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Utah's Foremost Platform for Undergraduate Research Presentation
2020 Abstracts

Traveling Through Conversations and Experiencing Through Painting

Harris, Anna (Brigham Young University)

Faculty Advisor: Graham, Mark (Brigham Young University, Art Department)

I am a scholar, a future educator, and Utah woman exploring how to create a better future classroom. This last summer, I studied a person’s influence on people and their relationship to the environment through traveling, painting, and talking to people in Scotland and the Faroe Islands. Through observation and communicating with local dwellers and other travelers, I learned more about the individual impact people have as well as the societal impact that can change landscapes. In the paintings: “Shetland Morning” and “Hillside Climbs”, I illustrated some of the subtle changes that we have made on otherwise natural landscapes giving both positive and negative impressions that we, as a whole, are leaving on the world. Traveling Scotland allowed me to have conversation after conversation with people of different socioeconomic status, different levels of learning, and in different stages of life. It taught me that I, a Utah Woman and teacher in the making, can make a difference.

While traveling, I stole moments to sit and look. Painting is more than just allowing color to stain a page, it is observation and breathing in each moment: the air was salty with scents of the ocean; the wind whipped and the colors bloomed over the somber landscapes. In almost every painting, there is evidence of humanities touch. Unintentionally, people had left marks altering the otherwise all-natural landscapes.

As a future teacher, my students will know that they hold potential. They have the power to leave impressions through conversation with others and earth itself. I am a Utah Woman who has researched, who has experienced, and who has traveled. I have painted and listened. I have observed as well as talked. I can build a classroom that can build a better tomorrow.