Humanities East hallway hosts artist highlights

Posted on 07 November 2017 by Ian Schrauth

Art students showcase work, talk to recruiters for annual portfolio day


By: Melissa Wilkinson


Candy wasn’t the only thing on the minds of art students this Halloween.

Tuesday, Oct. 31 marked the date for Meramec’s annual portfolio day, an event in which art students of all types take over the hallways of the Humanities East building with eye-catching displays of their own artwork. Students sign up for short windows to show their work to recruiters from local art schools like UMSL, Webster and Fontbonne. Recruiters entertain questions about their respective art programs, offer feedback on student work and try to attract students to their schools.PortfolioDay

“[Our recruiters] are looking for students who are interested in a wide variety of art,” said Andrea Bluhm, Transfer Admission Counselor at Fontbonne. “Some of Fontbonne’s specialties are in figurative art as well as in painting and sculpture.”

Two of Fontbonne’s faculty members and one graduate student made their appearance at portfolio day as recruiters. Bluhm, who is often on Meramec’s campus to talk with students about transferring to Fontbonne, said that her recruiters were trying to get a feel for which students would be right for their school.

“We have very small class sizes, lots of opportunities to work alongside our grad students. We are a liberal arts university so our students will be taking a wide variety of courses, not just art,” said Bluhm.

Some students, like Jessica King, have been at Meramec for several semesters and are preparing to transfer to a four-year school. King said she participated in portfolio day with the goal of learning more about schools where she might consider transferring.

“UMSL told me a lot about their art program and going forward after I’m done,” said King. “I like the way [they] spoke to me so I’m going to find out more about them now.”

Others, like first semester student Andrew Lowry, joined in for an honest critique of his work and to get a feel for what four-year colleges are looking for in potential students. Lowry said he learned how to improve himself for next year by looking at the displays of other students.

“I was thinking, “What are [the recruiters] going to like?” Well, I’ll just buy some middle school poster board from Walgreens, they’re gonna get a real kick out of that,” said Lowry. “But obviously no one else did that. Maybe next time I’ll bring something better than a piece of cardboard.”

Lowry said he decided he wanted to be an artist one year ago, and although most of the pieces he had on display were traditional art, his real passion is digital.

“I’ve always been pretty good at comic book and cartoon stuff. I know how to use graphic programs,” said Lowry. “Every time I’m in [a traditional art] class I wish I could Control-Z.”

Lowry said while he feels more confident in his digital art, he’s happy with the traditional work he’s done in class. Although he still has many classes to take at Meramec, Lowry is already thinking about a potential career as a freelance artist.

“It’s nice to like what you do,” said Lowry.




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