Advanced Expressions

Shayla Jones, Staff

AP options are meant to challenge students to be better than average. They aim to inspire kids to reach higher and prepare them for success.

Most AP courses tend to lean more towards a rigorous academic involvement. AP Studio Art differs in that aspect by offering an expressive outlet for creative students while providing students with the opportunity to earn college credit. It also offers a safe space for experiment in different mediums and styles of art.

Junior Johanna Waldhalm explains her reasoning for taking the class.

“I [took AP Studio Art] to be able to practice and enhance the styles of art I love the most and have my pieces [of art] professionally critiqued by people to know where my weak points are,” Waldhalm said.

AP Studio Art, instead of a traditional exam, requires students to send in a portfolio for a critique. Waldhalm shares her inspiration for her pieces.

“[My art] was inspired by the beauty of animals and making sure that I drastically highlighted the colors of each animal to make them bounce off the page,” Waldhalm said. “Almost all of my pictures were animal based. Some were given human aspects such as a smile, clothes or hands to try and make a fun character filled with emotion and life.”

Waldhalm’s interest, though new, sparked a fire for her and showed her what she wants to do with the rest of her life.

“I got interested in art because some of my favorite movies and shows were animated or drawn and I realized at 12-years-old that I wanted to create animated shows like that. I wanted to make beautiful pieces of art that are beautiful and inspiring,” Waldhalm said.

Junior Maiah Luke expresses her reasoning behind taking the class.

“Joining AP Studio Art meant I could push myself and my skills. I enjoyed seeing how I could grow and build my style. Also, it was a class I was able to experiment in and work with different mediums of art,” Luke said.

Luke used graphite as a medium, which is pencil drawings. Luke expresses that she favors this as a medium.

“I like pencil drawings because they are easier to control and gain the effects I wanted within my pieces,” Luke said.

Deadlines can be stressful for anyone but with students in AP courses, their test dates or portfolio due date can begin to fray one’s mind. Luke shares her experience and her feelings as the deadline crept closer.

“As the deadline [for my portfolio] got closer I became frazzled because I realized I was not ready and I would doubt my drawings and paintings,” Luke said.

Inspiration can come from anything, even hands, which is where Luke drew inspiration from to create her portfolio.

“My inspiration [for my pieces] all depended on what the portion of the portfolio asked for my concentration, which consisted of 12 cohesive pictures. I wanted to focus on the idea that hands are able to convey a person’s emotions and thoughts through action. The breathe portion consisted of many different ideas. It was mainly what I saw and/or felt at the time,” Luke said.

Senior Alejandro Mendoza, who has been producing art work for the last eight years, shares his reasoning behind signing up for AP Studio Art.

“I took AP Studio Art to challenge myself and my art to make my artwork better in quality and have the skills to increase quantity as quickly as possible,” Mendoza said.

Mendoza has been interested in art from a young age. Mendoza offers his first experience with art and how it changed him.

“[I first got interested in art on] my fourth grade trip to a real art museum. I got fixated on how artists manipulated pens, pencils, etc. to generate three dimensional pictures and ideas on a two dimensional surface,” Mendoza said.

Mendoza pulled inspiration from online sources as well as famous artists.

“For my concentration I was inspired by Alphonso Dunn, a Youtube artist, who creates life-like figures using pen and ink. For the others, they were mainly idea and concept art from other artists, such as the ‘Cavalier of Death’ by Salvador Dali,” Mendoza said.