Artist Spotlight: Taylor Foley

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This academic year, SMCM has been privileged to have a very unique visual artist on campus.

First-year Taylor Foley expresses her passion for art with drawings, paintings, and watercolors and includes the Seahawk community in her creative process.

Foley says that while the artwork she creates is done mostly for her own enjoyment, she also sells her work on and off campus, in addition to giving her material out as gifts to other St. Mary’s students. Foley has also made designs for tattoos, as well as artwork for students’ dorm room.

Art has always been a therapeutic outlet for Foley. She became very involved with it two years ago because of her experiences of being bullied in high school.

“Art was my safe place,” said Foley. She reflected that she has always been able to tune everything out whenever she paints or draws.

Though currently busy with theater work, Foley continues to commit time to her artwork, often sketching and drawing the scenery of the campus or creating images of animal life. Foley told The Point News that she does not draw or paint humans, but that she loves to recreate images of animals, such as birds and elephants because of their emotional qualities, recognizing that elephants, her favorite animals, are able to show sympathy and empathy as human beings do. Animals, according to Foley, are also ideal because they do not require the same level of perfection and symmetry demanded in portraits of people.

A distinct characteristic of Foley’s work is, of course, the coloration. She often does not keep her work plain, but embellishes it with vibrant colors, which she believes produce the emotion she sees in a particular image–especially in her work on animals.

Foley began sketching at a very young age, and recounted that she started drawing comics and anime early on. She also took some art classes in school, but had received no formal training until her sophomore year of high school with a ceramics course.

Foley continued her training with watercolor I as a junior. “I fell in love with it,” said Foley.

Foley also took independent study in her senior year of high school, and during that time could paint whatever she wanted, completing 24 out of a required total of seven projects for that year.

Though she’d like to stay at SMCM, Foley plans to transfer to another college or university to pursue her career goals.

Having a love for kids and having taught pre-school over winter break, Foley would like to be a kindergarten teacher and, therefore, wants to major in Education, something that St. Mary’s does not offer as a major. Art therapy is another possible avenue that Foley sees in her future.

You might catch some of Foley’s work this semester. She is waiting to begin painting a mural in Dorchester Hall and will be starting a series of watercolor paintings for her older sister.

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