Everything Has It’s Beauty, But Not Everyone Sees It

Every now and then a really good batch of magazines are donated to my class; and this page was made due to one of those instances. A nice, large stack of magazines were just dropped off in my room and I decided to look through them before I added them to my giant, multiple magazine bins. As I was sifting through I suddenly came across a Life magazine, I felt like the heavens opened up and angels were singing.

The magazine was in slightly rough condition, it no longer had a front cover and a few pages were missing, but it still had nice, large graphics to work with. As I was excitedly flipping through I ran across this image and feel in love with it instantly. I was drawn to the image because A: I love the twenties, and it really embodies that style, and B: I am a high school teacher and I feel like this sums up the emotional state of 99.9% of high school girls.

High school is a challenging thing. In addition to school work, pressure from parents, extracurriculars, prepping for college, and part time jobs, you also have to maintain a social life, which isn’t an easy task. There seems to be so many rules and standards just to interact with people. You can wear this, but not that, you can talk to her, but not him, you can say this, but not that. Everything you put on, do, and say is scrutinized. Teenagers are ruthless. I can’t even count the number of times a day I have had to utter the words: “be nice”, but I have to remember I was there once. My teenage angst wasn’t that long ago. I still feel the sting of some comments, ended relationships, and bad choices. But more important I remember my closest friends, inside jokes, good experiences, and important milestones, and these are much fresher in my mind,

I wish I could hit the fast forward button so I could give my students the chance to look back on their high school lives and realize how trivial it really is in the grand scheme of things. It doesn’t matter who said what about you. It doesn’t matter that your hair had a funk wave one day. It doesn’t matter that he liked her instead of you. What does matter is that you had someone to rely on, someone to listen to you, who cared about you for you. Someone who you could hang out with in your pajamas, no make up, and your hair in a half falling out side ponytail. The number of times you laughed so hard you couldn’t breath count more than the number of times you cried. Who cares what status your friends have, what matters is that they love you for you.

Unfortunately I don’t have a giant remote that can control the world… I’m still looking… I guess my students will just have to live through the ups and downs everyone has to live through. I guess it made me a more well rounded person, and hopefully it will do the same for them.

I found this picture before I decided on the page, which required a little more brainstorming once I found it. I knew I wanted to highlight the purples and oranges, so I pulled out some construction paper, ripped it up, and glued it down. It was still too bright compared to the toned down colors in the image, so I painted it with watered down gesso to tone it down (in these early days I’m pretty sure I used gesso in every page). Once I had everything set up I really wanted to find a good quote that highlighted my point. I looked at a number of quote websites until I stumbled onto this, and it fit perfectly. I wanted a curvy, cursivy font, so I typed the quote into a word document and scrolled through the fonts until I found one I liked. I drew it out in pencil first, then traced it in sharpie. [subscribe2]

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