Now that I’m finally settling into post-undergrad life (NYAH to Brandie, Jennie, Kelli, Anna, Lyda, and everyone else still stuck at Alverno!) in the city where I belong, I guess it’s about time I start . . . you know, figuring out what the hell I’m doing. With all these la-de-da grad school people around me (you know who you are) and considering the requirements of jobs I actually want, I’ve been thinking more and more about starting grad school within three years. My super-cool uncle once told me that he thinks that one should go through hell in your 20’s in order to live well for the rest of your life; that’s beginning to get more and more appealing . . . except that I’m still in my 20’s lol.
After researching several schools in the Chicagoland area, only one stands out: The School of the Art Institute. I want to attend a specifically art-centered institution – that was a mistake I made with Alverno – and the only other place that’s really appealing, Columbia College, is too business-based for me. SAIC is IT!!! Their MFA in Studio (through the painting and drawing department) program is almost like it was made for me. http://www.saic.edu/degrees_resources/gr_degrees/mfas/index.html It is RIDICULOUSLY expensive, but I think I would regret going anywhere else. It does have great job opportunities. However, most of the jobs that require only a BA are suited for people who actually go there already. For example, I couldn’t be a competent SAIC representative to high schools if I haven’t had the experience of being a student there. In any case, grad school at SAIC is even in my dreams, I think about it so much.
I would need to be in more exhibits, sell more pieces, get more experience in the art world before even thinking about applying to any grad school for my MFA. The Chicago Artists’ Resource is fantastic so I’m getting a great start less than a week after moving here. And before getting back into any school-like program, I want to take advantage of several artist-in-residence offers in the West (Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, etc.), Zion National Park being my #1 preference since I’ve already been there three times and because . . . well . . . LOOK AT IT!! http://www.nps.gov/zion/supportyourpark/artist-in-residence.htm
Here is my ideal 1-4 year plan:
1) Get a job, saving up enough money to travel
2) Participate in juried shows, art fairs, gallery events, workshops, etc. to build my reputation
3) Attend 4+ weeks of artist-in-residence programs
4) Apply to SAIC
Let me know what you think