An Artist's Perspective on Mindhappy

An Artist's Perspective on Mindhappy

I’ve spent the better part of my life creating. Art has played such an integral role in my life, that I am now an aspiring artist, studying digital art at the University of Alabama. Going into college as a general business major, I realized that my creativity was my greatest strength and passion and something I needed to pursue. I knew I had to change my major. I’ve been creating since I was a kid. I was ushered into our high school art program early as a middle schooler. I begged for new art supplies for every birthday as a kid. Some of my most fond memories of my adolescence are of me discovering different artistic passions. I never really realized that my love for art was something special until a special moment from my freshman year of high school. Every holiday season, different students in the art classes would create beautiful glowing winter scenes. These beautiful, festive scenes would then be projected during our music department’s big winter program. It was a way that the fine arts program created a space for the art students to be included. The scene I was given to render was a peaceful, snowy day. I rendered this serene scene with watercolor and didn’t think it was even my best work.

My art teacher was a very rare and eclectic individual. A few weeks after submitting my piece for the winter program she informed me that she chose it to be put on display in a local art show. I was so surprised. I told my mom and we immediately made plans to go and see my work on display in an official gallery. We woke up on a Saturday and went to see it. There is something really surreal and almost hard to believe about somebody else recognizing your work. I have worked as a commission artist, a full time art student, a calligrapher, a graphic designer and more. Any passion can become work when it becomes responsibility.

It has become harder over the years to balance being a full time art student and an artist for fun. Making art for deadlines and specific criteria is certainly a different experience than following wherever and whenever I am inspired on a whim. I am intentional with making sure that I am still doing what I love because I love it. This semester I have tried many different forms of art to expand the ways in which I create. I’ve dabbled in printmaking and even animation. My outlook on art changed when I encountered Mindhappy this summer.

Mindhappy is a different outlook on creativity and art. I never considered creating as a tool by which I could reconnect with myself, disconnect with my phone, and create quiet moments. College is an extremely busy time chalked full of class, work shifts after class, and maintaining a well rounded campus presence. Quiet moments are few and far between. I have gotten to create with the On-The-Go Art and Clay set. These sets have been so fun for me. I am a big lover of the outdoors and have been able to take both sets outside. Art supplies are rarely compatible with being on the go or outside. I have loved watercolor painting in the grass with the songs of birds around me instead of the hum of air conditioning or the chatter of TV. I plan to even take them with me on my next camping trip.

Mindhappy is a refreshing reminder that art is accessible to anyone whenever. It is a tool to create quiet moments in a bustling society. I hope that anyone else struggling with living too busy can experience Mindhappy and be transported back to being a kid and drawing for fun at the kitchen counter. I’ve tried so many different art forms and Mindhappy sets itself apart.

With love, Emma Mae

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