art. Come on… While it can be fun, most people don’t see the hours spent working on a single painting, the painful stretches needed after editing 200 photos in a single night, the time spent alone in a studio. Art students not only have to be able to create on cue, often with little to no direction, but they have to manage one of the most hectic schedules imaginable. Without my agenda, I wouldn’t be able to make heads or tails of each day…

7. You must not have been very good in school. Art majors are some of the most intelligent problem solvers I’ve ever met. Just because we’re not physics majors, doesn’t mean we aren’t smart enough to be. I know several fine arts majors that are members of the honors program, myself included. Implying that we aren’t smart is one of the most insulting things you can say. Please, please, PLEASE don’t do it.

Just use common sense. We’re just like everyone else. We just might see the world in a different light, or at least want to capture it. <3

November Honors Program Events

The Essex Honors program is halfway into their month of fun events! If you haven’t joined us yet, please register for the workshop on tips for writing an effective college essay with English professor and Book Club faculty member Carr Kizzier on November 18th. All events listed in the flyer take place in ADMN 130 [formerly J 130] Also~don’t forget to register for your Spring 2014 classes! Get a jump on the semester by registering early and ensuring that you get the classes you want to take at the times you’d like to take them!

Dia De Los Muertos Art Show

Hey guys! So the 2nd annual Dia De Los Muertos art show was on the 2nd and the turnout was great! Thank you to everyone who came, send their love and support, and especially those who purchased local artist’s work. I wanted to share some pictures from this fun event. Enjoy :)

Me with some of my pieces in the show. The photos above and the direct right of me are mine, as is the graffiti piece next to my elbow.

Me with the shop owner and curator of the show.

With one of my oldest friends enjoying the atmosphere of the restaurant. This no parking sign was on the wall behind our table.

My camera icon sugar skull [left] and Professor David Zobel’s illustrated skull [right]

 

Some of the skulls that were available in the silent auction. Proceeds benefited the Kennedy Kreiger Institution.

 

I’m looking forward to next year’s show and I hope to see you there!

Halloween!

I LOVE Halloween… I was lucky enough to wake up early last Thursday and watch the Nightmare Before Christmas, as I do every Halloween and Christmas. Then it was off to school for a day of classes and celebrations with friends, classmates and faculty! Please enjoy this photographic adventure of part of my Halloween fun!

My girls, Jessica Wood (dressed as Nicki Minaj) and Liz Kardos (dressed as Jeffrey Dahmer)

 

Jessica and I with Yuvonne Morris. We’re her crazy girls <3

 

Art Major Kendra Morris made a great Black Swan!

 

Professor Sharon Trumbull took the time to appreciate that others also dress up for Halloween, no matter their physical or mental age!

 

The Defender of the Night with the Defenders of CCBC! Eric Gardner and Don Knowles made sure everyone was safe and happy this Halloween.

 

I don’t know about you, but I am a HUGE fan of The Lonely Island. This student dressed as one of the characters from their videos.

 

Liz & Don enjoying the festivities at the Multi-Cultural Student Association’s Halloween Bash.

 

The students really loved the music, dancing for hours on end!
Unfortunately, the rest of the shots didn’t come out as I wanted so this ends my camera’s adventures for the day…

Art Show!

In perfect timing for Halloween, the 2nd annual Dia De Los Muertos Charity Art Show is this Sunday, November 3rd!  Enjoy the amazing food at Michael’s Cantina while checking out pieces from local artists. In addition to being able to purchase artwork, in some cases directly from the artist, there will be a silent auction featuring custom designed sugar skulls from tattoo artists. All proceeds will benefit the Kennedy Kreiger Institution!

Miguel’s Cantina is located at 1700 Beason (For GPS), Baltimore, Maryland 21230.    Actual address is1200 Steuart St, baltimore 21230. Check out their website to get a peek at their menu full of delicious and authentic food! http://www.miguelsbaltimore.com/
Full hours are from 12-10. There will be kid’s activities and face painting! And for the young at heart, wear your sugar skull makeup and get entered to win a raffle for a $100 tattoo or your choice of a raffle basket. Come for any amount of time and check out local artists work!

Yours truly has some photographic work in the show this year, as well as a ceramics piece that was created on campus! In the true spirit of including everyone, there are family hours from Noon to 5, with the total event ending at 10. Come and join us!

As an added incentive: here’s a sneak peek at one of my pieces! It’s not the full image…. just a teaser :P   (Don’t steal my images. If you’d like a copy, come to the show! Prints will be available!)