Abstract by Jean Myers
When I was in Junior High School I took an art class.
I was always excited when we got new projects to work on- plus our art teacher was so cool that you actually liked going to class and it was fun to jump off that cliff of expression straight into the wild that raging river of creativity running below it.
Of course, the only problem was I made a mess of all of my projects, I never got better then a “C” on my work. The “C” meant average, and that was with pity points because I showed up to class everyday and participated in discussions.
You’d never guess I came from a family where artists and great photographers ran all over our family tree like wild monkeys in an overloaded banana tree- but that was the case.
I guess I was like one of those baby monkeys that fell out of the tree and snapped it’s neck on the way down because friends, I was not as talented as the rest of my family.
Not by a long shot.
Photo A.M. Moscoso
.Twice a week I had to bring my Telecaster Guitar to class because I had music lessons after school and no way was I going to leave it in my locker or in the Principal’s Office- it’s not that I couldn’t trust him, it’s just that if he wasn’t in his office the door was locked and I had a bus to catch so that wasn’t really an option.
Anyway my art teacher used to ask if he could play my guitar and I’d let him, and then I’d play a little.
He knew I was good at creative writing and sometimes he’d tell me my English teacher would show my work in the break room and how much he and the other teachers had enjoyed what I’d written.
” You’re a pretty talented cookie and you’re funny.” He said more then once.
These conversations of course took place over the mutilated remains of that weeks project. It wasn’t as awkward as you’d think.
Our teacher graded the projects on the spot. He never said the grade out loud. He’d just go over the technical aspects and ask you to tell a little story about the why of it all.
I used to enjoy that- I mean stories with pictures. What wasn’t to love?
Once I looked down at one of those sad little things I’d dragged DOA into the world and was getting ready to pitch it in the trash after I’d gotten my standard ” C ” grade. My teacher was about to walk to the next project and I’d sort of said, before I dropped it into the can ” I’m no artist. That’s for sure. “
My teacher turned back and said to me, with surprise ” Yes you are an artist Anita. Yes you are.”
Photo A.M. Moscoso