Rachel Bodnar

Boyertown, PA

While drawing, to me, has always been about precision and grit, painting has become a children’s storybook, ripe with imagination and color.

Art has always been the part of me that stands out in everything I do. Projects in academic courses get handed in with any creativity I can muster. I can’t pass a pretty flower without taking a picture, or miss light streaming in through my window. I incorporate pieces of my art into every task I take on. In fact, this very doodling practice has resulted in a Most Creative award in my junior high years (I’m a senior in high school now). To me, separating creativity and artistry from everyday life is impossible.  However, this proves terribly convenient.

Creating art was never not a hobby of mine, but it became more than that when I began high school and started to take art more seriously. Until then, painting was only what I did when I was spontaneously inspired; now it was the driving force behind my eyes, my little weary-eyed conscience, driven awake by the endless stream of ideas and inspiration I harvested from everyday life.

My first high school drawing class, taught by Mr. Dareneau at Boyertown Senior High School, was nothing like I expected. Like most people who get to this level, I had expected strict regulations on my artistic process but an intense, photo-realistic masterpiece by the end. Instead, Mr. Dareneau gave us helpful advice tailored to our artistic situations and encouragement into fostering our own style. Instead of creating a photocopy of an existing object (which I could also now do, thanks to the teaching of Mr. Dareneau), I learned to create my own art.

Painting only intensified my new-found love of creating. I fell in love with the movement inside a painting, the swooshes and crashes inside an oil painting of the sea, the orchestrated chirps inside a watercolor portrait of a meadow. Mrs. Hendrix taught me the feeling behind art, the passion that moves a brush across a canvas. By giving her classes the explicit freedom to create whatever they found inspiring or intriguing, she helped me discover the hunger I had for painting.

My future with art remains a blank canvas. Not only do I have an interest in any and all forms of creation and capturing beauty, but I’m still trying to translate this love into a college and career plan. The Savannah College of Art and Design has always been in my sight, but so have many others with wonderful programs. Working for a company like Disney has always interested me, because of the dedication to detail and creativity. And maybe I will end up there someday, working on the creative team and dreaming up ideas for people of all ages to squeal and laugh over, tear up or sing along to; but I know that my future lies with my imagination, and the only thing that can catch up to that is my art.

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