AP Art program highlights student passion, creativity


Alyssa Clark

As she works with clay, junior AP 3D art student Conner Frey makes a cow to answer her guiding question over culture. With this project, she is covering how Hindu people view cows as sacred. Her guiding question for her class is about exploration through art.

Students here are involved in many different activities: sports, band, special clubs, but there are some students creating pieces of art in the Advanced Placement Art classes.

“I took AP Drawing because I wanted more of a challenge instead of doing a basic art class,” junior and AP Drawing student Paige Schultz said.

Students are expected to create a portfolio, which is a collection of artwork, made up of 15 different pieces that all need to answer a basic guiding question that they select at the beginning of the year.

“I think my favorite was the skeleton. I drew a skeleton holding a phone, and I cut it out with an Exacto knife,” Schultz said, “I got this piece of paper and rolled paint with different splotches, and I put a Mona Lisa stamp all over it.”

They also need to document the progress and show how they came up with the idea, finish projects with excellence in short deadlines, and constantly think about what they’re going to do next. 

“I’ve been a teacher for seven years, and I’ve been teaching AP for two years. I think that the hardest part about AP is that many of our students, while we pace them. They also have to be self-paced,” AP art teacher Paige Trujillo said. “They work at home, a lot of times, and they also come into class and work in an open-studio environment. So learning to set goals and achieving little goals over time is one of the most difficult things for our students.”

For students who want to talke AP 3D, they will need to take Art 1 first.

“Follow whatever discipline you’re passionate about. So if you’re passionate about sculpture, ceramics, you can take AP 3D,” Trujillo said. “We also have AP Art History for students who are really passionate about that, and AP 2D for students who are passionate about drawing and painting.”

But the stress and hard work that is dedicated to these pieces of art shine through, and these students create amazing work.

“I took AP 3D because last year I made it to state with one of my art pieces, and my teacher, Mrs. Mock, really encouraged me to be in AP,” junior and AP 3D student Conner Frey said. “Last year was my first year, so it was kind of a shock going from stage one to stage four.”

The class provides the freedom to try new things, and explore all different types of art.

“I like to be super detailed in my art, and this type of class doesn’t really allow you to be super detailed most of the time. You don’t really have time to do it, so I’m pretty far behind as of right now because I’ve been doing a lot of detailing,” Frey said. “Only take the class if you’re really passionate about art. If you’re not really passionate about art, then you probably won’t spend as much time as you should on it, but I still love it. So if you really want to do it, do it. But, if you’re not passionate about it, you shouldn’t do it.”