How do you come up with ideas? Tips from our BFA students

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Friday, July 10th, 2015

The current exhibition in PCA&D’s gallery, Selected Artworks from the BFA Program at PCA&D, features a selection of outstanding artwork created by our rising junior and senior BFA students. A wide variety of media are represented including digital and hand-painted illustration, sculpture, painting, printmaking, photography and graphic design.

Q: What does the process of making art mean to you?

  • Alexandria Bonner, Fine Art ‘16: Art making is about creating complex beauty in simple materials. It’s the sharing of an idea to others.
  • selected_works_sarah_PietrowskiKatherine Stratis, Illustration ‘16: Everyone has two selves- one that the world sees, and the other that resides only inside their mind. Art is a way for me to express that innermost self- a way to make the visions and worlds inside my mind an expression that others can share and experience too.
  • Sarah Pietrowski , Photography ‘16: The process of making art allows me to capture a small moment in time and share it with others.  
  • David Billett, Photography ‘17: I don’t really think of it as a process, I don’t like to work in stages. For me I start with an idea and go from there. I don’t usually know where I’m going to end up and yet alone know how I’m going to get there. I don’t know if that really answers the question. I’m still in the process of figuring out my groove.
  • Rebecca Lerch, Illustration ’16: The journey from an idea to the finished piece can be as different as each individual’s walk in life. Each time I make art, I must remind myself that it is a unique experience that requires an open and sensitive mindset to properly convey my thoughts through the work.
  • Trayton Pinson, Photography ‘17: The process of art to me is finding/exploring a unique way to communicate in a universal unspoken language in order to better express my thoughts, ideas, and emotions.

How do you come up with ideas for your work?

  • Lauryn_Watkins-1 Lauryn Watkins, Illustration ‘16: Like many other art students, I have a sketchbook. When I’m coming up with ideas I usually sketch out the general idea of what I see in my head and go from there. Thumbnails are also a usual starting point for things such as environments or layouts for an advertisement.  After I’m happy with what I’ve come up with and I pick a design, I draw it in pencil and then ink it by hand. After inking I scan it and then do all the coloring, shading, and effects in photoshop or any other program that I need to finish the piece.
  • Alexsis Supplee, Fine Art ‘16: Coming up with ideas can either be a breeze or a serious struggle. I tend to start the process off in my sketchbook by taking a lot of notes from my own thoughts and even sketching out random idea’s. Sometimes coming up with ideas ends up being based on my intuition as well. I don’t always like planned projects so when I look at a blank canvas I can feel what is supposed to be there.
  • Kevin Mancuso, Graphic Design ‘16: First thing I do is research the company, then I gather up inspirational artwork that I feel best represents the company. Then I create a word map which is basically anything that can best describe the company. Word mapping basically gives me element different element that I can implement into the overall design. I normally do as many sketches as possible, then I start to design the concepts on to the computer at which the overall design gets three different revisions to them.
  • Selected_work_Maurice_ButlerMaurice Butler, Fine Art 17: I would ask myself, “What do I want to talk about?” I’m always intrigued the way that art can spark a conversation. To find that road of letting your art speak for you is a tough thing. I’m a conservative man who doesn’t really talk much about his past. So I tend to speak about it through my work because I’m afraid what others think.
  • Jezabeth Gonzalez, Photography ‘17: Sometimes I have dreams about them, other times I go through my journal entries. I mostly write about things I want to make that sometimes I’m scared of people’s reactions or how it will affect me or others. Then I just do it. If it works great, if not, I’m happy I tried it.
  • Avery Rose, Graphic Design ‘16: My process always starts with Research, Sketching and or Writing. I then narrow down my ideas to what I believe is the best direction for that project. After that I try and carry out and complete the initial idea, making corrections and changes as needed along the way.