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October 05, 2016

Hard work breeds confidence

Q + A with Printmaking and Drawing major Samantha Konet

Hard work breeds confidence

What made you choose CIA?
In 2007 (I went to) CIA's Student Independent Exhibition. I remember being infatuated with all of these art objects. I chose to attend CIA because it engulfs you in this comfortable, warm feeling. CIA had exactly what I wanted.

How has the CIA faculty helped you with your art?
The faculty has definitely encouraged me to step outside my comfort zone. With drawing, for example, there is a multitude of ways one can approach perspective, or form. In the Drawing Department, they are so open to the range in which you can approach these things that I think having a balance of both structure, and also a lot of freedom, has encouraged me to explore new materials and more subject matter. I don’t think I would have found those things without my faculty members.

What are the advantages of having faculty members who are working professionals?
Seeing my professors have shows, or seeing them be so comfortable talking to us about professional situations they’ve been in, has definitely helped me in and outside the school. This year, for the second year in a row, I was the head of the Student Independent Exhibition. When I was feeling stressed or feeling overwhelmed, luckily I had faculty advisers, and seeing how they were balancing teaching with also doing their own studio work, reminded me that it is possible to dabble in more than one thing at a time and still be comfortable and happy. I thought, if my professors can do it, and do it passionately, then so can I.

What have you liked about your studio space?
I really like the way our studio environments are set up, with how open it is and how accessible everybody is. It’s nice to see how everyone revels not only in personal growth but also in how we grow as a community. Just having one-to-one critiques with each other is so helpful. Your studio space may be your own personal space at times, but it’s still something that people are looking into. The way we interact with each other, it’s a place to feel very much okay with the moments when you think you just made the worst piece of your life. It’s a very comfortable place to feel kind of vulnerable, and to know that the person next door is also probably going through the same feelings and insecurities of being a young artist.

How have you improved and become a more confident artist in your four years at CIA?
Recently, one of my studio mates and I were talking about how incredibly strange it is to think back to our freshman year and our drawing skills, or how we only saw art in very specific ways. It just feels like it’s gone by so fast. I am taking away four years of an education that will help carry me through my professional career. To be able to say, confidently, that I am an artist, that’s something I am really grateful for.

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Princeton Review, Money Magazine and Payscale place the Cleveland Institute of Art on their lists. https://t.co/dRY6T2k6W9

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