Growing up, everyone’s different, but to most I seemed more different because I have Autism (thankfully on the high functioning end of the spectrum) and ADHD. When I was young, I found out that art was something I enjoyed, and I liked doing arts and crafts almost every day. As I got older, my creativity evolved in many ways. I went from someone who liked to draw and paint and to someone who enjoys taking pictures, making videos, and collages. I took a few art by hand classes such as art appreciation, drawing, and ceramics, however those classes didn’t appeal to me, mostly because my hand art just didn’t look as good or realistic as the other students work. To me that was proof that art by hand was not for me. During my Junior year of high school, I took a photography class. I enjoyed walking around the campus taking pictures of objects and editing them on the computer. I especially liked an assignment called the “alphabet poster”.. The theme I chose for this assignment was sports photography and I found it very fun to take pictures of sports equipment, clothing, trophies, medals, basketball hoops, etc. This was the project that shifted my interest to digital arts. I took a video media arts class in my senior year, however I didn’t like it as much as my photography class however it did teach me a lot about how movies and videos work.

Since my father, a Marine, was being stationed at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa Florida, I began looking for a local college. When I applied to The University of Tampa, I wanted to major in Digital Arts because there is photography and film making involved in the program, but I had a rocky start. When I had my first FMX course we had to make a blog on the first day.  I felt as though I wasn’t ready for that yet, so I dropped the class and decided to take it in spring 2018. That was the best decision because my professor for that class and curriculum advisor, Santiago Echeverry, knew I had the passion. He was also a great support and an excellent professor. I enjoyed learning about all the Adobe software programs such as Dreamweaver, Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign etc. It wasn’t just that one class though, the FMX department provided many opportunities and classes that have sparked my interests in computer art. One of my favorite classes was 3D printing. I enjoyed making models and creative coding. The animation classes were also quite enjoyable despite being very challenging.

When Mr. Echeverry, suggested I should change my major to animation, I was skeptical at first. However, this year once I started getting in the hang of the 3D animation classesI realize that couldn’t agree more. I really enjoy making characters on Autodesk Maya and learning about a texture 3D software called Substance Painter. I want to pursue a career that involves making characters or character design, or perhaps a creative coding career as I enjoy that as well. My core strengths lie somewhere in between 3D animation (in Autodesk Maya not Cinema 4D) and creative coding on Adobe Dreamweaver. I am also proficient in Adobe illustrator (I liked the post card assignment from FMX 210 Digital Media Arts), Photoshop, and Premiere. I also enjoy making films. Throughout the courses I took in my major, I think my weaknesses include 2D animation because I didn’t enjoy drawing on the tablet and I felt that my work came out sloppy. Another weakness of mine is digital illustration because I’m skilled at drawing or making digital drawings that look as realistic. I may have needed a little bit more training in digital drawing and getting comfortable to using a drawing tablet.