Everything in the past couple of weeks has been overwhelming.
School has gone from a feeling of “I got this, I can handle this,” to “Holy shit, I’m fucked. I’m fucked!” about once a day, everyday. And in the midst of drowning, a dingy comes and there is a glimpse of hope. Last Tuesday I got pulled out of my class to talk to a teacher that I did not know. She told me that of the entire junior photo class that I was one of the three selected to receive this scholarship. The way it works is that you get a 50% discount for attending these summer workshops at Peter’s Valley Craft Center in New Jersey. I was floored. The teachers selected me for some reason. I know my work is pretty good, but I feel like this semester I have struggled so much and have nothing really good to show for it. But hey, they see something in me and I will be damned to not take them up on every opportunity they allow me.
By Thursday I had fallen back into my stressed out, crazed state of mind that comes with when I feel like I am not being productive enough. I went to class where we were having a guest speaker come and demo for us some really neat alternative printing processes. I was the first student there, so I got to meet the artist and talk to him for a bit on a personal level (always a good thing, networking). So class begun and I was floored. He is an amazing digital printer (the one thing that I feel I am really weak at). I remembered where he was based out of and realized that he would be a great internship for the summer–with him personally or with his studio/gallery. I made sure to leave with his contact information and e-mailed him over the weekend. Now we just have to wait.
But while he was demoing, I got pulled aside again and handed an envelope that read “Urgent” in bright red letters in that really lovely stamp text. I started freaking out. I thought it had to do with some paper I found on the Lost and Found rack and took since I saw it sitting there for almost a week (hey, that shit is expensive, and if everyone is just going to walk by it, I will at least put it to good use). I opened the envelope. It read, “I am pleased to inform you…” blah blah blah. Another scholarship opportunity. This one, even more exclusive than the other. During our break I asked my teacher (who happens to be my advisor as well) what it was all about. She said, “Is that the Alexander? Yeah. Yeah… that’s a big fucking deal, Steven.” Only two people get selected from every department from the school and then there is a jury to look at our work and ONE person from the entire school gets this award. But you receive it after you graduate. Amazing.
But the issue with all of that is that the deadlines are all next week. That means I have to make final prints, mat them, frame them, and hang them for jurying. I also have to make a digital portfolio for another grant for this Friday. And hang my work elsewhere the day after the jurying for the Junior Photo Show… Too much! But I will get by.
But. Thursday is my 21st birthday… My brother is coming from Rochester, NY for it and I still have to manage to get all this real-life stuff done. “I got this, I can handle this.”