Art College Frustration and Questions
I am enrolled in Watercolor at a community college, and felt burned during our student show this week. Other students did too. I donít think we are just sore losers. They say itís full of nepotism and favoritism.
Background: I alreay have an AA from this community college from years ago, a BA in English/ history, and attended law school for a year.. I donít have that much energy or steam invested in this struggle, but am thinking of complaining about a few things. I took six hours of ceramics while working on my bachelorís. After law school about 12 years ago, I deferred a lot of my loans with art classes. Now I am just on a low income repayment plan, so itís not necessary to take six hours per semester.
I have over 30 hours of art, mostly in this community college system. I pay approx $140 for three hours in the spring and fall semesters. I get something to do, and get to use the school facilities, equipment, and studio space. I also get companionship. I have made 2 really good friends at this school.!
The universities s are further and more expensive. Anyway, I donít want to work that hard for a BFA or a MFA. So itís really on my terms.
This school has a small faculty, and the art division head is a selling artist and married to a district bigwig. My costudents say she chooses the winners, and that she can be a witch. I donít know about that. However, the piece that won Best of Show had two composited downloaded images, printed on canvas, and a few strokes of paint. Duh? Anyone can print stuff on computer! Banal and dumb!
We might need to limit the digital stuff from art school shows! Iíd like to think we are there to learn to do stuff with our own two hands! I have had two art teachers in the district who didnít even known what casein/milk paint is! What did they learn in art history?
Iíve already had a round with the dean, who is just temporary dean. He didnít want more chairs in the gallery for those of us who canít stand law. I have already forced that issue with the Americans with Disabilities Act. I have worked or state and federal agencies, and his conduct astonishes me. But Iím not sure I want to complain to him; heís not worth the energy. I've fought many more effective bureaucrats who could fight a good, decent fight! None of the students like him; hope theyíll choose someone else permanently!
What really goes on in graduate art classes? Maybe I shouldnít be in with the early students who are learning perspective, shading, etc. I enjoy being with the novices, though! I never wanted graduate school other than law school, and my health too lousy for that. I could get a BFA but that costs more! Oh sure, I could earn a 2nd degree easily. Iím an achiever. I learned a long-time ago that the universities exist for themselves, to employ teachers, etc.
I have been struggling with a skin disease for almost a decade, and then I was busy with dying family for four years. After my father passed away last year, I was finally up to returning to school. I really need to sell. Another student, also already degreed, encourages me to try etsy.
Private classes around here are more expensive for the class time than the district is! I am fundamentally self-trained, though educated, because 20 years ago, when I started seriously painting, my allergies to art stuff was pretty bad! I taught myself to paint by dribbling watercolor onto cheap copy paper. I can really mix paints and let the colors and textures run!
I have already been to a better school in the district, that has more classes, but itís further and 2 buses away. This one is the most convenient!
Do I advise art school? Yes, even in the teacher is lousy, you will still learn from the other students! I have 2 wonderful new art friends for life from here, and they are going with me to Daddy's grave soon!
When one studies art history and appreciation, one studies art as a means for protest, just like all the other protest stuff I studied in literature and history. The universities do not want you protesting against them!
I should be selling and attending local workshops and events probably!