How to Choose a College: Clara Lieu’s Sage Advice to Art College Applicants
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How to Choose a College: Clara Lieu’s Sage Advice to Art College
Your journey towards a successf ul career starts with how to choose a college. Proper study habits, work
etiquette, along with other disciplines are instilled in us as early as preschool. Your education level
advances through the years and reaches the collegiate level wherein we receive a more career-oriented
At this stage enters, you begin to ask these regarding how to choose a college:
Where should I study?
What should I study?
How do I get in to those schools?
For these questions, Karen Kesteloot, “Admission Insider” and f ounder of
Portprep, f inds the answers during her interview with Rhode Island School
of Design prof essor Clara Lieu.
Clara Lieu is also a writer and a visual artist with works exploring the themes
of isolation and mental illness with an interdisciplinary approach which
includes drawing, printmaking, and sculpture. She completed a BFA in
Illustration at the Rhode Island School of Design and an MFA in Sculpture at
the New York Academy of Art.
She blogs f or the Huf f ington Post, where she writes an advice column f or
visual artists called “Ask the Art Prof essor”. She authored the book “Learn,
Create, and Teach: A Guide to Building a Creative Lif e” in 2013.
T he video below shares Clara Lieu’s thoughts in f inding the right course and
university f or you.
Key t akeaways on how t o choose a college
Clara Lie u. Clic k he re to vie w
imag e s o urc e .
Focus on your PASSION rather than expected income
It is common f or college applicants to look f or careers that pay a lot. Clara explains why this shouldn’t be the
case and points out the importance of your passion in the subject that you will choose.
Passion will not only make your ef f orts f eel somewhat lighter but sustainable as well. You cannot exert your
best and keep your ef f orts at the highest possible level always if you do not enjoy what you do. Passion
creates that burning desire f or you to excel without f ail in the craf t that you choose, regardless of the
obstacles you f ace in the course.
You must, theref ore, never use the expected income impression for a job as basis for the college course you will
apply for. Clara explains how success – wealth, to be more specif ic – comes only af ter hard work and is not
dependent on certain jobs alone. You can succeed if you love what you do and properly apply your knowledge
f or it.
Listen to your HEART, seek the true color and shape of your SOUL
What’s in your heart and soul determines who you are and what career
you shall take. Pursue what you are passionate about.
Your parents and peers may have career pref erences and
recommendations f or you, but it is still up to you on how to choose a
college and which career to take. It is better to chase early the career of
your choice rather than initially start a dif f erent course and eventually
realize that you are miles away f rom things that you love to do. Being in a
wrong f ield of education/work will not only diminish your drive and
ef f iciency at your practice, it may also connote years of delay, wasted
time even, towards your true calling.
T2i – Re d He art (Pho to c re d it:
@Do ug 88888)
DRAW f rom LIFE
In preparing your art portf olio f or your college application, draw f rom lif e and not f rom a photograph. Drawing
f rom direct observation f orces you to engage directly with a subject, while drawing f rom a photograph does
not. Drawing f rom lif e is an experience – you can smell, hear, f eel, and see your subject. You can view your
subject f rom another side; you can look on top of it and see a whole new perspective.
In drawing f rom a photograph, you will miss out many aspects and possibilities. A lot of drawing is about
learning how to see. More than half part of the drawing is really learning to investigate the subject in a very
deep way. T he only way to be part of this process is to observe in real lif e.
Working f rom lif e is harder and more challenging because it lets you process things dif f erently. Drawing f rom a
photograph is much easier but a Bad Shortcut – it will not be good f or an artist and develop lots of bad habits
in your drawing that will be dif f icult to undo later. If you want to get ahead of the game, draw f rom lif e.
In assessing portf olios, a trained eye distinguishes artworks drawn f rom real lif e f rom those drawn f rom a
photograph. It is important f or the assessor to see your vision and how you connect with the subject. Let your
art portf olio showcase your skills and diversity, technique and concept. Express your personality and present
original ideas and approach to your subject. Your interpretation to the subject will communicate what you are
made of and what is unique about you. Your opinion and f eelings towards the subject ref lects in your work.
Read on “How to Start Drawing Landscape Designs in 4 Simple Steps” to relate drawing with life.
Explore and be OPEN-MINDED
Once you have f igured out how to choose a college, show them that you have the drive and self -initiative in
accomplishing artistic f eats. In this regard, be ready to try different things – learn and exercise dif f erent
techniques and try to work using dif f erent approaches and discover your strengths and weaknesses. By doing
these things, you will surely improve your skills and better prepare you f or the challenges ahead.
Do you want to kickoff the path towards a successful career, especially with how to choose a college?
Check out Karen’s Coaching Services to get the right package for your portfolio development. Click here
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