Scholarship Comes Full-Circle in High School Art Class
Posted: December 11, 2012
By Glenn W. Wright, Graphic Designer
Because of a college scholarship many years ago, I found myself back in high school art class. I had been invited to demonstrate figurative gesture drawing to David Douglas High School art students who were about to face the challenge of drawing ballet dancers as they leaped and glided across the stage.
You see, it was my high school art class that sparked my career path.
I didn’t care for school throughout secondary education and my grades showed it. I enjoyed art though, and it was my high school art teacher, Mr. Brunotte, who recognized that little crack in my resistance to learning. He proceeded to pour as much through the opening as he could. He fed my interest in art, and it grew. In the final semester of my senior year, he insisted I put together a portfolio and apply for a scholarship from The Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD) in Ohio. I cobbled together a collection of my best artwork and submitted my application. It was no surprise that I was not chosen, but fearing I would not go to college, Mr. Brunotte nudged me to apply to CCAD anyway, then rallied his colleagues to award me one of three scholarships from my high school. His perseverance paid off as I was awarded a full-year scholarship to CCAD.
In college, not only did I develop art skills, but I also discovered education: I learned that I liked learning and developed a wide range of interests – psychology, philosophy, writing and photography, as well as life drawing. I was on fire!
By the end of my first year of college, I had made the Dean’s List and a few years later, earned my bachelor’s degree in commercial art – a path that eventually led me to Mt. Hood Community College, where I am now a graphic designer in the Office of College Advancement. I typically design catalogs, brochures, class schedules and a plethora of other materials, but on weekends and evenings, I draw the figure.
For drawing ballet, I advise capturing the fluid lines created by the continuous series of gestures. Think of the line-trail a sparkler makes when you draw with it in the dark. Draw the implied lines as they twizzle and twirl, while (and here’s the tricky part) capturing some essence of the human form that creates them.
What do I think of my return to high school art class? I was delighted to offer a bit of direction and inspiration, just as Mr. Brunotte had done with me so many years ago.