Recently I have made the decision to spend a semester, amidst my college career, doing online classes at home. The plan is to return to my home-town, purchase my own wifi, transform a garage into a studio/office space, and take some time to to breathe. It will be an opportunity for practicing self motivation and for developing my artistic side in a space all my own.
I see cement floors I can hose clean, throw rugs by the bed and a desk in the corner covered in papers and things in-the-making. I see walls painted artistically off-white and a chance to build my own metalsmithing studio out of benches and saw-blades.
I see nothing but potential, but others disagree.
Others have shared with me the fear that I will regret this decision. That my little home town, in all its boring glory, will lose its novelty and become a place of smothered potential rather than thriving artistic opportunity. I understand these concerns. After all, when has taking online classes ever been anyone’s (especially my own) first choice? Additionally, even with its stunning scenery and beautiful people, my lovely town has a habit of long winters, dark days and, all-too-often for its young people – dead ends.
However, I know myself – and I know I am in need of a change. I thrive during times of quiet, the same sort of quiet that many deem unhealthy or even smothering. And although it has been a mere two years since my high-school graduation, I have grown in so many ways and possess a self-drive and self control not present in my teens.
I have a long way to go, of course. But the typical college experience is something I have never been driven (or able) to achieve. I spent my first year of college enrolled in a private University in Oregon. Then, due to the forces of life we are all familiar with, (in one way or another) I packed my not-so-little suitcase and spent my second year in the cold and desolate (but thriving) city of Fairbanks AK. Now, I am going to spend a semester at home, working on projects for my 2D Digital design class at my own desk, with a cup of coffee, in my pajamas.
This, I think, will be an amazing opportunity for several reasons.
1: A more real-world perspective on living on my own.
No dorm room, no cafeteria – just me and my life, complete with classes, work, bills, and (hopefully) even my own place. Practice makes perfect!
2: Creative space.
I have been home for several weeks now, and already I can feel the creative energy starting to flow again, the way it does when I have time and space (literally and figuratively) to dwell in the realm of my own mind and have those “AHA!” moments every artist lives for. I feel craftier and more inspired than I have in a long time, and the projects are beginning to come in waves. It’s amazing what happens when you have the space to listen to your own thoughts.
3: (Last but not least) AFFORDABILITY
Online classes are significantly cheaper than on campus learning,especially when you take into consideration dorm costs. I have to take those nifty little pre-requisite classes anyway, why not do it for less?
Also, its a brand new adventure, full of new challenges and blessings to write about and learn from. Though, I suppose, you could say that about anything.
Isn’t that a wonderful thing?
PS: currently reading The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin (fantastic read for self-improvement inspiration) and pinning endless photos of beautiful spaces and LOVING the prospect of decorating my own.