May 11, 2015 – August 8, 2015
Before I left home for college, the father of a friend of mine told me a story about his college graduation. When he came home from the ceremony with a diploma attesting to his Bachelor’s degree in history, his father looked at it for a moment, looked up, and said: “Great. So what are you going to do? Open a history store?”
Through four years of college and the countless art classes, ruminations on Rembrandt and piles of clay, I learned a lot, and had a great time, but I kept wondering. What am I going to do with all this?
Until I had a class with Owen Mundy.
Professor Mundy, who made national news with his silly/disturbing/hilarious website “I Know Where Your Cat Lives,” showed me the intersection where art meets modern life. Later, when he offered me an internship and asked me to help design the Android and iOS app for the site, I knew I was going to have an opportunity to explore a new world of technologies.
Already, creating the UI for the application has improved my design knowledge. That was one of my goals for this semester. It has taught me new design trends, introduced me to the realm of mobile app design, and refined my skills in Adobe Illustrator.
My chief goal was learn more about the world of web technology because it appeared to be a place where an artist could find a home.
As I gain more experience in designing and coding, my confidence is skyrocketing and my goals are shifting toward being the one who builds that home.
I wanted this internship to show me another marketplace for my skills, but I was worried that the information would be too dense and techno-dreary to comprehend. Building an app requires extensive research and more patience than I thought I could muster. I have surprised myself.
The most important thing I learned was that a company might hire a web developer and a web developer might hire an artist, but opportunities would expand exponentially if I could be both the web developer AND the artist.
Four years of college art classes have served me well and expanded my skills, but my two courses and current internship with Owen Mundy have changed my path as a professional.
With his guidance, I have discovered my intrinsic Fountain of Geek through exploration of the technology that drives the blinding pace of change – all while holding on to the love of art that brought me here in the first place. I am grateful to be part of this project.
And I think I’m closer than ever to having an answer to that question I’m going to get after graduation.