I Am Not Artistic

But most of you probably already knew that. Especially if you went to high school with me.

One point five credits, or three trimester classes, of art were required to graduate from Uintah High School. But I was far more concerned with taking USU concurrent enrollment and AP courses to be distracted with art classes. So I put them all off until the very last trimester of my senior year.

I still vote that Clothing or Creative Writing should have fulfilled art requirements, but whatever. . . And I guess it's actually questionable whether my sewing class should have earned me any credits at all. But I finally picked USU Photography, Ceramics, and Sculpture.

I started all three art classes, along with Clothing II and Weights, my very last trimester of high school. Tough schedule, I know. And then it was determined that I needed my tonsils removed. I was out of school for two solid weeks, went back for one day, hemorrhaged, and was out for an additional two. Four weeks! I was also involved in a number extracurricular activities that trimester, including Executive Council, FBLA, and Track, that required (or maybe allowed) me to miss additional days of school. And there were a couple of times that I really needed to go canoeing at Red Fleet and the irrigation canals with Jason Dilworth.

Good thing I had "easy" classes. I did great with the photography class. In fact, I did all my work and extra for one of my friends. Ceramics was okay too because the teacher was quite pleasant and excused all of my excusable absences, as expected. But Brock Thorne's Sculpture class didn't work out so well.

He was not impressed with my attendance or my art skills. In fact, he actually asked to keep one of my projects as an example of "what not to do". I was eager to keep my 4.0 grade point average, even though it didn't really matter anymore. I had already secured my scholarships, so really, all I needed to do was pass the class.

But I was used to earning A's, so I tried. I really did. But it didn't matter. Brock Thorne had already decided that it was his obligation to ruin my perfect GPA. He gave me a B+. But that's not all. He then went to the administration and insisted that I be taken off the list of valedictorians because, upon graduation, I would no longer have a 4.0 GPA. The vice principal told him that valedictorians had always been determined based on their grades after the second trimester; third trimester grades weren't factored in. But he persisted. And insisted.

I didn't care much about being valedictorian anyway, so I told the vice principal to take me off the list. More irritating, was how concerned this teacher was with my GPA.

So, I am not artistic. And it's not just visual arts. . . it's performing arts too. I really don't get very excited about ballets, plays, or musicals. I might have fallen asleep during a few Shakespeare plays at the festival in Cedar City. And, much like drinking milk, I often have to convince myself that I should like going on tours and to museums. (Regrettably, I didn't listen to one word of the Chichen Itza tour I went on in Mexico when I was eighteen.)

But now I have kids. Specifically, two girls named Rachel and Lucy. They are engrossed with all things artistic and both have fascinating imaginations. So I make a conscious effort to expose them to the arts and allow them to develop their interests. We have Craft Day every Wednesday. (Well, most Wednesdays.) I chase them around at the Treehouse Museum, even though I would much rather taken them on a bike ride or sit on a stationary bench while they play at the park. I try to take them to ballets, plays, musicals, and to the art center that is conveniently located two doors down from us. (And hurray for grandmas who take them to plays too!)

But last week, I may have experienced art-overload. (Remember, my threshold is lower than most.)

On Wednesday, we went to Logan to see Seussical the Musical. It was quite enjoyable; it really was. I loved watching Rachel, Lucy, and cousin Fred's facial expressions throughout the show. I texted Steve about some things I had looked up on the internet on my phone. He responded back, "that good, huh?" But it was intermission. I really did have a good time at the show, and I really did marry my match.

As we walked out of the theatre, we passed these really amazing shoe art projects. The girls haven't stopped talking about them.

On Friday, we went to Salt Lake to go to the Family History Library (more on that later) and spent some time walking around Temple Square. The kids all stood on the platforms above the temple stairs and pretended to pose for wedding pictures. We went to one of the visitor's centers and Rachel and Lucy just had to go inside to see the tabernacle.

Saturday we had family pictures taken (that's artistic, right?) But maybe that doesn't count since I wasn't willing to participate in some of the "artistic" arrangements and poses our photographer requested. Steve and I didn't even kiss for her. (The photo above was taken with my phone while we were waiting to meet up with Andrea. I didn't want you to think that was one of her pictures :)

And then on Saturday night, I took the kids to the Treehouse Museum to watch the Treehouse Troupe's production of the fairytale, Puss in Boots, with their Malouf cousins. Lucy and Fred were both selected out of the audience to go up on stage and "help" with the play. Afterwards, all of the children were invited to ask the actors questions. And that's when I was done. I think we'd gone through fifteen questions, and there were at least that many more hands raised. Sam was encouraging Rachel to ask a question, and Adam kept raising his hand, but I had had enough. I sat there wondering how painful it would be for me if I had married an actor. Good thing I've got Steve.

And Brock Thorne. . . his art is being featured at the Eccles Art Center this month. Maybe I should take my girls to go see it? Show him that I turned out okay. Without an A in his Sculpture class.


Jenny said...

I made one of those shoes in my 3-D design class at USU. It even got displayed in the hall. It was the first time anything I created got showcased. I was quite pleased. Especially since I didn't start it until the night before. I think Wade was wondering why he married me that night.

Ryanne said...

You must have made quite the impression for that teacher to have such a vendetta against you! That's ridiculous!

Rebecca said...

You are too artistic. You put together cute outfits for a family of 7...you take great pictures...you do cute hair...you make great food...and you live a beautiful life...and the list goes on.

Just because some teacher gave you a B+ in sculpture does not mean you are not artistic! I have a BFA and I cannot do anything 3-D...sculptures, hair, etc...

And I don't like going to museums with guided tours...I much prefer to just look by myself, and usually I go through pretty quick...I get too bored otherwise. This is probably one reason I saw almost zero historical sites while living in Virginia for 3 years despite living so close to so many.

I thought Puss and Boots was a little long if you know what I mean and I skipped out on the questions so you are a trooper:)

Rebecca said...

I think what I meant to say was "You are artistic" Not too as in too much but I think just plain "to". :)

@udj said...

I want to see these family pictures. And it makes me smile to think of you and Steve in a cute "pose." Is that shot on your phone the place where we were going to take my yellow canoe and have Rebecca take pictures?
I love posts like this, stories of the past and present coming together. I've always thought of you as artistic by the way.

emily ballard said...

Jenny: I am impressed.
Ryanne: I think he was trying to make a statement that his class wasn't "easy". And so he was going to make sure the smart girl didn't get an A.
Rebecca: Thank you. But you'll notice that everything is very right-brained. Lots of straight lines.
Audrey: I'm lucky I talked Steve into any sort of family pictures at all. He used to say they were only allowed every seven years. Who knows where he came up with that. Rebecca wanted to take pictures with your canoe at Beus Pond, but then decided against it for silly safety reasons. Safety Schmafety.

Lori said...

man. i would pay to see a cheesy emily/steve picture. pay.