Finding the Good in the Bad

This past weekend was absolutely the most life-taking experience from this past week. It wasn’t life-taking in the sense that I felt discouraged or particularly heavy-hearted. But in the literal sense, that afterward, I felt life draining from me. I was on duty on both Friday and Saturday nights, which meant that I had to stay in my room. I invited the girls on my floor and my staff to join me for a movie, but everyone was busy doing things for Family Weekend. So I sat. And did homework. In my room. By myself. From 7 pm to midnight, Friday AND Saturday. By 9pm on Saturday, I began to realize just how much of an extrovert I am. As someone who gets energy from being with other people, I was left without anyone to give me energy. By 9:30 on Saturday, I began wishing that it were midnight already. I was physically tired and wanting to sleep, but I was also tired of waiting to see if someone would come to visit me. What a relief when the clock struck 12.

This life-taking experience allowed me to have my most life-giving experience, though. I spoke with one of my art professors one afternoon about my weekend, mentioning how my extrovertedness became quite evident. He seemed surprised that I was an extrovert, not for the same reason my communications professor was surprised, but because he has the tendency to think of artists as introverts. There’s a stereotypical image of the lonesome artist, brooding in some corner and working happily in solitude. But as is the case with stereotypes, it doesn’t apply to all people. My professor mentioned a book called “Born Under Saturn”, in which the author explores the concept of the “artist personality”, but in the end concludes that there is no single personality shared by all artists. It was through this conversation with my professor that I started to wonder, perhaps I should also explore this concept for my senior show… I have thought for a few weeks that I wanted to explore the stereotype that artists are bad at math and somehow prove through my art that I am not. But now I realize there are so many more stereotypes about artists that are constantly broken, especially by the artists at Messiah. I have so many ideas running through my mind and for the first time this year, I feel like I have a sense of direction for senior show. I’m still trying to come up with more ideas and create an image in my mind of what I want this to look like, but I have quite some time for things to make sense. What stereotypes about artists can you think of?

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