Amy is a 17-year-old high school student and artist from South Carolina, USA. After she graduates high school, she plans on going to college for an art related career.
The Significance of Art in My Life
Art plays a significant role in my life. It has helped shape who I am today. I am always working hard to advance my skills and to prepare myself for a future art career. Ever since I was a kid, I have always had a passion for art. At first, I thought it was just fun and exciting activity I enjoyed doing during my free time. I really enjoyed my elementary school art classes and practiced a lot on my own. Eventually I realized my improvement every time I practiced, causing curiosity in me to see how much my skills could develop. I would look at pictures for references, and I would draw what I would see. Although the repetitiveness became tiring, the continued improvement of my drawings sparked my interest in pursuing a career in art.
As I got older, I became more dedicated to art, wanting to learn as much as possible and to develop my skills as quickly as possible. I wanted to try new mediums, new techniques, and styles. I started taking private art lessons when I was in middle school, taking my self-taught skills and advancing them. During these private lessons, I learned how to draw with techniques such as gesture drawing, and I developed my knowledge of perspective and anatomy. An additional skill I began to perfect was drawing from life. I learned how to use different types of paints, chalks, colored pencils and other mediums. While I was taking these lessons, I was still practicing on my own, drawing whenever I could. I began improving faster than ever before giving me a confidence in my work that I’d never felt previously. Eventually, I had to end these lessons, so I continued teaching myself on my own. I was inspired by my private art teacher to start selling some of my artwork. He told me, “It’s good to start at a young age, to get yourself out there and to make connections.” With my self-taught skills, I then started a small business taking commissions and used the money I earned from them to pay for the art supplies I use.
When I entered high school, I started participating in art competitions. I found out all my hard work had paid off because I won the school district art show three years in a row and I even won first place in the Congressional Art Show this year which means that my art piece is being displayed in the United States Capitol. The pride and confidence I gained in my work from winning these shows was incredible. Now my focus is creating my art portfolio. Because I am at a small school, the school does not offer any AP art classes or have an art club. However, I am not letting that prevent me from improving my skills and being prepared to apply to colleges. With the help of my supportive high school art teacher, I’m learning as many mediums as I possibly can such as: oil painting, digital art, printmaking, and even animation so I can add variety to my skills. I often watch hours of YouTube videos from some of my favorite artists in order to teach myself a new medium. To further expand my skill set, I suggested to my art teacher to assign me AP art projects. Even though I won’t receive any AP credits for those projects, they are a new way I’ve found to challenge myself and expand my capabilities.
Being an artist has shaped the person I am today. Seeing my hard work pay off with the improvement of my art and my success at art shows, I am now motivated to continue being diligent with my work. Overcoming the challenges I’ve been presented so far with pursuing my dream of becoming a professional artist has made me a more independent person. I will continue my hard work to build my portfolio so I can attend a premier art college to pursue a career as an artist.
One of Amy's paintings titled Lady in the Lake. It is currently being displayed in the United States Capitol. If you want to see more of her work you can check out her instagram @amy_foos_
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