During this last week of Artist Conversations, I had the pleasure to interview Makaila Palmer about her artwork. In the Gatov Gallery, she had a total of three paintings in her show to represent the stages of her life as a child transforming into ending her college career. She considers her style of artwork as psychological landscapes using oil on canvas. All of her pieces contains a figure within the painting and it is on a path of figuring out who you are. Makaila uses high contrasting colors to represent the moods and feelings associated with that stage in life. She quotes, “There’s a path but you don’t know what you’re going to do yet.” This is articulated through her works displayed at the Gatov Gallery. On display, she had her Dusk, Day, and Dawn pieces; however, her midnight piece is still in the works. Her inspiration for this kind of art came about through her study abroad program in Florence where she studied Michaelangelo. She tried to emulate him by mixing landscapes with a figure. Beginning this showcase, she did not know if this was the direction she wanted to head in, however a professor gave her the motivation and confidence to translate her feelings into these pieces of art.
Throughout my conversation with Makaila, I couldn’t help but sympathize with her in her college career journey. She admitted that graduating did take a little longer than expected but she finally made it. It’s not just about the journey to the end, but the all of the things in-between that you learn and see throughout the process. It’s all of the careful choices one makes in life to help guide you to your finish line. By examining her life, she can realize that at one point, she had no clue where her life was going, but then with hard work, she was able to conquer it and finish her BFA.
I can sympathize with Makaila here because my own journey through school has been atypical to say the least. I first went to UNM in 2006 as a pre pharmacy major. I took all of my pre requisite classes but did not do as well as needed to so I then changed majors to nursing. That didn’t work out either so I took a break from school to work. Knowing that I needed to eventually finish school no matter what, I then re-enrolled in school and this is my final week of my undergraduate career. The journey has been bumpy and atypical, but I persevered and made it. Relating to Makaila, her journey in her college career took a little longer than expected, however she learned valuable lessons along the way that has allowed her to reach her end goal and enjoy.
You can reach Makaila Palmer through her website or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.