Roman Kalaczinski relies on art to keep him on his toes


Everyone copes with stress in different ways. Especially with the start of the new school year and the new adaptations COVID-19 has forced upon us, stress levels are abruptly rising after the six month long summer. Some may stress eat, meditate, or sleep, but for junior Roman Kalaczinski, his coping mechanism lies within art.

Art has always been a constant for Roman. From elementary school to high school, he has been enrolled in an art class. Drawing and painting give him comfort and joy, and, in a way, halts his crazy life. Additionally, Roman is on the rowing team and boys swim and dive team. Plus, he is Vice President of the FHC Student Council Board. So, when he’s given a split second of relaxation, he knows exactly where his happy place is.

“I guess I’ve just always liked art,” Roman said. “It’s always been an outlet for me. When I’m feeling stressed out, I just resort to either drawing or painting in order to feel better. Or when I’m bored, I draw or paint; it’s honestly just a really good hobby of mine. It helps me stay on my toes and be creative mentally.”

Roman describes art as “therapeutic.” Meaning that art is like therapy to him, and it never fails to relax him or boost his mood. With Roman jumping into his junior year—the toughest year of school—he knows he will have to rely on art a lot this upcoming school year.  

“[Art] is just a huge stress reliever for me,” Roman said. “Other people have different outlets, but for me, I always go back to art. I have so much fun with it, and honestly, it’s great to show off a little.”

Roman thankfully gets to showcase his talent within his schedule this year. He was initially enrolled in Spanish 3 but did some reconsidering over the summer when he had a slight reality check.

“I was originally supposed to do Spanish 3,” Roman said. “But then, over the summer, I was like “What am I doing? I hate Spanish,” so, instead, I replaced my Spanish class with AP Studio Art.”

AP Studio Art is more complicated than it sounds; it is one big class that is divided into three portfolio ideas. You can either do a drawing and painting portfolio, a 2D portfolio, or a 3D portfolio. Roman’s decision for his portfolio of choice was simple.

“In the past I’ve taken Drawing/Painting 1 and 2, so, of course, I will be doing a drawing and  painting portfolio,” Roman said. “Basically, it means that I’m creating fifteen pieces that all center around one specific topic.”

As seen, Roman’s true calling and talent lies in drawing. Although he is advanced at almost all kinds of artistry, drawing is where his heart’s at.

“I do more drawing than other things,” Roman said. “It just makes me feel like I have more control over what I’m doing, and I like that.”

Roman has various goals in regards to exceeding with his talent. In the past, he’s been extremely proud of his achievements, and because of that, he’s determined to one up himself every year to come. 

“I really want to get a 5 on the AP exam,” Roman said. “I also want to get a gold key at the Scholastic Art and Writing Competition because last year I got an honorable mention; I want to do better this year.”

With Roman’s mountain of talent, a major in artistry would be expected for his future; however, he portrays art as more of a hobby and something he enjoys. Rather, he thinks that if he truly attempts a career within art, it will deteriorate his love for it.

“I am not sure if I’ll ever pursue a career in art,” Roman said. “I find it enjoyable and fun, but I have a feeling majoring in it could somehow ruin it for me. I’d rather just draw to please myself rather than others.”

Roman has learned that art has more to do with it than just sketching designs. It has taught Roman various things that apply to not just his skills within art, but also life.

“Patience—I’ve learned patience,” Roman said. “You can’t rush art. It’s something that should be forever enjoyed.”