by Christina Clark
Senior Kaitlyn Raway’s has moved from simple projects to earning a degree in graphic design with a minor in printmaking, but the initial flame for art that began with elementary school crafts is still burning brightly.
“Back in high school you’d meet a counselor and they’d say, ‘you like this and this, maybe you could try this out.’ I really like math and art, so they recommended graphic design and I looked more into it as I was transitioning here because I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do,” Raway explains.
After coming from Wisconsin and attending IUPUI initially and then Ivy Tech, Raway found her way to IU South Bend and into the graphic design program, where she started pursuing a BA in Fine Arts.
Landing in graphic design has married multiple interests and needs for Raway, who also cites that aside from it being a “marketable position,” that it is also a way she can help others with her art. And while the deciding factor for Raway was the ability to work with and for others, that doesn’t keep her from creating artwork for her own enjoyment.
Aside from taking an oil painting class over the fall semester that she “fell in love with,” she also has pursued a printmaking minor.
“I like to get my hands in and work with materials,” she says. “There’s a long process to [printmaking], it isn’t just digital work and drawing by hand and transferring it to digital. You really are working with the materials all the way through. Sometimes they react differently than you want and make something different than you intended, but it’s still good. It’s not the original plan: it helps me not get stuck on my first idea because it doesn’t always turn out the way I wanted.”
As Raway describes the process for Intaglio (printmaking), with the copper plates and the engraving, etching, using acid and working through the process, her passion for the process shines through. She describes the technique and the uniqueness to each print, yet how it is also reproduceable. She talks about how it is special to work in the process where one has seemingly so much control, but still can be surprised with certain challenges and reactions, and how it speaks to the physical act of putting her logical and artistic sides together in a tactile way, bringing a tangible work of art into being using a similar set of mental and creative tools that she uses to create digital art.
She’d like to find a graphic design job before graduating, but doesn’t have anywhere in particular in mind just yet. If she has her way about it, she will stay in the South Bend area.
“I’m part of a Christian community, and there’s a group of them [in South Bend] as well. I want to stay local. I’m not from here originally, but I’m calling it home for now,” Raway says.