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Losing creativity: Art teachers speak out

The+detailed+painting+above+%28center+canvas%29+can+be+described+as+nothing+but+a+masterpiece.+With+meticulous+detail+work%2C+Mrs.+Sunil+puts+hours+of+time+into+perfecting+her+paintings%2C+and+making+sure+each+piece+expresses+strong+emotions+or+themes.+
The detailed painting above (center canvas) can be described as nothing but a masterpiece. With meticulous detail work, Mrs. Sunil puts hours of time into perfecting her paintings, and making sure each piece expresses strong emotions or themes.

The detailed painting above (center canvas) can be described as nothing but a masterpiece. With meticulous detail work, Mrs. Sunil puts hours of time into perfecting her paintings, and making sure each piece expresses strong emotions or themes.

Shreya Mishra

Shreya Mishra

The detailed painting above (center canvas) can be described as nothing but a masterpiece. With meticulous detail work, Mrs. Sunil puts hours of time into perfecting her paintings, and making sure each piece expresses strong emotions or themes.

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With each brush stroke and a mix of paint in the messy, yet beautiful palette, the image of an alluring rosebud falls together. She smiles in satisfaction as her imagination of the bespeckled beauty begins to become a reality.  Soon enough, however, she hears the chime of the door as it opens, and the sounds of small children ranting about their school days while taking a seat in a chair they remain in for an hour each weekend.

The 180° photo above displays many of Mrs. Vijitha’s best works, including a melted crayon wax artwork of a medieval elephant and flower, and a folk abstract acrylic art piece, which represents maturity and creativity. (To navigate the image hold down both of the mouse keys)

If I do art, I will get positive energy, and my mind flows into new ideas, making me more creative. It’s a self satisfaction; a strong positive energy.”

— Vijitha Sunil

On Saturday afternoons, Vijitha Sunil, a local art teacher who holds instructional classes in her home. She sets up tables and chairs to hold 10-15 people who aspire to grow in art. Sunil not only teaches younger students, she also guides older high school students and even some adults. She began her passion for art when she was just a fifth grader, and studied art in college. Many years later, Sunil transformed her passion for art into a small class, with the purpose of motivating kids to start trying new things and developing passions at a young age. However, a recent concern that she has observed has possibly changed many students’ perspectives on art forever.

Shreya Mishra
With melted crayon wax, Mrs. Vijitha crafts each of her pieces with intricate attention to detail, and a perfectionist mindset. In the coy-fish painting, each drop of wax had to be placed decisively, which displays patience, and exceptional respect for the process.

Around five years ago, a batch of excited fourth and fifth graders joined her class, desperate to become the best they could at watercolor painting. Those students are now freshman and sophomores in high school, with tight schedules and packed weekends. This leaves Mrs. Vijitha in dismay and she feels a disconnect between her students.

“I think they’re interest [in art] is very strong in elementary school and middle school. Whenever they move into high school, they don’t want to spend time with things, and really focus and concentrate. I think the technology might contribute, because they can get things fast with [technology].”

As students age, they become very open to more topics, hobbies, and interest, and the arts seem to always face the consequences of that change. Since 2010, there has been a decline of 32% in the children who participate in “The Arts’ programs at the GCSE level. Mrs. Sunil considers this one of the biggest dilemma’s she faces in her art-teaching career. She is confused as to why the students she considered family rarely attend the class anymore.

“We no longer find the time to commit to an hour-long weekly class”, says Ria Kaimal, a freshman at South Forsyth High School.

Shreya Mishra
Studies suggest that museum visits have dropped significantly, which leads many to think that contemporary and old art forms are slowly diminishing, and classic artists are having to find new ways to display their work, and innovatively captivate an audience. Students prefer viewing a digital art software compared to an art palette filled with layers of acrylic paints.

 

Everything she says, however, isn’t entirely negative. She speaks on how gratifying her teaching experience has been, and how blessed she feels each day to pass on to children the interest in art. While many days can be tough for her as she processes changes, the situation shines a light on the importance of developing a sense of charter and maturity into students at a young age, which will possibly prevent a loss of interest of theirs in hobbies that were once their passions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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About the Contributor
Shreya Mishra, Social Media Lead

Shreya Mishra is a freshman at South Forsyth High School, and is exceptionally excited to be working on the journalism staff this year. She enjoys creative writing, opinion writing, and photography. Out of school, she is an extremely passionate dancer of 7 years, and an artist since she could write. Shreya has won many competitions for public speaking, and plans to grow her debating and speech-giving throughout school. When she grows up, Shreya wants to go into business marketing or journalism. She...

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Losing creativity: Art teachers speak out