Sunday, June 8, 2014

Final Blog Post :(

1. Overall, what is your opinion of 20 Time based on YOUR experience in class?
       Personally, 20 Time was a great experience. I loved being given time in class to do what I wanted to do and I also loved how when we were told to pick a project to work on, we were told to "think big". It taught me that hard work pays off and that if you have the passion and the determination to do something, you can do it.

2. What are some aspects of 20 Time that you think should be adjusted for students next year?
       Although it wasn't a problem in my case, I noticed that many other students didn't pick a project that they felt passionate about. I think next year, the importance of picking a project that the students are passionate about should be made very clear. Also, I think the students next year should be allowed to change their project at any point in the year. They should never feel hesitant to change their project if they feel like they aren't getting anywhere with it. 20 Time is meant to be a fun project and if any student feels that it is causing more stress than it is worth, they should feel comfortable with changing their project subject. 
3. What are some aspects of 20 Time that should NOT be changed for students next year?
       Blog posts should still be due at least once every other week if not once a week. It is very important that they write about what they did the past week or so concerning their project because it motivates them to get as much work done on their project as possible. Since this is a year-long project, it is easy to lose motivation and writing a blog post every week really helps. 

4. Is 20 Time something that more students should do in school? Please explain why or why not.
       20 Time is something that more students should do in school because it is an escape from the normal stresses of school life. Not only does it give students an opportunity to try something new, but it also leads to the student having a better understanding of themselves and how they work. 

5. What advice would you give to students who are doing 20 Time next year?
       Make sure you pick a subject that YOU are passionate about. Don't compare your project to other peers. The goal of this project is to do something you love - not to do the most outrageous thing ever. 

Mural Project Post 23

This past weekend, I met with the owners of the building. They took a look at all of my sketches and loved them! They offered to allow me to paint on any of the walls on their building and even asked if I would be interested in painting a second mural on their garage and  possibly a third on an apartment building that they own just down the block. The only problem is that they said they had something else in mind for the design of the first mural. They both agreed that they definitely want the design to be about Detroit. This request would require me to redesign the mural which would mean drawing many more sketches and staying in touch with them along the process. Since the school year is coming to a close soon, I don't think I will be able to get it all done before I have to write my speech. I was hoping to have the mural painted before writing my talk, but it doesn't seem like a possibility at this point in the year. I wish I would have gotten in touch with them earlier in the year because then the mural could have been completed within the time I was given to work on this project. Even though I am not going to finish the project before the school year is over, I plan on staying in touch with them over the summer. Painting a mural will still be a fun project over the summer and making my mark on the city of Detroit is still something I want to do. However, I am going to take a break from the project until after school is over so that I can focus on writing my speech and studying for finals. 

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Mural Project Post 22

These past weeks have been very hectic and again I have not have time to meet with the owners of the building. However, I have called them earlier today and we are going to meet sometime this week. Painting is definitely not going to be done by the end of April like I had hoped, but now I am hoping to get it done as soon as possible. I would like to have pictures of the painting of the mural to use as slides during my speech. For this reason, the sooner I can get the painting done, the better. Furthermore, I may have to write my speech first, then add slides in to fit the speech. I know that the original process is to pick slides and then write, but this change in order will probably be necessary in my case. As far as funding goes, I have the money to buy paint and supplies. I have researched the price of paints I would like to use and am confident funding will not be a problem. I will post an additional blog post later this week to update on how the meeting with the owners went and tell of a finalized date for painting.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Mural Project Post 21

This past week, I wasn't able to get in touch with the owners of the building. I need to make this a priority this week because I planned to have painting done by the end of April. In terms of funding for the mural, I still haven't decided whether or not to hold a fundraiser or ask relatives and friends for donations. However, in the case that I am unable to gain enough donations before I wish to begin painting, I have saved some money to buy supplies. As the end of the school year draws nearer and nearer, I am beginning to become more and more stressed about getting the project done in time. I planned on getting painting done by the end of April, but forgot that I will be gone for most of Spring Break. For this reason, the painting of the mural may not be finished until the middle of May.

I have done a lot of thinking as to what the theme of my speech will be and I am getting closer to a general outline of my speech. I have decided that my speech will be about how everyone is born with creativity and that everyone should exercise that creativity in some way or another to keep it from fading with their youth. Similar to the ideas expressed in Sir Ken Robinson's TED talk about how education is killing creativity, I will focus on how everyone is born with the ability to create, but it gets lost by some along the way. However, I believe that some people lose this ability not because of the school systems, but rather a mixture of the discouraging that people give each other and the lack of practice. Just like everything else, I believe creativity is something that can be practiced and with more practice, it comes easier. I know that everyone must be born with the same amount of creativity because of the "left and right brain theory". This is fact that one's right brain hemisphere is more artistically focused and one's left brain hemisphere is more logically focused. Although I don't believe that one hemisphere is more in control of one's thoughts than the other (this is the "left and right brain theory"), I do believe that just the fact that a whole half of the human brain is dedicated to creativity proves that everyone is capable of creating. I think that somewhere during childhood, something must happen to instigate the stop in creative thinking. For example, if someone were to tell another that they were bad at drawing, they would likely stop drawing and their excuse would be that they "can't draw". I think it's sad that so many people think they "can't sing", "can't dance", or "can't play an instrument" because someone told them long ago that they weren't good at it. Therefore, I think the cure to ending this cycle of discouraging and giving up is to encourage others in art and practice it often. 

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Mural Project Post 20

The past two weeks, I have been in touch with the owners of the building which I plan to paint on soon. They haven't decided on a wall which they would allow me to paint, but I plan on meeting with them again in the next week or so to talk more. I also have been compiling a group of family, friends, and peers who all volunteered to help paint. I hope to get the painting done in April, when it will hopefully warm up. As far as funding for paint and supplies goes, I don't have it as of now. As I talked about in my last post, two possibilities for raising money would be to hold a fundraiser or ask friends and family to donate money. I still haven't decided which technique I will use to raise the money I need and I plan to decide within the next weeks and earn the money. 

As the end of the school year draws nearer, I have been thinking about what the theme of my speech will be. While reflecting on the lessons I have learned through this project, I was reminded of all of the times this school year that I felt like giving up. Time and time again, I had to find different ways to remind myself the purpose of my project and the positive impact the outcome of this project could potentially have on others. Although I haven't decided on the topic of my speech yet, I am thinking it will have to do with making your mark on the world, how everyone has the potential to make something great, and never giving up. I know that these all have been key themes throughout the process of painting a mural. 

Monday, March 10, 2014

Mural Project Post 19

This week, I made a few big decisions regarding my mural's design and location. Although I was hoping to get a location closer to downtown, I hope to be painting at the location I wrote about in last week's post. Despite the fact that it isn't downtown, the owners of the building would offer me a large wall that can clearly be viewed from the street. I'm hoping that after I paint a mural here, it could open opportunities to paint at least one more mural preferably closer to downtown. I am absolutely thrilled to have a location and the support of the owners of the building! I still need to talk to them about what I plan to paint and when I would start, but I plan to do so in the upcoming weeks. 

In terms of my mural's design, I am planning on painting the design I posted earlier called, "All Together Now" (pictured below). I wrote earlier in more depth of why this design is the best I've drawn yet (see blog post 17). Unless I come up with a better fitting design before I paint, I plan to paint this design. Also, I was unable to sketch any drawings this week, but I will continue doing so in case I come up with a better design. Lastly, I also need to think about how I will be funding this project and I have a couple ideas. One option would be to ask family friends for help in funding. This could work, but it would take up a lot of time because I would have to call each and every friend or family member until I came up with enough money. The second idea I have come up with is to hold a fundraiser at school or church. I have been researching how to hold fundraisers and I think it is definitely a possibility I need to keep in mind as I go forward. 

All Together Now

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Mural Project Post 18

My favorite thing about 20 Time this year has been the idea the project is based off of. The whole idea behind the project is that giving students 20% of class time to work on a project of their choice will help bring back their love of learning. I also liked that because of this project, I have had enough time to explore my love of art more in depth and have been given the opportunity to make my mark on the world. Lastly, I liked how when we were deciding on a project idea, we were told to "reach for the stars" and that "failure is an option". All too often, I think students are taught that being realistic is more valuable that being imaginative and failure is never an option. This mindset behind the project automatically set me up for the possibility of doing something big and amazing. However, if I am unable to reach my goal, there still is opportunity to learn a valuable lesson through the 20 Time project. 

My least favorite thing about 20 Time was the stress this project caused me at some points during the school year. Even though failure is an option for this project, I still beat myself up on weeks that I didn't get anything done. I am a huge procrastinator and that always leads to regrets on nights before a due date. For this reason, I don't think that my stress was caused by a flaw in the construction of the project, but rather caused by my procrastination and high expectations for myself. The one thing I would have done differently regarding the 20 Time Project goes hand in hand with my least favorite thing. If I could go back in time, I would not procrastinate! I wish I had found a location and planned more during the start of the project. If I had done this, I wouldn't have so much stress. 

This week I finally have some good news regarding a location for my mural! So far, I have found one building that the owners of which would allow me to paint on! As you can guess, I am really excited about this! The owners of the building are friends of my parents and the address is 20141 Kelly Rd., Detroit, MI 48225. Although this building is in Detroit, it isn't exactly in a spot where I had imagined my mural to be. I wanted my mural to be closer to downtown and on a busier street. However, I can't be too picky with my location as I have already had so much trouble finding one. For this reason, I have told the owners of the building that I am still looking for a location, but am very thankful that they would allow me to paint on their building. I asked them if it would be okay with them if I kept looking and came back to them if I couldn't find another place and they said that was completely acceptable. So as of now, I am still searching, but I am glad to know that if I can't find a perfect place, I still have a backup location.