(By: Andrea Josic)
A showcase filled with art by Ryerson’s Creative Industries students was more than a display of a hobby outside of their program. It was a display of human emotional expression.
Creative Industries is a program for students who want to pursue an entrepreneurial career in the business side of media, entertainment, design or visual arts. The program is lecture-heavy and there is very little hands-on work done.
The Creative Industries showcase has been running for only two years and was created specifically as an outlet for the talent of students in the program.
Sofiya Yusypovych, a second-year student and the VP of Events in the Creative Industries course union, helped organize the first showcase in 2016. The first showcase was organized two weeks before the event by the current President Fiona Kenney to let students have the chance to show off the work they do outside of school.
“The people who are here tonight are in an intense program that takes up a lot of time and energy,” says Yusypovych. “But they still manage to create pieces that are mind-blowing. I think it’s all a matter of motivation and inspiration. Take inspiration from anything that’s around you.”
The artwork consisted of written work, fashion pieces, paintings, photography, printed posters and live performances. Alongside each piece was a description where the artist describes how their emotions channel their creativity.
Fourth-year student Emily Betteridge used a curtain to cover her love poems, symbolizing that although there is a barrier she puts up in front of her feelings, love has her full focus when she faces it.
“Sharing my poetry is something that made me feel really vulnerable, and I didn’t think I was ready for it,” says Betteridge, who has never had her work showcased before. “I use poetry in the best way that suits me. I’m glad I’m in a less artistic program because I don’t want to feel forced to write.”
Like Betteridge, third-year student Nicole Ireland chose Creative Industries because she wants to work in the business side of arts industries, but showcased her art because she’s proud of her self-expression. Simple haikus accompanied by photographs is Nicole’s way of using art to “say it how it is”.
“I’ve never had to write a poem for a school project, or take a bunch of photographs,” says Ireland. “It’s not a common thing for us. That’s why I love this so much.”
Other Creative Industries students have heavy passions for art and use the showcase as another way to share their work. First-year student Vicky Wang has always been musically inclined but has been song-writing since earlier this school year and is working towards producing music this summer.
“I feel like I withheld from singing and song-writing for too long throughout high school and I regret that,” admits Wang. “But I know I had to go through that to realize that this is what I want to do. So that is what I’ll be pursuing.”
Vicky Wang goes by earlybird and has an original song out on her Soundcloud account.
The Creative Industries showcase happens every year towards the end of the second semester. The Creative Industries course union is lenient on submissions because they want to praise creativity and provide an equal opportunity for each student to share a piece of themselves.
With varying levels of passion, each students is unique in their motivation behind creating art. But when they were asked to give words of inspiration to any student who might be afraid to express themselves creatively, each Creative Industries student said the same thing.
“Just go for it.”