July 10, 2017
"Meet a Community Art Star" is a regular feature showcasing ArtStarts' amazing group of volunteers who are passionate, enthusiastic arts champions. Read more posts in this series.
Rachelle Oh is a long-time volunteer with ArtStarts. You'll no doubt recognize her friendly smile from our monthly ArtStarts at River Market events in New Westminster. Rachelle thrives on creativity and loves to to share her passion for art with others.
Hi Rachelle! Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
I am an interior design student at Kwantlen Polytechnic University and a freelance graphic designer. I also currently work as an interior design intern at Hospitality Designs and I have been volunteering at ArtStarts at River Market one Sunday a month for about four years now. During my free time, I go around Vancouver to explore and discover something new with my friends and have fun under the sun. I'm also on my summer quest to finding the best cold brews in Vancouver.
Where did art start for you?
Art started for me ever since the very beginning. It was something I always did and enjoyed, whether it was painting, drawing or making arts and crafts. Art was something I enjoyed and loved so much that I would take art classes every summer just to make more art. I remember during classes, while I was taking down notes, I would always have doodles and sketches on every page. Eventually, my notebook with doodles became a sketchbook with notes.
Do you remember a teacher who had a big impact on you?
My Grade 7 art teacher, Mrs Angeles, made the biggest impact in my life with regards to art and where I am now in life. She encouraged and believed in me so much with my abilities that she believed I would become an architect. And although I am not an architecture student today, I am in the same field, focusing on the interior architecture of things. Hence, my being an interior design student. Up to this day, I still have my art projects from her class and remember how she inspired me to be who I am today.
If you could go back in time and tell your five-year-old self something, what would you say?
If I could go back in time, I'd tell my five-year-old self to keep drawing, painting and making art because it is so worth it. And to always follow your heart no matter what everyone says.
What does creativity mean to you?
Creativity, to me, is as important as water. It is the fuel that keeps me going in life and being happy at what I do. Without it, I wouldn't be able to do the things I do today.
How do you connect yourself to creativity in your day-to-day life?
I connect myself to creativity in my day-to-day life through watching shows that promote creativity, sketching and knowing more about what's new and out there.
What do you like about volunteering at ArtStarts at River Market events?
What I love about volunteering at ArtStarts at River Market is the environment and people that make the place so fun and awesome. The space encourages creativity and community engagement, while the people add to the space through their presence and happiness. My favourite moment I've had volunteering so far is when the kids come up and start talking to you about why they love art and why they love going to ArtStarts at River Market. They would even talk about their pet dogs, cats and even hampsters.
How do you think young people and families benefit from being involved in the arts?
Young people and families benefit from being involved in the arts through the knowledge passed on from one another. Art, essentially, is a community that promotes individual creativity and encourages each one to bring their inner artist out. Young people learn to express themselves more, learn to think outside of the box, and learn to engage with one another through art. Families learn to embrace individuality and creativity, and use art as a tool to creating more memories together. Art should not only be seen as a visual tool, but also as a social tool that can be utilized to enhance creativity in more ways than possible.
If you're interested in volunteering with ArtStarts, learn more about current opportunities at artstarts.com/volunteer
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