DAREarts Grad Kalli at the OCAD Summer Intensive Program

Recently, DAREarts was offered the opportunity to send a handful of our grads to OCAD’s Summer Intensive Program, where the youth were given a taste of what it is like to be an OCAD student. One of our grads, Kalli, eagerly took up the opportunity, and below is her reflection on the program:

I thought it was AMAZING! It was so much fun to meet so many like-minded people, who at the same time think completely differently in their own unique and expressive art styles. The moment I walked in, I felt like I was welcome. Everyone there is your friend immediately, and I never felt like I had enough time there. I’m actually connected with all the people I met there on facebook and such now! It was such a great learning experience by trying things hands on (i.e. encaustic [wax] painting) , and learning about other parts of design most people hadn’t known of before (i.e. industrial design.) The speakers everyday were also always interesting, and I always had my mind and ears open when they spoke. I didn’t bring much in my bag everyday, but my head was packing with itching creativity and a thirst of knowledge.

When we first arrived, they gave us an assignment right away: we picked two verbs from a box, and did a piece, any medium or media, and it was due at the end of the week. I immedialy told myself, “This is a chance for you to do something you’ve never done before, to challenge yourself.” And I’ve expirimented with many different mediums; traditional pencil, markers, watercolor, acrylic, oil, charcoal, digital design, digital painting, photo-manipulation, outfit design, fashion, making accessories out of found objects (like gas masks out of knee pads or goggles out of spice container lids), stickers, drafting, film, photography, clay and sculpture, and this list just goes on. So I had to figure out what I haven’t done, but also be true to myself. I decided early on, “I’m going to make something 3-D. But not like my accessories or a sculpture, but I’m going to make something 3-D.” When I recived my words though, I was horrified. “‘STIR’ and ‘REVOLVE’?! But that’s extremely redundant! This doesn’t seem like a challenge, I’m now working with one word in a sense.” (Revolve is actually one of my favorite words though, I just wanted to be rid of Stir.) So for half of the week, I waited for a change to speak with one of the teachers about that, if I could change my words so I could have more of a challenge. Then, during the Thursday, it came to me: “Wait. THIS is the challenge. Having two of such similar words, but making an art piece that must show then both clearly.” In the end I was successful with my piece, and very happy with it. The whole process of it was the art in itself.

I really want to thank everyone who’s made is possible for me to go. If I ever got a chance to go again, I would never hesitate at the opportunity. And I would recommend anyone with the love of visual arts to think the same way.


DAREarts would like to thank OCAD for offering our youth this amazing opportunity that they would not have been able to pursue otherwise.

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