You could say I’ve been artistically inclined my whole life. My earliest memories involving creating art are from elementary school, when I would spend hours drawing on lined loose-leaf with my number 2 Ticonderoga. Back then it was all about monsters and dragons and swords and magic. Sadly, very little from that era is recorded electronically. Although I enjoyed art, in grade school the sciences were always my strong suite. Hence how I ended up at WPI as a freshman studying chemical engineering. Then, one cathartic summer later, I was a sophomore doing an IMGD/CS double major. Speaking of CS, sophomore year was also the first time I ever coded. Somehow, for 19 years, I had avoided doing something productive on the machines I spend so much time around. During this time my most notable artistic pursuit was creating animal-themed vector graphic wallpapers for myself and a few friends.
But it was only last year that I rediscovered my old passion when I transferred from IMGD tech to art. That summer I finished a long overdue project for a friend of mine, a musician going by the name Altona Meadows.
My junior year was without a doubt the most creatively fulfilling year of my life so far. That year I was introduced to everything from Photoshop and Zbrush to Maya and 3DS Max. My creative juices were once again flowing:
Away from the computer, I also like to go indoor rock climbing (bouldering). What does that have to do with anything? Good question. I’d say that, in many cases, bouldering involves creatively figuring out how to position and move your body to climb a wall. It’s creative problem solving made physical (a route up the wall is even called a “problem”).
Like many IMGD students, I can attest to the long lab hours, sleepless nights, and bad BO that one must endure to get work done. But when things get tough, what keeps me inspired is the idea that art–in all its many forms–is the beauty that cuts through the ugliness of the world. When work becomes tedious, I like to take a step back, and realize that, while I’m probably not the next Picasso, I’m nonetheless making the world just a little bit more beautiful.