The final finals week is here, and the general consensus around campus is “ugh.” There are few smiles to be found; the passionate gleam of inspiration in the eye has long since faded.
After spending more than three years studying art, working at an art college, living on an art school campus, and spending all my free time making art, I am constantly surrounded by art and artists, and constantly creating and studying art. What had started, as a hobby I did for fun and relaxation has become my entire life. I have to put in a obligatory disclaimer; I love art and there’s nothing else I’d rather do for the rest of my life. However, it no longer just a relaxing hobby, it is work. And finals at art college are definitely hard work. The deadlines are tight and the projects are monumental. Combined with lack of sleep and constant stress, finals can be stressful, overwhelming, and the polar opposite of relaxing and inspiring.
To stay inspired during these times, I like to take a step back from my work and examine why I am here and why I am putting myself through all this stress and mayhem. OF course, the short story here is that I love art and blah blah blah. But more specifically, I find finals time to be a great time to look back on what inspired me to make art, what I came to art school to do, and what I want to do after I graduate. I rewatch cartoons that inspired me, I look through old art books and comics that I had bought when I was younger, I look through some of my favorite artists blogs and websites. I write down short term and long term career and academic goals, I brainstorm ideas for future projects I want to do when finals are done, I sketch old OCs I made in middle school and feel proud at how far I’ve come. Anything and everything to get inspired and kick finals in the butt.
Go out and get inspired! While finals can be a lot work, don’t forget that you’re here because, despite it all, you love it.
Cailey is a senior illustrator major, RA, president of the Illustration Student Collective, comic artist, and cat enthusiast. She also probably needs a nap. You can view her work on her website http://caileytervo.com/