Saturday, September 3, 2011

One Week

It's been a week since I arrived in the city. It was lonely. Then it was exciting. Then it was lonely again. Then Stephanie arrived. I started laughing again, with someone to laugh with. Then I was overwhelmed by classes. Reading about art, viewing art, thinking about art, talking about art, dissecting ideas about art, writing about art, and dreaming For a girl from the simple life (in no reference to Paris Hilton's horrific television ambitions), the density and mystery of the city is scary. Not scary because it's big. I've been able to find my way to the L quite a few times after a maze of people, buildings and 7-11s downtown. (There's probably about eleven 7-11s in the loop, and on my first day of school, I got off the train and made my bearings from one such 7-11 on the corner a few blocks from the Art Institute. Then there was another on the corner just a few blocks away.) It's scary because no one knows me, and I can be whoever I want to be. I could disappear into the alleyway, and no one would even notice I was gone.  I drive myself crazy thinking about how little I matter to the city of Chicago. I'm a little girl again in Kindergarten, on the playground with no one to play with. Don't worry. My nature of worrying and beating myself into the ground, or rather, the wide cement on Michigan Avenue, has been realized. God knows it, too. He's knows that I was homesick for Nebraska yesterday. That I don't make a very great city girl. That I miss my family. I miss my friends. I miss camp. I miss the stars. That I get claustrophobic around so many people and buildings. That all I've dreamed about every night this week is my friends and family, and when I wake up, all I want to do is hop on a plane, move back to Nebraska, and get a job in the Cornhusker state.

The School of the Art Institute couldn't be more different from Concordia University. Every program is disjointed. I don't even know when I'll ever see the sculptors I met last week for some cocktails and chili fries. The material resources for success are overwhelming. The competition is intimidating. People are intensely driven, brilliant, and creative. Yet, here I am, the youngest entrant into my program and the least knowledgeable about the art world. I couldn't even name a living visual artist besides Thomas Kincaid. What the eff am I doing here?

But, there's got to be some kind of reason I'm now sitting here in my apartment, writing about all this in the big city. I just don't know it yet. And I probably won't know. That's how the early twenties of life go, right? Am I going to miss the unknown one day? The freedom and independence of young adulthood? The humongous opportunities of creativity before me? Probably. So, why not have a few beers and say CHEERS! to the hazy future, that might never be there again!

Plus, at the Art Institute, they say they plan on giving plenty of tools and materials to make a blank slate colorful. Here are a few things I've learned.

Let your brain boil.
Don't be afraid to think and to analyze what you take in with your senses. The human nervous system was made beautifully to help us become ourselves and develop our own thought. Also, pay attention to your body when you're looking at art, listening to music, or reading. It will tell you something about yourself.

Viewing the original Mona Lisa might be like watching sausage being made.
Media consumerism sucks, and some artists have become mere celebrities.

But don't be fake.

Avoid bullshit.
One of my professors was specifically referring to writing, but I think it applies to being yourself, too.

Did you know the rain is just as beautiful in Chicago as it is in Nebraska? It is. The lightning is bouncing off the rooftops right across from our top floor apartment. It's so loud. God's majesty is here, too! Sometimes, the floor shakes when the lightning strikes. I love rainy days. I like to eat a bowl of Cinnamon Life and look out the window. It's nice to know I can love rainy days in Chicago, too. And, I'll never stop loving Life! Ha. That was a good one, yeah?


1 comment:

  1. Lindsey, I so enjoyed reading your thoughts on the past week. I know it's just a mere glimpse of all you've experienced...but just think how much growing and learning you'll do in your time there. I've only been in Ft. Wayne for 4 days & things planned & unplanned have occurred. Oh the craziness of it all. Go with God in all you do. I totally get that "feeling like a kindergartner" thing & classes have yet to begin.