Digital Media caters to those interested in digital art


The art department’s computer lab has been desolate, only used for concussion tests and is frequently flooded. Other than that, it’s completely abandoned. However, this year a new class called Digital Media has filled the room. 

Digital Media is a class that allows students to use a digital form of art. From graphic design and digital illustration to photography, students are introduced to a whole other world. This was one of many plans art teacher Tyler Fewell had for the art department. 

“When I first came into the art department,” Fewell said, “one of my goals was to sort of reconfigure curriculums to better align with student interests, skills, and knowledge that I felt would better equip them for jobs outside of high school as well as stuff that align with my expertise.”

This class teaches students about different mediums they can use other than just traditional art which is especially beneficial as, nowadays, careers are more based on digital arts. Since most schools don’t have classes or extracurriculars to exercise this medium, many students go into college not knowing how to use these programs. 

“I feel that students could benefit from Digital Media in terms of job opportunities and applicable skills,” Fewell said. “It can be a whole different range from graphic design to Photoshop, to work as a photographer or an illustrator. I would say for anything you learn in Digital Media, these are specifically catered to what you would want to learn to know what to do in a professional sense.”

Being able to use digital arts and traditional arts can be favorable for those students who want to work in the field. This is the case with senior Rachel Douma, an AP art student considering going into art as a profession. Having experience with this medium can be an advantage to her in the field. 

“I decided to take Digital Media because I’ve been interested in digital art for a long time, and when the class was created, I wanted to take it because I have never worked with Photoshop before,” Rachel said. “I tried simpler, more app styles in digital illustration, but I wanted to advance to the more professional medium because I’m debating art as a career.”

Not only is knowledge about digital illustration useful in an art career, but it can also be practical working with the medium. Although learning exactly how to use the medium can prove difficult at first for Rachel, once she learned how to use Photoshop, it was smooth sailing from there. 

“I love the medium,” Rachel said. “It’s honestly one of my favorites now that I’ve tried it and gotten into it. It’s a learning curve, drawing onto the tablet and getting used to looking at the computer, but once you get over not looking at your hand while you draw, I would say it’s nice to have an undo button because in traditional art, you do not have an undo button”

Digital Media is another way to see art as a whole, and having the medium can be a new way to express that and have fun at the same time. Whether it’s drawing digitally or editing photos on Photoshop, Rachel believes anyone can find a way to enjoy a new means of expression through this class.

“This class is definitely a go-to,” Rachel said. “Everyone should take it if they’re looking for more than just the traditional artwork you see in more basic art classes”

This message is echoed by all of those involved in the class. Senior Stella Park also finds use in the Digital Media class. Even though Stella isn’t contemplating whether or not to pursue the fine arts, she finds it handy for those who want to follow a path in the craft. 

“I feel like learning how to use Photoshop is really useful,” Stella said. “If you want to go into design or really anything art related, you’re probably gonna want to use Photoshop.” 

Stella can always learn one thing or another from the class. One of her many hobbies includes taking photos, a hobby Digital Media is related to. Stella has had a passion for photos but taking them and getting them just right has been difficult. In this class, she can polish her talents and understand more about different skills. 

“I liked taking pictures on my phone,” Stella said. “So, I thought why not take photos with actual cameras that are more high quality and learn a bit of technique?”

To have this additional art class within the art department strengthens those who have a passion for the subject, and students can have a head start on valuable knowledge before college.

The computer lab is now full, full of those purely there for fun or those who want to learn about the medium. 

“I think it’s a very valuable experience,” Fewell said, “especially for people that are interested in art and want to pursue it on professional [level]. [Those people] should definitely take this class.”