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Artist Statement – Paige Allen, cover artist

    I’ve been an artist for, essentially, as long as I can remember. From the time I was old enough to hold a crayon, my coloring books would accompany me everywhere, soon evolving to many-paged lined notebooks and eventually becoming true to form sketchbooks. Throughout my life, I’ve been able to further ground myself in this love of creativity, picking up new hobbies, mediums, and art forms as often as I could. Art was- and still largely is- my passion, a drive to see the beauty in a world that so frequently keeps it hidden. 

    Despite how important art has been to my life overall, when I first enrolled at UM-Dearborn, I did not expect art to take any major role in my experience here. I’m a psychology major, and I expected that path to dominate my course loads, time, and attention- and, in some ways, it did. However, my first semester here, fully online, I took a beginning painting course with Professor Kevin Castille, aiming to simply fulfill a “Gen Ed” credit with something I figured I would enjoy. I didn’t know it then, but taking that course would open the door for me to become deeper and deeper involved in the flourishing creative arts community present here at UMD. Over the past four years, I’ve had the privilege of taking many fantastic classes and meeting so many wonderful folks throughout the art department, both faculty and students alike. I’ve also had the opportunity to participate in several art exhibitions and events, all of which have further fostered my love of creation, pushing me to try new things and explore different avenues than I may have otherwise. Given these experiences, both lifelong and more recent, the cover piece I’ve created for Volume 5 is meant to reflect both my passion for art/creativity and the gratefulness I have for the supportive artistic community I’ve found at UMD, working to incorporate my own art style and creative perspectives into several mementos meant to represent different pieces of the university environment I’ve come to love so much. 

    Paige’s cover art:

    Volume 5 cover art