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2013-05-12 at 11:00

Artistic merit

By Jeff Labine,
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By the end of the school year, Kristen Wall will be able to say she’s a professional artist.

That is if all goes well during her first professional art gallery, which premiered at Definitely Superior Art Gallery Friday. She, along with her Lakehead University classmates, spent most of the week setting up the various art displays.

The 22-year-old from Thunder Bay says she’s a little nervous.

“This time we don’t have any teachers telling us what our art looks like,” she says.

“It’s our first big show where we have to trust in ourselves that it looks good. It was weird doing some of the drawings without having to show it to my teacher.

Wall was busy setting up her drawings of her and her sister, Courtney. One picture shows the two sisters as children with young Courtney sitting on Wall’s lap. Wall also paints abstract art usually involving something from nature but with her own spin on it.

She says she likes to tell a story using her art and hopes her audience understands what she’s trying to tell them.

She says she always enjoyed drawing and wanted to be an artist. She broadened her taste by looking into music and theatre but always found herself coming back to visual arts.

That passion for art is what sparked her to enroll in the arts program at Lakehead University.

She says she originally wanted to go into the teacher program but decided against it opting to spending more time her own projects. Her ultimate goal is to open a business for professional artists.

“I’ve always loved having art in my life,” she says.

“We surprisingly have a pretty big art community. If we had another store I think it would make the art community grow a bit more because if we have a store in the south end and in the north end we could supply the whole city. There’s a lot of artists here that I didn’t even know of until I did my internship at the Painted Turtle.”

Jordan Allen is another art student hoping to call himself a professional artist.

The 22-year-old from Kenora says he was inspired to do art from the British television show Art Attack. He often followed along as the show’s host walked the audience through an art project.

He says he also liked math and science but was drawn to the creativity of art.

He eventually developed a passion for ceramics.

“With ceramics I feel you can pretty much create anything,” he says.

“You just mold it into anything you want. To me it has the most versatility. Right now I’m making crystals that are very geometrical. You have the clay, which has chemicals added to it, from there you just mold it with your hands. It takes about a week straight to make one.”

He says an artist can make a living but it requires the artist to know what they’re doing. Allen’s plan is to continue with his schooling and eventually becoming a teacher at a university.

But despite having a plan, Allen admits it’s not easy becoming an artist but hopes to always create something artistic in the future.

The Lakehead University gallery runs atthe Definitely Superior Art Gallery until June 1.



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