Design Your Future is the college and career program offered to emerging creatives who work in the Arts on the Block studio. It functions through two ongoing components: the Design Lab, an opportunity to design and animate characters that illustrate the emerging creative experience and working with Artist Advocates, professional mentors that foster creative careers.
Once a week in a design workshop, the DYF cohort brings to life characters who are on their way to becoming working artists – in whatever capacity that might present itself. Whether they are a freelance graphic designer, architect, painter, or a full-time mosaicist, our cohort will build fully-animated profiles for these characters using storyboarding, cartooning and creative writing to bring their professional aspirations (and concerns) to life. Their stories will be organized and posted to the AOB website, so that other young artists are inspired to achieve their creative goals.
An Artist Advocate is an empowering, knowledgeable, resourceful, adult volunteer who serves as a support and trusted confidante to the emerging artists in the DYF cohort. Advocates help to focus on important academic, professional and life skills; make connections to opportunities and resources; listen and reflect on positive professional and educational choices, and builds/follows through with immediate and longer term goals and plans.
Emerging Creatives and Artist Advocates meet once a month for a studio social and individually as needed to work on their plans and projects.
Both of these components works towards connecting emerging creatives to the people and resources necessary to achieve college and career goals. The program, as a whole, acknowledges and celebrates the many valid paths that creative people follow and the unique projects we endeavor on. Check in on the characters’ profiles as they are posted, and get inspired by the characters and stories from our current DYF cohort!
If you’re interested in becoming an Artist Advocate, learn more here.