Saturday, May 1, 2010

Art School Getaway?

May first finds me sitting at home, comfortably in my pyjamas in the late afternoon on a Saturday drinking Dr. Pepper. Things completed today: spoke on the phone with my two best friends, and also my brother, completed an Illustration Friday image, read the paper, and contemplation about my summer plans. I have been thinking about the idea of taking a summer course somewhere far away for part of the summer. My research into art schools outside of Manitoba has me looking at such schools as the Emily Carr University of Art and Design in Vancouver, Concordia University in Montreal, and I have even been delving into researching schools across the Atlantic in Europe.

Every time I think I'm finished with school, I always seem to go back.
Emily Carr is very appealing to me as a school because it has a good reputation for actually teaching technique, and after reviewing just the summer session courses that they offer, it makes me wish that I had done my undergrad there, instead of at the School of Art at the U of M. It's been a few years since I've spent any time in Vancouver, and think it would be a nice choice. However, the Vancouver lure isn't nearly as strong as the lure of Montreal or Europe(both places I have visited in the last two years, and have since wanted to go back!). Montreal has disappointed me in that Concordia University has already closed it's acceptance for summer session courses.

That leads me to my grand idea of taking off to LONDON, England for several weeks out of the summer. I was looking at a few different schools and found the University of the Arts in London which is an amalgamation of 5 different art and design colleges in the heart of London. Their short courses are a week long, and offer a great range of courses that has me wishing I had the time and resources to do another degree with with them. I was also trying to find some English speaking schools in either Paris or Spain, but could only find a few limited options that were well beyond my price range. Spain had great appeal to me because if I could improve my Spanish skills at the same time as my art making skills, I would be accomplishing quite the zealous summer goals(as well I have a certain affection for Spanish culture having spent months in both Guatemala and Mexico). London naturally has some attraction for me to visit because I've never spent any time there(other than a 5-hour layaway in Heathrow airport), and it has all the things a massive city should have to offer to a twenty-something, museum-hungry, architecture-enthused artist who likes walking. As well it is English speaking, which eliminates potential language frustration. I am about 80% decided about what I'm going to do, and want to submit an application soon to make sure I get into the course that I want.

These are my current thoughts anyways. I have learned about myself that I am open to suggestions, so if I come across another idea, I could persuade myself to adapt my plans.
I feel like I should note, perhaps for any naysayers out there who think to themselves, "But, doesn't Winnipeg offer any good courses during summer?" Well the answer is not really- I tried to sign up for two courses, through Red River College and The Winnipeg Art Gallery Studio and both were cancelled due to lack of interest. Also, I just like to travel.

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