Caroline Kim

It was the middle of 8th grade when my passion for art started growing. From little doodles on my school notebooks to full-on sketches and drawings, I started testing my art skills and abilities on my own for fun. I was always artistic my whole life, but during this time, I began taking it more seriously. I gradually became more and more interested in the diversity of art, specifically focusing on drawing and painting. I would constantly engage in TikTok and Youtube videos, and Instagram posts of different ideas, techniques, tutorials and more. This led me to start buying new supplies and spend time trying my best to master these skills. I also began taking art lessons with my grandma, who happened to be a very talented artist who specializes in oil painting. Through her, I was able to receive guidance and advice.

Through the help and encouragement from my friends, family, teachers, and especially my grandma, I decided to apply for the art academy they offered at my high school. After weeks of building my portfolio, I made it in! I was really excited and looked forward to continuing my art journey in high school.

When COVID arrived, I told myself that I would use this time to work on my art more. However, I had to stop taking lessons from my grandma. I had all the time in the world during this time yet I felt I wasn’t using it wisely. I was doing everything I could do under the COVID restrictions except progressing with my art. I was watching strangers progress with their art through a screen instead.

This art block I was going through continued throughout the next year. The only time I drew was when I had to for my art class, which was a very easy class that I didn’t put much effort into. I didn’t use my own time to improve or to draw just for fun. My pencil case and sketchbooks were sitting in the corner of my desk collecting dust. Deep down I felt guilty and stuck, but my lack of motivation prevented me from doing anything more.

Eventually, I decided to enroll in an Advanced Conservatory Art class. After over a long year of not doing enough for art, I decided to push myself. Although this meant harder prompts, more rigorous due dates, and higher expectations, I felt the urge to make up for what I haven’t done during quarantine.

In the end, going through this art block helped not only to build my general art skills, but my perseverance. The struggles I faced in lacking creativity, teaching myself new techniques and materials I was unfamiliar with were all worth it in the end for all the lessons I learned.