There’s no denying that Amelia Spencer is an artist. The Warwick Valley Middle School eighth grader likes to sketch with a pencil in the spiral-bound notebooks she carries with her.
Amelia, however, is not sure how she will pursue art in the future.
“I just like creating and executing my ideas into something that I can see and have to show people,” Amelia said. “I do it because it’s fun. I don’t know if I want to keep taking art classes, but I do want to keep drawing.”
A self-portrait wearing sunglasses
Amelia’s favorite art project in school this fall was a self-portrait wearing sunglasses, with the sunglass lenses reflecting her interests.
“I liked the project because we were supposed to be doing it super realistic, but I don’t know how to do that, and if I tried it would probably look bad,” Amelia said. “So I just did it in my style.”
‘A passionate and creative problem-solver’
Art teacher Nicole Sisco encouraged Amelia to be creative with the self-portrait.
“Amelia asked me about creating a self-portrait in her style,” Sisco said. “I loved that she wanted to bring her own twist to the assignment and could really showcase her hand in her work. I encouraged her to create a work that best demonstrated who she is as an artist. Amelia has a unique style. She often brings a creative spin on our lessons and is a passionate and creative problem-solver.”
Amelia said she likes sketching in spiral notebooks because it feels less official and there’s less pressure to create a good drawing. She also sometimes uses an iPad and Apple Pencil that she got for Christmas a few years ago.
The iPad, Amelia said, makes it easier to fix mistakes and adjust things. She uses a program called Procreate, which is the standard for drawing on the iPad.
“I do a lot of digital art on my iPad,” Amelia said. “My friend had Procreate and he kind of taught me how to use some of the stuff, but mostly I just taught myself. It’s just the default now and I’ve gotten used to the controls.”
‘I don’t want to make art into work’
Although Amelia has taken some art workshops, she does not plan to make art her career.
“I don’t know if I would be very good at it from a career perspective because I’m not a very goal-driven person,” Amelia said. “Also, I don’t want to make art into work. I never want to turn a hobby into a job because I feel like that would ruin everything.”