Andrew Valanda (Class of 2020)

Blogger Role: Painting

Major: Painting

Minors: Art History, Broadcasting and Digital Media, Illustration

I chose Marywood University because well at the time, to be honest, it was the closest university of choice. However, my opinion of Marywood has the perfect campus. For me, it was one of the best things that could have happened to me in my lifetime.

I am majoring in Art because it’s one of the things that I find myself to be the best at. Yes, that sounds like the normal load of crap you would normally hear from someone who doesn’t really care or just don’t know what they want from life, but no matter what happens in my life everything comes back around to art. From the way I see things in general, all the way to how I express my emotions, art is something I love and I feel that it makes me who I am. From building a canvas stretcher and globbing that first glob of paint to scraping a file across metal to make a piece of jewelry, making art is satisfying for me.

When I’m not in class…sadly enough when I’m not in class I’m working. If I find a chance to step away from work, I often have other projects of my own that I’m working on, like creating jewelry, making an illustration, working on my car, and creating things in the home.

So far my favorite art classes have been anything that I could try something new and get my hands dirty. The class that comes to my mind the most is actually Jewelry which I still do here and there for my own fun and for presents like making jewelry for my nieces, nephews, friends, and family. 

The coolest thing I’ve done at Marywood so far… well, I came back after seven years. I had a long battle with depression, but I overcame it…it was in a scary way. I guess sometimes you need the pants scarred off of you. AS FOR MY NEXT TRICK… LOL, I haven’t done yet BUT! I just built my largest canvas ever which is 6’ x 8’. Within the next week from now, I hope to have the canvas stretched and to have started painting. 

I’d recommend the Art program at Marywood because of the staff. The staff at Marywood let me go in my own direction and they give me pointers but they let me overcome challenges in my own way.  The faculty here helped me find the direction that I wanted to go in. Even if a teacher may have not been the right person to help with a particular question, they are always willing to point me toward someone who might be able to help me, such as sharing about an artist online or reaching out to another faculty member. This says a lot about teaching. It helps the art world evolve instead of teaching someone a style that already exists. Through my experience here I have heard people talk about their painting and drawing styles and how their style changed. I personally feel that my art is constantly evolving in the best of ways. Oh, fun fact l actually I never painted until I came to Marywood University. Thank you for reading.

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