Art Rooms…


One of my favorite memories from my youth was spending time in the art room. Probably some of you are rolling your eyes and thinking, “Oh, that makes sense, she seems the type…”

I’m creative at best. I can’t claim to be an ‘artist’ in the classic sense of the word. Everything I do is fairly elementary and primitive, abstract and impressionistic. Probably nothing you would frame or display with any sense of pride.

I like these proportions.


I hated going to the library and learning about the stupid card catalog. I’m dyslexic, imagine how difficult it was for me to alphabetize! Ugh! I loved Gym class (as long as we weren’t doing gymnastics), but Art was my sanctuary, I looked forward to it all week. (I should mention that I looked forward to lunch most of all. Even though my mom would put too much grape jelly on my peanut butter sandwich and the bread would get saturated… it was still great to be free of the classroom environment.)


My earliest memory is wearing my father’s old shirt for a smock. I would slip it on with the buttons in the back. It came down past my knees. The teacher would help me roll up the sleeves but inevitably they’d fall and destroy whatever I was working on. By the end of the year my smock was crunchy with paint splatter, clay, and glue.

I just remembered Paper Mache, those little strips of newspaper and the balloon!

You won't see this hanging at the Art Institute, but still....

The smell of the art room is another memory. I have a very keen sense of smell. (Not a great thing when you’re on the smelly streets of New York – Eww!) Anyway, I love the smell of fresh supplies; xerox copies, paper fresh out of the wrapper, glue (I can assure you I didn’t sniff glue), crayons, paint, clay, ink, chemicals, etc. To this day, if I get that  sensation, it takes me right back. Did I mention that the Art teachers always loved me?

I liked sitting at the table with the boys because they would always make me laugh. It was like comedy hour. Maybe this is yet another reason why I looked forward to Art?


In High school it became obvious that there were REAL ARTISTS among us, and I was not one of them. But still, you couldn’t keep me from the art room. I ended up doing a lot of photography (again, the smell of the chemicals…) throwing pots, ceramics, working with found objects, etc. Do any of you remember the disappointment of glazing your pot, believing it would look amazing when it was all finished, only to have it returned from the kiln with a major fracture  running down the side? Or the glaze that you thought was cobalt ended up looking like gray puke? These were the ‘gifts’ I’d give to my mother.

Happy Mother's Day!!!

The worst part of the whole art room experience was clean-up. I think we can all agree on this. And because I always chose to sit at the table with the boys, I ended up doing all most of the cleaning. (That’s right, boys suck at clean-up. I said it.)

I hope you enjoyed this little trip down memory lane.