Arts and Crafts for the Graduate School Bound

Wednesday, March 21, 2012
So the Spring quarter has started at DU, and I'm taking my last lower level "common learning experience." It's called Discovering Creative Energies, and this is the course description:
Everyone has a creative core. It can become hidden or lost, but the ability to recognize one’s creative source and tap into it at will provides an increased range of communication options. This course focuses on discovering and developing the creative self through various art forms and disciplines. Students will be challenged to solve problems, take risks, and look at themselves and their creative energies in new ways. The experiences and activities of this course build skills and confidence in using one’s creativity in daily life.
Supplies for this class include an artistic journal, water colors, colored pencils, crayons and a glue stick.

I swear I'm not making that up.

When I first read the syllabus I sneered a bit, and when I read the supply list, I sneered a lot. What is this? Art therapy? Arts and crafts for the graduate school bound? Crayons? Really?

Then I tried to get over myself and take it in the spirit it's intended. Keeping an "artistic journal" might be fun, right? I can draw pictures of Boogie, in all his lumpy wonder. I can write free form poetry about how standing up to bullies is the new cornerstone of my life. I can create a visual representation of my disgust with the misogynists who wish I'd shut the hell up about all this "equal rights" nonsense and go make them a sandwich. 

Fun, right?

I think so, but not $1,960.00 worth of fun (excluding the cost of art supplies). It's a good thing my company is paying my tuition, and that I can justify the class with the fact that it's required for my degree program.

12 comments:

Stacey said...

There is real value, as you know, in looking at issues from a different perspective. It seems like this class is exploring that option through the creative brain rather than the linear brain. It sounds like a lot of fun, but certainly not as easy as the description implies.

Phiala said...

Oooh.

That's the kind of course that depends entirely on the personality of the instructor. I could see it being really interesting, and bringing in learning styles, cognitive methodologies, etc.

But it won't.

Dana Teel said...

I'm pretty sure I passed the same course in 3rd grade. I'm glad I don't have to explain to my boss why I'm taking the same course again in college and asking the company to pay for it. I'll leave that to the professional wordsmiths.

Warner said...

You are being told you must express yourself through the instructor's or the department heads media not your media.

I had to do something like that in a required course, I turned in the set and lighting design of the musical Fantastiks and paid the instructor's admission.

Janiece said...

I'm trying to keep a positive attitude, here, people YOU'RE SUPPOSED TO BE HELPING ME EMBRACE THE FUN.

Stacey said...

I think it will be fun. I'm excited for you. I don't discount looking at a project from a creative side instead of a linear thought perspective. If I was your boss, I'd be glad that you are taking this course. It makes you a better asset to the team to be able to do so. Not every problem can be solved with programming.

Carol Elaine said...

I agree with Stacey - this could really be a lot of fun. Embrace it!

Though if they insist that you buy glitter and finger paints, I'd start wondering about that instructor.

Random Michelle K said...

I think it will be fun!

One of my favorite courses I took in undergrad was an English elective on journaling.

It ended up teaching me things I've used for the rest of my life. (One thing we did was keep a dream journal. Dreams are your brains way of telling you things and working out problems. The more you focus on trying to remember your dreams, the more dreams you remember. The things you remember and think about may help you to resolve problems in the waking world.)

Creativity is IMPORTANT in life, and not just when playing with small kids.

When you practice being creative on a regular basis, it can eventually become something that is second nature to you, and is truly, deeply, helpful in problem solving, because you learn to step back (sometimes you need to step way back) and look at a problem from a completely different perspective.

Plus: it's good for your brain.

Janiece said...

Michelle, I'm all about doing things that are good for my brain.

Nokiahouse said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Janiece said...

*TONG*

Jeri said...

I'm really late to this party, but I would kill to have someone pay for me to enhance my artistic skills. Creativity I've got up the wazoo; my problem is in the execution of getting my most awe-inspiring visions (do they have any courses on humility?) out of my head and into whatever media I've decided to use. Aarrrgh!

Have fun with it. There is no right and wrong in art - it's really nothing but self-expression using other forms of communication than words. Some people will relate, others won't.