RSOs, other resources give students creative outlets on campus


The Daily Illini File Photo

University Art and Design Professor Shazo Sato explains how to paint bamboo with black ink. Here he teaches his Black Ink Painting class at the Japan House on Nov. 17, 2019.

By Cassidy Brandt, Managing Editor for Visuals

Fuel your creativity in a time of isolation

Are you an artist? Do you like to draw, paint or create art in any way? With so many different ways to be an artist, it can be difficult to find inspiration when you have limited access to experience, supplies or spaces.

Look for art-based RSOs on campus

Even if these RSOs are only meeting online, RSOs that revolve around art can really help you keep up with your creativity while also meeting new and inspiring people. There are RSOs like AIGA, 8 to Create, Flashpoint Photography Club, Noble Print Club and a whole lot more. 

You can find other art RSOs and more at this link:

Contact some organizations on campus to get your work out there

If you’d like to get more experience, get in touch with programs around campus who might need a designer or social media creator. You can send over some of your work or your portfolio, and maybe they’ll give you a chance to add more pieces to it! Win-win! My sophomore year, I reached out to SoFar Sounds Champaign to ask if they needed a designer. From this, I got the opportunity to design posters for a few of their shows. It was an awesome experience and was definitely a time where being spontaneous played out in my favor.

Put an arts class in your class schedule

Even if you’re not an art major, you can still partake in some of the many classes for non-majors that UIUC has to offer. There are classes that involve sculpture, painting and drawing that are all for non-majors. Take a look at the academic catalog and see what you can find!

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Get out in nature

Sometimes a nice walk outside can get your creative juices flowing. I know being around lots of trees and flowers helps me feel more at peace and thus allows more room for me to be creative. Some places that I’d recommend are the Arboretum/Idea Garden, Meadowbrook Park and the Main and South Quads. While there are definitely more green, peaceful spaces on or near campus, those are some that can get you started. They’re all also accessible by walking or by bus.

Work at The Daily Illini

One of the best decisions I ever made as a designer so far was applying to work at The Daily Illini. It has given me an abundance of experience working with design programs and has allowed me to learn more about being a leader. While the experience is great, it also gave me the opportunity to be surrounded by even more people who helped me learn and encouraged me to make the best work possible.

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