What/ Who First Inspired You Artistically?

Ever since I was extremely young, I have been artistic. (Or at least that is what I have been told) I picked up on painting, drawing, and being creative very quickly. Still to this day when I go to restaurants, I draw on the back of placemats.

Because family members and friends had always told me that I was talented and such a good artist, I began to get a big head. I was never rude about it, but I now knew that I was good. Once I started going to school, my art teacher noticed that I was good. I do not really remember what happened in detail from kindergarten through third grade in art class, but I do remember that I always did well. When I got into fourth grade, that is when the projects started to get more complicated and my art teacher started to challenge me.

In fourth and fifth grade, we would have projects that were assigned for the weekend and were due the following week. I loved this. It was just another excuse for me to use my artistic ability and creativity. Most of the projects were drawing still life’s from observation. I was still being praised for my good work and “perfection”. This is when I started to slack off.

There came a time when my art teacher started to do critiques, verbal critiques. Overall, I usually did pretty well on the projects. When she did point out that I did not work well on something or that there was something lacking, it really did hurt me. Not only did my grade on the project suffer, but this was the first time that someone was criticizing me. This had never happened. I took it really strongly at first and I was very upset. Little did I know that she was only helping me.

From that point on, I stepped up my work. I took her critiques to heart so I could progressively improve. I strived for my best and she could tell. She was my hero. I was so inspired by her. She always challenged me and that is what I needed to keep me going.

During my fifth grade year, i found out that she was retiring. This crushed me. One of my most favorite people in the world was leaving me.I knew that I would have to make this year really count. That is exactly what I did. I enjoyed every moment of art class. I retained every detail she told me. I respected her so much and hated to see her go.

This story actually has a happy ending. My art teacher missed being a teacher and became a substitute teacher for my high school several years later. Last year, I was talking to her about college. It turns out that she went to Kent State too! Who would have thought that I would be following in her footsteps.

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