Advanced Essay #1: [Your Mind and Your Hands]


My goals in this paper is to inform the reader about my struggles on figuring out what to paint for an important assignment I once had. And how that influenced me to not to listen to people who discourage me and to continue their passions. I am proud of the analysis towards the end where I express my feelings about what society expects of me but I do not what to follow what I was taught. Some things I would like to improve in the future, is to work on my transitions so the flow of my essays would go smoothly with no changes in tone.

Advanced Essay:

As I sit in on my bed, thinking about what to write, how to write about this. It stays sitting in my bookshelf, on the very highest shelf hidden behind all the happy family memories. It is something that holds my talents; a small painting created by my fifth grade self. Painting came easily to me and it was somewhere I could express my creativity and there were no limits. But this talent wasn’t satisfying the expectations of my family or the lifestyle I was grown into.

I drifted away from those thoughts and flashbacked to when I painted it. The memory was slowly fading away from my mind and it was getting difficult to remember every detail. It was an assignment every student in the fifth grade was given. We were to read, Number the Stars, by Lois Lowry over the summer. We would be focusing on impressionism and by observing closely at different artworks we were to create a masterpiece by ourselves. To expand on our ideas, our teachers let us explore the Philadelphia Museum of Art which housed quite a few impressionist artworks. I anxiously walked through the exhibit, hoping some kind of concept of what I wanted to do would bloom in my mind. I stared deep into the paintings as if I were to be dragged into it like a black hole at any moment. I noticed how the painters used strokes to make the painting seem blurry but very subtle to lead the viewer to their imagination. I already had experience in painting but I wanted this to be something new and mysterious. This task was going to be unique and I was determined to make it the best I can.

It was finally time to paint and I chose the scene where the main character, Annemarie, found peace amongst the chaos during WWll. She was watching fireworks in the night sky. I wanted to start at an angle where the view was through her eyes like she was directly seeing it. I had to put myself in her shoes and painting the scene in that very moment. As we sat in class, I let myself go and let my mind and hands do all the work. I allowed my emotions get to me and tried to feel what Annemarie would have felt so that the scenery would be powerful. It screamed happiness and excitement but sadness all at the same time. It was like you would get the same thrill of watching fireworks and just looking at the painting and being there yourself. It represented that even during the darkest times there was light.

I started from one small sparkle to a massive firework like Annemarie herself, just a young girl with great ambitions. I painted some small, and some larger than others using bright, and alive colors that brings joy within us. I painted the dark black buildings, which were above the water. They stood tall, the pigmented color of black, as prominent as ever. I painted the water with ripples and reflections and look as if it was glistening, like you can reach out and touch it. If you looked close enough it seemed as if it is moving and you can hear the soothing quiet sounds of the water. I didn’t let myself stop until I felt as if there was nothing left to add.

This all came back to how everybody thinks art is just something you accomplish just for a leisure activity. It’s something that gives people joy, it’s something you can’t throw away or hide, it’s something someone should spend time on or make it their career. It allows people to express themselves whatever the situation you are in. Whether you are angry, emotional, happy, those moods allow you to produce different types of art and makes it meaningful. It is a way of finding peace. It is the positive vibes during the bad times.

Art is dependent on ourselves. It’s on you whether you want to express this talent of yours that other people may not have. A majority of people think that arts isn’t something you should focus and spend your life on or that you won’t get noticed for it and that doesn’t mean you have to stop doing it all together. Don’t let the negativity stop you. Don’t let it knock you down. Don’t give up. Let it motivate you instead to continue with your passion. “You have the control of your future. Control of you is all in your mind and your hands. Don’t let anybody take control of your future other than you,” states Dina Torkia (UK Stylist). It’s not just in arts but other subjects as well. People telling you what to be when you grow up or what to do. Today, it’s like society has your fate written, you have to be a doctor or engineer. As Dina said, your mind and your hands give you the ability to do what you want in your life so do not let what people say get to you. This is what I have learned from this experience; get past the barriers and reach for whatever you want in life. It may take time but you will eventually get it. I could not figure out what to do with the empty canvas. But I got passed it all and produced something that was valuable. It’s not just the tiny things like this assignment, but the larger things in life.

It was as if someone snapped their fingers and brought me back to reality, that I realized I had something to finally write about. I opened my eyes and smiled and let myself and my hands type away, like I was painting once again.