April 01, 2017

By Morgan Richardson ’17

Everyone doodles a few times in their lives, but it was always something more to me. It started with comic books and Saturday morning cartoons. Sure, kids are supposed to love those things, but I had an extreme fascination with them. I tried drawing those characters, and traced thousands of them for practice, but I never could get it right the first, second or even third time.

Morgan Richardson ’17

For years, I thought drawing was a lost cause for me. Yet it never stopped me from surrounding myself with art. I befriended a lot of artistic people, and I continued watching cartoons when everyone else started branching off to other channels. I admired comic book artists and animators from afar, and I doodled on almost every assignment I ever had. I bought sketchbooks and art supplies that I thought experts would use (as if that were the secret behind their work.)

Every journal or diary that I ever owned had at least two attempts at drawing something or a page full of small sketches. Admittedly, the desire to create art was always there. I just kept it to myself, thinking I couldn’t possibly be like those talented people who seemed to draw with ease. I just kept my head down and my grades up, and focused on my first love, creative writing.

I always thought my sole calling was writing. I was so in tune with it, I went out of my way to look for an excellent creative writing program, which led me to Susquehanna. I thought that was exactly what I wanted to do, but it was never quite enough. The gnawing desire to express myself in not only words, but also images, continued to grow. My confidence just needed to catch up with that growing desire.

Self-conscious about my artistic skill level, or lack thereof, I never even took an art class in high school. I was too nervous, worried about what other students would think of me. What I didn’t know at the time was that drawing is a skill, not a natural talent. It can be learned and improved upon.