Jon Oliphant

The journey began in prep school where I only drew for the fun of drawing. Art seemed farfetched and not realistic at such a age. Like my other peer group members I had the dream to become a doctor and medical was the only seemingly right one to become. I went on to Secondary School, and there at deCarteret College my curiosity in the arts developed.

My experience in Pathfinders Club, at Easter and summer camp and vacation Bible school proved that my talents far outdid the others, so I graduated myself to all adult art and craft activities. My mother had exposed me to the creative crafts at most camps, where I became Instructor's Assistant and the idea man. My father who is a lithographic printer had always given me tips on graphic imaging, but those tips went through the other ear.

On completion of Secondary school, I immediately went on to Mico Teachers’ College after being turned down by Edna Manley College. There I majored in Secondary Visual Arts Education. Given my prior exposure to other aspects of Visual Arts I realised there was much to learn. The three years developed and exposed my talents, each day the process was worth the Experience.

Gaining knowledge in various areas of the visual arts, such as ceramics, textile design and layout, painting, drawing and weaving among others was necessary to equip a teacher for life experiences. I taught visual arts and resource and technology for three years before moving on for further studies at the University of the West Indies (Mona) and the Edna Manley College of Visual arts to pursue a B.A. in Visual Arts.

In the process I learned new art forms which included color and black and white photography, serigraphy, digital imagery and concepts to improve my limited drawing and painting experience. I acknowledge that my photography and serigraphy skills are more popular than my other skills. These have earned me first place silver medals and merit certificates in the JCDC National Visual Arts Competitions and added popularity on campus.

I thank God for those years and for a motivating mother and family who pushed me into choosing my career path. I intend to now go and produce more exciting pieces of art and hope that through my influence someone out there will be motivated to use his or her talents to inspire others. I really try to inspire and hope that my profession will help students look into their society and see what they can become and how they can influence their peers through the talents given to them.

Art is not only what we see it is what we do from the heart that reflects our heartfelt feelings to issues and social commentaries in our lives. My appreciation for the visual arts is based on a passion to positively influence others. I will make an effort to become the light of difference. (Content contributed by Jon Oliphant 2008)