Wk 14- Art Experience- Sketching in the Garden

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This week instead of going to class, we had the amazing opportunity to go to the Japanese Gardens to sketch and take photographs. I personally love the Japanese Gardens so much and think it is such a beautiful place on campus. I have taken photos there many times but never sat and sketched the beautiful scenery I was surrounded by.The sketching experience was nice and frustrating at the same time. On one hand, drawing was very relaxing and peaceful and on the other drawing was frustrating when nothing came out amazing and I had trouble really figuring out how to draw “abstract”. I am a person who is used to structure and looking at art realistically and literally, therefore drawing an abstract picture, was a hard concept for me to truly understand. I guess everyone has a different opinion of what is abstract, which also made me have a difficult time with executing an abstract photo. Overall, the experience was a lot of fun and very enjoyable. I learned I wish I was a better artist but sitting amongst beautiful nature and sketching is so relaxing and I plan on doing it again. I loved switching up class time and recommend this activity for the future.



Wk 13-Art Experience-Art Care Package

This week we were told to send a classmate an Art Care Package. The package was supposed to be full of different items that resembled ephemera. After learning about ephemera (items of collectible memorabilia, typically written or printed ones, that were originally expected to have only short-term usefulness or popularity), I decided to put a bunch of random stuff in the care package. I honestly have never met the classmate I got, so I couldn’t send a lot of personalized items. For this assignment I decided to go through my house and find any little trinkets or random items that could go in my art care package. Personally I believe everything is art whether the random mardi gras necklace I found , the Beach first aid kit, random tickets, To-DO lists, Jewels, Close Pins or Fake Flowers they all symbolize art in some way. I also colored 2 wood letters “A and G” which were my classmates initials. I consider most of these items to be ephemera, but I hope my classmate likes the package and finds some use or symbolism in some item I sent her!

Sending someone an ACP is similar to sending someone a Snapchat because it should only have use for only a short time. The package is full of items that can not be used for long Screen Shot 2016-04-25 at 1.50.17 AMand a snapchat can only be viewed for a max of 10 seconds. On the contrary the ACP is different then a snapchat because a snapchat is sent digitally and only last seconds while the package is mailed and items can be kept I think ephemera has different value to everyone. What one may consider trash, another may consider very precious. I think some ephemera’s can gain value over time while others can lose value over time. I believe every person and item will be different. For example an old parking ticket may be meaningless to one but an old marking ticket can also have meaning if it symbolizes a days someone got promoted or had a great date, etc. I recently just want to Coachella and believe my wristband will be very meaningful! There is a difference between art that is seen by many people, like a painting in the Museum of Modern Art, and art that is seen by few, like the ACP you send to someone because one type of art is recognized and truly valued and displayed to endless people while the ACP is not. On the other hand, a person may have way more individual love and appreciation for an ACP then some piece of art in a public museum. Someone can take a Snapchat and a friend on the other side of the globe can view it, all within seconds. To make an ACP and send it even to a nearby friend will take days. Snapchat is amazing because it is remarkable to be able to receive photos and information so quickly. On the contrary I believe slow is better because it shows someone put time and effort into what is sent. I feel like anything hand made or created such as an ACP has way more “love” and care then anything store bought. I may have a young spirit but I will always have an old soul.

Wk 13-Artist Conversation-Ihab Ali


Artist: Ihab Ali

Exhibition: Eyewitness

Media: Dry wall, car, burlap blake sheeting, paint, lights

Gallery: CSULB School of Art Marilyn Werby Gallery

Website: NA

Instagram: ihabali


This week I had the pleasure of meeting Ihab Ali who is a very talented artist in the Undergraduate Program of BFA Ceramics at Long Beach State. He was born and raised in Syria for the first 14 years of his life and grew up in a very political home. When I asked him about his hobbies and interests, he said he is interested in making stuff and constantly being in the studio. I did learn his favorite food is pizza with pineapple, mushrooms and olives. He is Arab American as his father is from Iraq and his mom is from Syria and he lived a major part of his life in America. Many aspects of life and personal experiences inspire his work. He went to a Politically charged show in Italy titled “All the Worlds Future” and found an immense amount of inspiration in the show. He believes we are bound in our own culture and that also inspires him. He has lived in California for years and believes the state is an isolated place. His beliefs are due to the fact we receive everything through a camera. Ihab seemed so passionate about his work and his hard work and endless time put into this exhibit was noticeable.

His exhibit was different then any exhibit I have viewed previously. Ihab created an Installation Theatrical piece of reality. His exhibit displayed pure chaos. His exhibit presented poverty and abandonment. When walking through the exhibit, he hoped the viewer would have thought provoking questions such as “Where is the media?” “Where is everyone?” and  “Who will clean up the mess?”. When talking about the formal qualities of his work, Ihab explained how his advisors called his work “manipulative”. He manipulates his exhibit so when someone walked through they would experience the scene as an eyewitness. In all of his work he believes in tight lines rather than straight lines. Furthermore, Ihab is intimidated by color because he has trouble with how other people make opinion of his color choices. He loves to play with black and white and throws glass in his work because it is lose and abstract. He had to use a plethora of materials for his Exhibit. To be very specific he used 35 sheets of dry wall, an old car, 110 square feet of burlap and other small items like a camera, television, red paint resembling blood and a cup from Syria. I believe all of his materials impacted his exhibit for the better.

His exhibit is truly about displaying a bombed area and to present a politically charged world, most Americans know very little about. Most things Americans know about the world are just through the news or pictures. He knows that the world can be a political asylum with no embassy or protection and wants to help show the truth and become a Political activist Artist. Through his exhibit he was able to tap into memories and have honest conversations with his parents. His parents even got the opportunity to view the exhibit and said “Where is your art?”. Although, the whole exhibit was a creation of art, they didn’t view it that way because the bomb scene seemed natural to them. Although I found that very sad, it also showed what an incredible job Ihab did at making his exhibit extremely accurate.

Ihab stated at one point in our conversation that “The way I think is based off of the way I was cultivated” He is pretty much sating we can’t get out of our culture and our past will always influence our future which I genuinely believe to be 100% true. Ihab was such an awesome artist to talk to. He was so down to earth and had such a friendly personality. Even after class ended we continued to chat and I could tell he is such a well rounded intelligent guy. He is truly passionate about his work and I believe he will only achieve greatness in the future. I look forward to seeing his future work and very glad I got to meet him.

Wk 13-Classmate Discussion-Destiny Farihi

This week I was fortunate enough to meet Destiny Farihi. She is majoring in Chemistry, which I admire her for because I hate chemistry with a passion. She is a hard working student and makes a school a priority in her life. When I asked her what she likes about chemistry she said she likes Chemistry because everything around us has something to do with it. Everything has molecules and everything works because of chemistry. She chose it as her major because she wants to eventually go into pharmacy and work in a hospital where her mom works as a nurse.

IMG_5075She is also very involved in school as she is on the schools Division 1 Competitive Cheer team and her favorite part of being a school cheerleader is being able to be involved in such a large school like Long Beach. Destiny has made so many new friends and memories she knows she’ll never forget as a cheerleader. I loved when she told me there is  really an amazing feeling, being on the floor at a huge basketball game in the pyramid, something that doesn’t really compare to anything else!! I can see what an amazing cheer program we have here through her and know the importance of being involved.

When I asked Destiny to tell me fun facts about herself I was most interested to find out she has done gymnastics for 12 years, has children size 3 shoe size, addicted to the show the Office on Netflix and her absolute favorite thing in the world is adventures. Additionally, her biggest pet peeve is when people eat or drink loudly and she is horrified of feet. She is so kind and well rounded and I think anyone would be lucky to call her a friend.


Wk 12- Classmate Discussion-Danielle Dallas

This week I decided to interview the honorary student of the class Danielle Marie Dallas. Danielle was my freshmen dorm roommate at CSULB. Her and I were complete strangers just a little over 2 years ago, and now we know one another very well. Although we lived just 3 feet apart for a year and spend multiple days a week together I believe there are always new things to learn about a person. IMG_4275

I asked her questions that I honestly have never asked her before and found all of her answers fascinating. When I asked her What personality traits do you look for in a friend and in a significant other? She continued to tell me she looks for someone with a strong sense of humor. Danielle is someone who is very funny and witty therefore most of her interactions involves some form of humor. She goals to surround herself with people who can reciprocate that wittiness. Danielle and I have truly gone through the last year and half of college together , so I was really curious to find out 5 goals on her life’s to-do list?

  1.   To Travel the world
  2. Graduate College
  3. Become a successful business person
  4. 100% support her parents
  5. Become completely happy with the person she is and to spread joy and happiness to everyone and everything around her.

Many people regret things they do in life, so I asked her if there is something she regrets? She told me she tries not to use the word “regret” because it’s a term that she believes has a very negative connotation. Danielle said something she looks back on and wishes she could maybe ‘change’ rather, is how long it took her to become somebody who speaks for themselves and doesn’t let the opinions of others bother them. I loved that she said that because personally I do not believe in regretting either and love seeing how much she has grown as an individual in the past year.

I have to say I believe living in the dorms  has had the biggest influence on my college career thus far. Danielle was a big part of this reason, so I thought asking her questions about Dorming would be applicable.I asked, What advice do you have for someone looking for a roommate? The advice she would give somebody looking for a roommate is to keep an open mind. Everyone will encounter many different types of people and some you will connect with while others you won’t. Don’t discredit yourself if you don’t find somebody right away. College will bring a plethora of new people into your life; there is at least one person you are bound to connect with so don’t get discouraged! Personally I loved forming, and think it should be mandatory for all freshmen, so I asked her if she thought dorming freshman year was beneficial?

She 100% believes that dorming was extremely beneficial. Without dorming she would not have met the girls who make up one of my immediate friend groups and without dorming I feel that I would not have had the true first year college experience that I think everybody should have. Living together on a floor with 60+ other girls really teaches you a lot and a sense of community begins to form.

When asked, What did you learn from having a roommate? She said to go from living in a home where you know how everything works and how everyone operates to suddenly being uprooted and put in a completely new environment with somebody who is virtually a stranger to you is somewhat of a shock. From having a roommate I learned that a lot of things are compromise. This process taught me how to live with somebody even though we had differences here and there. It showed me how quickly a stranger can go from being just that, a stranger, to somebody who is a friend and basically a new family member, and it taught me how much you can learn about somebody and how many memories can be made in just 9 months in a 8 x10 room.

I ended asking if she liked her freshman roommate, ( even though I was the freshmen rooomate) She said I was awful and then admitted she was kidding and said she loved me and we will be forever roomies!

There is truly no one else I would have wanted to live in an 8 by 10 box with, adventure with, or spend my every Tuesday/Thursday with. I am grateful DD decided to be an honorary student and it is an honor to watch her excel in a class she is not getting graded in.

Week 12-Artist Conversation-Travis Lober


Artist: Travis Lober

Exhibition: Ink 16: The West: The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly

Media: Acrylic Plastic, Etching Needle, Sand Blasting Machine, Ink

Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Marilyn Werby Gallery

Website: No Website

Instagram: No Instagram

This week I had the amazing opportunity to go to Coachella Music Festival, so I interviewed an artist 2 weeks go for this weeks artist conversation. I was fortunate to have met Travis Lober, who is an Undergraduate student at CSULB in the BFA Print Making School of Art. he is coming back to school and chose California State University long Beach cause he was accepted to the Graphic Design program. After taking some classes he realized he had a bigger passion and interest in Print Making and switched his major. Lober was born in San Hose, spent a lot of his life in Girloy California and only moved to Long Beach 2 years ago. He used to be a Construction Modeler and has played soccer for 14 years. He explained how it is very hard to have homies as he spends atleast 25 hours per week at school! This exhibit is titled: The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly, and the students job was to create a piece that resembled this title and concept. Due to this, Travis’s work explore the good, the bad and the ugly of his old jobs.  He thought spiders truly resembled this concept. Travis wants to get his Masters Degree and teach college level art in the future.

In this whole exhibit. Travis created one piece that took him over 25 hours. He work is very technical and very particular as well. All of his lines are very precise and how each line meets up is very important to him. He said that how his art looks is way more important than the meaning of each piece. He uses acrylic plastic, etching needle, sand blasting machine and ink. Additionally, the actual type of print is dry point. He really enjoys working on long vertical manners, as he thinks squares are boring. I found it very interesting that at times he uses dots over lines to make his art more exact. Travis told me how his piece being monochromatic, allows viewers to see the image over the color. I believe his work truly drives emotion without the use of any color.

The artist was really trying to embody the exhibit theme with something he knew best: spiders. He drew three different spiders to truly represent, the good, the bad and the ugly. Travis told me how there are lots of processes through trademark and construction, as well as are even though they are all romanticized. All of his work is based off of his previous career.

I think this exhibit has an amazing concept going, because life is all about the good, the bad and the ugly. There are endless good and bad things in the world so to find pieces of art that embody all these concepts was very fascinating for me. I honestly really liked Travis Lober’s  take on the exhibit. I loved how he related the good, the bad and the ugly to something prominent in his life, which was his past career. I believe incorporating something personal into art makes it more real and meaningful as well. I look forward to seeing what great art he produces in the future.

Wk 10-Artist Conversation-Helen Werner Cox

Artist: Helen Werner Cox

Exhibition: Silent Screams

Media: Arches Oil Paper, Oil Paint, Pastel

Gallery: CSULB School of Art. Gatov Gallery West

Website: www.HelenWernerCox.com

Instagram: NA

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This week I was very fortunate to meet the remarkable artist Helen Werner Cox. Her exhibit caught my eye immediately, and I knew I wanted to do this weeks artist conversation with her. Helen is from Ithaca New York, she lived there till she was 18 years old, when she went to Lawson University School of Fine Arts.The East Coast climate was too much for her and she has lived in Long Beach for the past 28 years of her life. She said she has been “holding crayons and pencils since before she can remember”. She was a Middle School Library Media Teacher for many years, but is now back at CSULB as a Graduate Student in the MFA Drawing and Painting program. Additionally, she is very interested in reading and is passionate about gardening, she even has gardens in both her front and back lawn.

Her work has a very strong focus on drawing.  She discussed how all of her work has a very figurative track meaning she likes to focus on people and models. All of her pieces have tons of energy and she borrows techniques from futurists. Some of her work are monochromatic, but some have warm, cool and complimentary colors as well. Most of the lines represent present motion. Helen tried to create energy and structural lines through each piece.Every line is very sinuous and a majority of lines curve. She uses chemically treated paper, and starts with oil paints, then covers with pastels.

Her exhibit is based off of Carousels. The carousels symbolize and are a metaphor for society. As a society we go in circles, and keep making the same mistakes over and over again. Helen worked on this project for a year and 3 months, and filled 2 full sketch books in this time as she traveled and sketched antique carousels all over California.Carousels are something that people have seen their whole life, and that helps embody the metaphor for the circles our society is going in.

Personally, I thought her work was remarkable. I genuinely thought these paintings of carousels belongs in a museum or hung up for everyone to admire, not just in a small exhibit at a University. Our society is known for repeating history and not making progress in some aspects of life. I do believe the carousels symbolize society in a plethora of ways and she executed the emotions of the different horses of the carousel very well. I think the carousel also can relate to my life, as at time I seem to make the same mistakes over and over. Additionally, life can become a routine and everything seems to go in receptive circles. Helen is not only an amazing artist but such a kind hearted beautiful woman and I can not wait to see what the future has in store for her.

Wk 10-Classmate Discussion-Devon Carus

IMG_3047                 This week I had the honor of meeting such an awesome classmate, Devon Carus. I have spoken with him a few times prior this semester but I was happy I got to get to know him on a deeper level. Although he has a set major in Marketing, if money wasn’t an issue he said he would love to pursue music and poetry. I asked him what he had planned for his Spring Break and he said he may drive up to Big Sur with a friend. He also works at Jersey Mikes which will take up some of his Spring Break time as well. When discussing dream Spring Breaks he said he would love to surf in Hawaii, as he has never been there and they have some of the best waves. Our conversations went very naturally and smoothly and it was nice having random similar beliefs such as; we both believe if someone dresses nice they feel nice. Additionally, we both love writing things down, because we both believe that there is such a satisfaction in crossing something off a list after it has been completed. Additionally, he asked me the question “ If I had no plans, no obligations and nothing to do what is the firs thing that comes to mind of something I would want to do?” I said to spend time with people I love, he said he first would want to have a bite of an avocado then spend time with those he loves. Personally I love avocado, but I was very fascinated that  avocados came to his mind first. Devon is so laid back, well rounded and talented, I look forward to hearing about his Spring Break adventures and hope he makes me avocado toast one day.

Wk 10-Art Experience-Instagram

This week for our art experience we had to use my favorite app Instagram. Instagram is a very cool app because people are able to share their life through photographs. I like this because even though people and moments do not last forever, photographs do. On Thursday I posted four photos throughout the day. I posted a photo with my morning coffee cup, 2 photos from the art museum and one of a wall in my room which I like.  Instead of just taking photos of the art or the coffee cup I tried to take each photo in an artistic way. After looking at our classes giant group selfie, of all of our posts together, it was very fascinating to see even though there were over 500 photos, every photo was different in some way. Due to the fact most students went to the museums on Thursday, that was the one commonality of all many students posts. I thought our group selfie really embodied a class full of unique individuals which I loved. Fun art experience to incorporate such a frequent used app. Screen Shot 2016-03-27 at 11.31.57 PM.png

Wk 8-Artist Conversation-Bri Joy


Artist:Bri Joy


Media:Bfk printmaking paper, light sensitive emulsion stencils, water based ink screen with aluminum frame she handmade

Gallery:CSULB School of Art, Gatov Gallery East

Website: No website until after graduation


This week I met a really down to earth artist: Bri Joy. She is an undergraduate student in the Print Making program at CSULB. She went to community college at Orange Coast and hopes to graduate from CSULB very soon. Her exhibit today was her undergraduate BFA show, which every art student needs to graduate! She comes from a wilderness of sorts. The town she grew up in had less than 1,000 people and no one even really had a cell phone. As Bri moved from a small town to Long Beach and Orange County she experienced a major culture shock. She said she was “a hobbyist”. She loves everything active, as she hikes, surfs and does yoga on the regular. All of her pieces explore the organic and digital worlds colliding or merging. The title of her exhibit is based off of her life.

Her work embodies her past and present life coming together. Each piece describes her two communities differences.  She described her work as being heavily digitalized lines seamlessly coming together.  She really doesn’t try for specific line shapes but just wants all of her work to be cohesive. 3 out of her 7 pieces incorporate figurative formal qualities which I found fascinating. Bri uses BFK print making paper. She likes using large pieces of paper to create larger pieces, therefore she has to order the paper in rolls. In addition to the paper, she used a screen she created herself, occasionally stencils and ink. She creates value from manipulating the eye and line.

Bri wants there to be conversations throughout her whole piece, rather than have any moments of seamless parts. All of her pieces are about her past. She is trying to explore a world of few people, little use of technology, close bonds and trust. At the same time she is trying to explore a word of technological advancements, crowded cities and less genuine relationships. The two worlds she tries to explore in each of her pieces are the two worlds she has lived in, one as an adolescent an one currently as an adult.

She described how as she moved cities, she experienced a major culture shock, due to the fact she believes people in Southern California are not as open as people from her home town. She told us to really value the genuine bonds in our life and I took that to heart. She was so right we live in such a populated place where creating strong bonds is not as easy as when in a close knit community or town. I really enjoyed her exhibit and could tell she put a lot of hard work into it. She described the process to me and explained how she had to make her own board because she wanted to make larger pieces then artists previously. I admired her hard work and determination and it definitely showed off in all of her pieces.