By Willa Moffatt, Abbey Fisk and Meghan Bobrowsky,
Many Davis students enjoy creating art. But for some, art is more than just a hobby–it becomes a serious option for a future career path.
Photography captured Da Vinci Charter Academy alumnus Justin McGrew’s interest at an early age when he got a disposable Spiderman camera for his sixth birthday. But it was after graduating from single-use cameras that he began thinking seriously about photography.
“I was 14 years old when I bought a Nikon D5100 with my savings,” McGrew recalled. “I was a bit overwhelmed when I started, but it soon became enjoyable.”
McGrew is not yet certain where his talent for photography will take him in the future, but he does know that even if he does not pursue a career in this art, it will continue to be a part of his life.
“Photography will always be a hobby of mine, because I really enjoy capturing the world through my eyes and sharing it with other people […] I will always love making photos,” he said.
McGrew currently attends Chico State University, where he continues to improve his skills through art classes and clubs, and acknowledges that he is “very fortunate to have a lot of options.”
Like McGrew, juniors Isabel Alvarez and Esther Wang are unsure about making their art into a career, but both painter-drawers definitely see it as an option.
“Recently I’ve been really considering making it a career; I had never really thought about it before,” Alvarez said.“It was mostly a hobby but ever since taking a high school level art course it’s really challenged me and pushed me to a level where I feel like, this is something that I would want to do professionally,”she added.
Both Alvarez and Wang currently take AP Art Studio at Davis High School.
Alvarez spent part of her summer taking online classes offered by the Academy of Art University in San Francisco to further develop her skills.
“I’m really interested in exploring digital and three-dimensional art mediums,” she said.
Wang focuses on painting and would probably like to minor in art in college, but views the field as too competitive to join professionally.
“It’s pretty difficult to make a career out of art unless you’re a graphic designer or something like that,” Wang said.
Future goals aside, art remains a way for these students to connect with the world around them.
“It really just represents consciousness and the flow of ideas. It’s a great way for me to express emotions and experiences. I prefer art as like a community thing, so like collaborating with other people and connecting ideas and turning it into creativity or pieces,” Alvarez said.
In additional to visual artists, performing artists like dancers abound at DHS. Some students are taking their first year of dance while others have pirouetted their way through school and are hoping to continue in college.
Alumna Noriko Smallwood has been dancing since her mom brought her to baby ballet classes at the age of three.
“I dance because it’s always been a part of my life, and it’s what I’m good at,” Smallwood said.
Smallwood was captain of Mirror Image, a dance competition team, for two years, and was on the DHS dance team for three years. She is now attending Washington State University and hopes to make it on the dance team there.
Recent DHS graduates Sarah Allen-Sutter and Devon Hayakawa are taking their experiences with high school plays and drama and trying to create careers for themselves in college.