Class of 2014 Senior Art Profiles

Three seniors at Whitman will be heading down the creative path after graduation. The Pioneer caught up with each of them before they leave to discuss what they will miss about Whitman, their plans for the future and how their creativity will drive their careers. 

Katie Gorman
Environmental Art

Katie Gorman

Photo by Marra Clay

“[The Sitka Center of Art and Ecology is] an art center in Oregon that hosts residents in the off-season, but in the summer provides workshops for adults to come and take ecologically-based nature-centric art classes. There’s dyeing textiles with natural materials or painting landscapes. The center is in a beautiful part of Oregon so it’s a very beautiful natural setting … I’ll be generally helping … then the workshop coordinator will be taking some time off, so I’ll fill in for her while she’s gone. So that entails making sure that the coming artists are comfortable and provided for and making sure that students who come to the center have everything they need and have a great time … Since coming to Whitman, I’ve been more involved in outdoor activities like backpacking and such. Also, I’m an art major, so the two sets of interests sort of collide in this job. I heard about it through the internships listserv that the Student Engagement Center puts out … I’d like to travel and try working at art centers around the United States or even abroad. If that doesn’t work out, I at least see the experience I get from working there.”

Sam Halgren

Photo by Marra Clay

Sam Halgren

“The most exciting part about moving to New York for theatre is that you don’t really know what you’re going to do. Step one is finding a place to live, step two is finding a job, probably not in theatre, and then step three is just going to a lot of auditions with the knowledge that I’m probably not going to be [cast] for a year or two. I’ll be moving out there with two theatre majors here … All my life I’ve tried to get away from theatre because it’s such a silly profession to pursue if you actually want to make money. I tried being a lot of different things … but nothing resonated with me like theatre did. In sophomore year I applied to go abroad in London … and as soon as I did that, I declared a theatre major. Whitman’s theatre department was surprisingly fantastic for theatre majors: you learn so many different aspects … All you can ask for is to have work, even if it’s very little money or no money at all. I would really like to form a theatre company in some way or be a part of a regional theatre. If you can get that consistency in some way, that’s ideal. Teaching theatre … would also be a blast.”

Erika Zinser

Erika Zinger

Photo by Marra Clay

“I got two job offers. I stalked my boss, basically, to get me an internship [at Disney]. I went down to Los Angeles and found out it would be impossible to get into the Disney studios development compound, so I researched Disney-producing companies outside the compound. I found one and met with the CEO, and after a really long talk of telling me my dreams could not be done, I kept my ground. I worked for him … and because I did such a good job, he got me [a position] as a production assistant at Disney studios. There, I met with all the Disney people, and they offered me a job as a background designer. When I told this to my former boss [from the internship], he told me, ‘That’s great, but I have a job offer as well.’ I had the offer from Disney, but I think I’m going to take [the other] offer because then I’ll be working with Dreamworks and Universal while working at Disney at the same time … I didn’t know I wanted to be an artist when I applied to Whitman … but taking art classes here, I realized that what I was doing in … my free time, drawing, was what I actually wanted to do … I have a specific life plan … the ultimate goal is to win an Oscar in animated film … and it will happen. But first I need to get involved in the animation industry and business. I see myself as John Lasseter in 50 years.”

Filed under: A&E Circuit


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