I spent the summer of almost 8 years ago at UNCSA's intensive art camp at UNCSA. It was the summer before senior year, and I hadn't drawn or painted in years; in fact, I was considering pursuing a career as a pediatrician or a 3D developer. I had already taken classes and attended camps prior to that moment, so I assumed it was a done deal. Initially, I planned to attend a two-week intensive animation class where we would be trained by industry pros, including the head art director of one of the Transformers movies. However, for some reason, I chose the four-week intense studio camp instead.
Whatever the case may have been, it was well worth the investment. I'd never had so much fun or experienced so much artistic growth in my life.
It's worth noting that I hadn't taken a drawing or painting lesson in years, and yet there I was. I was surrounded by folks who were highly skilled and had good hearts. We were all aiming to be the greatest versions of ourselves while encouraging one another.
I recall waking my mother up early so that I could get to my studio courses on time, and I would always remain late with the other artists to complete projects. In the studio, we'd listen to music and dance, give each other critiques and share words of encouragement. The energy in the studio was contagious and I loved every minute of it.
There are a few things from that month that I'll never forget.
The satisfaction of being surrounded by other artists who are all working hard to realize their aspirations.
I can still smell the graphite.
I can still taste the oreo milkshakes.
Hear our laughter from bus trips to galleries.
One of my most treasured memories is from that time.
Now, at the lovely age of 24, I yearn for that experience all over again, but this time for it to last a lifetime.