For DonorsFor Applicants
user profile avatar

Aaron Mitchell

2465

Bold Points

5x

Nominee

1x

Finalist

1x

Winner

Bio

I am a college sophomore currently majoring in Art at Georgia State University. I have a passion for drawing, painting, and multimedia design. I recently transferred from Georgia Tech after studying Computer Science for nearly two years. After doing plenty of soul-searching and self-reflection, I realized that I couldn't continue to ignore my dreams. A generous scholarship would help me achieve my dream of becoming a professional artist, which has never been done in my family!

Education

Georgia State University

Bachelor's degree program
2021 - 2023
  • Majors:
    • Fine/Studio Arts, General
  • GPA:
    3.6

Miscellaneous

  • Desired degree level:

    Bachelor's degree program

  • Graduate schools of interest:

  • Transfer schools of interest:

  • Majors of interest:

    • Visual and Performing Arts, General
  • Not planning to go to medical school
  • Test scores:

    • 1460
      SAT

    Career

    • Dream career field:

      Arts

    • Dream career goals:

      Art Director

    • Product Intern

      CallRail
      2018 – 2018
    • Founder and Lead Designer

      WORK WEAR
      2019 – Present5 years

    Arts

    • Office of International Initiatives

      Graphic Design
      2021 – Present
    • HackGT

      Graphic Art
      HackGT 7, Horizons
      2019 – 2020
    • North Avenue Review

      Visual Arts
      Special Quaran-"zine" Issue, Fall 2020 Double Issue
      2020 – 2020

    Public services

    • Volunteering

      Yoyo Ferro — Assistant Painter
      2018 – Present

    Future Interests

    Advocacy

    Politics

    Volunteering

    Philanthropy

    Entrepreneurship

    Terry Crews "Creative Courage" Scholarship
    This piece represents the culmination of years of study, both artistic and scientific. For many years, I have practiced drawing human figures, which coincides with my scientific interest in human anatomy and physiology. Inspired by Science-Fiction movies such as Ghost In The Shell, Minority Report, and Face/Off, I seek to create illustrations that depict the fraught relationship between humanity and technology. In this piece, one half of a human body and one half of an android body stand next to each other in a containment unit with only a set of bionic clamps holding them together. The clamps symbolize the currently tenuous relationship between humans and technology—unlike Sci-Fi movies, we have yet to unify human bodies and intellect with our robotic counterparts. Whether that unification is desirable is a question I hope to evoke in the minds of my audience.
    Bold Passion Scholarship
    Representation matters. While this statement seems clichéd, I believe it bears repeating because representation matters even more than some might think it does. Recently, I watched a show on HBO Max called ‘Sort Of’, a series that follows the story of Sabi Mehboob, a nanny whose nonbinary identity influences most of the problems they face. Before watching this show, I had never heard of a “nonbinary” person and never thought about the implications of that identity. In the show, many of Sabi’s friends and their sister are supportive of their identity, but their extended family and others outside of their circle are either skeptical of or downright disgusted by who Sabi is. In one episode, Sabi’s sister asks them to “de-femme” before their cousins come over to help their mother move some boxes, fearing the disapproval and ire of their extended family. Despite typically obeying the request, Sabi decides against it and shows up downstairs in front of their cousin and uncle dressed in feminine clothes that betray the idea of what someone born male should wear. As expected, the cousin and uncle appear disgusted and angry, which prompts Sabi to feel ashamed and disavowed. As a straight Black man, I relate to the feeling of being an outcast, but I know I can always count on my family to love me unconditionally. Unfortunately, nonbinary people often can’t expect the same love and support from their blood relatives and face higher rates of homelessness and harassment. I might not know any nonbinary people personally, but ‘Sort Of’ inspired me to educate myself and stand up for LGBTQ+ people wherever I am. Without shows like ‘Sort Of’, our capacity for empathy and change is diminished while we all suffer. As Dr. King said, “injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”
    Bold Art Scholarship
    When someone runs away from home at 15 years old, most people probably don’t expect much from them. As harsh as that sounds, it’s exactly the kind of reaction that makes Basquiat’s success so remarkable. When a runaway befriends and works extensively with their artistic idol, they have achieved a level of success greater than most people imagine for themselves, runaway or not. After leaving home at 15, police officers arrested Basquiat and eventually sent him to the care of his father. Afterward, he attended City-As-School, an alternative high school in Manhattan that served as a hub for young artists. One of his classmates, Al Diaz, began collaborating with him on a graffiti project called SAMO, which started Basquiat’s meteoric rise in the art world. After only a year and a half of selling work in galleries, Basquiat met Andy Warhol, one of his artistic idols, in a lunch meeting set up by art critic Bruno Bischofberger. Brimming with excitement after meeting one of his heroes, Basquiat returned to his studio, did a frantic sketch of the both of them, and tasked an assistant with finishing the painting and sending it over to Warhol’s studio in under two hours. The painting the assistant sent, ‘Dos Cabezas’, marked the beginning of a storied relationship between Basquiat and Warhol, two art rebels from different eras. The part of ‘Dos Cabezas’ that inspires me the most is the passion and excitement that brought it to life. Working with an inspiration of yours is a big deal already, but being able to express your excitement fluently through art is an even bigger deal. His ability to imbue a painting with such profound feelings is what made his work so unique and, I suspect, it’s what made Warhol so interested in working with him.
    Bold Best Skills Scholarship
    My best skill is digital painting. To improve my painting skill, I do one value study every day, a color study every week, a contour line study every week, and bigger projects on a long-term basis. For each value study, I choose a picture of a sculpture from a public board on Pinterest and spend an hour doing my best to recreate the values—the range from pure white to pure black— from scratch. This might sound simple, but it’s quite challenging since I constantly have to check the proportions of my sketch, make sure I understand the direction and intensity of the light in the scene and make the values as deep as they need to be. Similarly, color studies require me to copy an image, but instead of values, I mimic colors and shapes. Color studies are essentially more difficult value studies since you have to interpret the color as value and determine how to reach the target color in the part of the image you are recreating. As a break from the intense color and value studies, I do contour line studies where I find other images to study from and draw contour and cross-contour lines that force me to understand the volume of a particular subject in under an hour. To apply all the lessons I learn from the value, color, and contour line studies I do, I work on long-term projects such as portrait paintings and multimedia website design. I often choose a subject or idea I am interested in (e.g. music, fashion) and base a project on that. Right now, I am creating a website based on Kanye West’s Yeezy brand of shoes. It will feature 3D models of each shoe, original paintings, and text that provides biographical information for Yeezy and its products.
    Bold Longevity Scholarship
    I think the best way to live a long, healthy life is to live the life you want. This might sound like too simple an answer to a complex question, but I think simplicity is necessary. Most conventional wisdom such as eating well, challenging your mind, and building a strong social network is a natural result of following my advice. In my personal experience, my physical and mental health have improved the most when I found sustainable ways of dealing with my fears and insecurities through action, not daydreaming. A year ago, I felt quite unhealthy, unhappy, and unmotivated. It was only until I started living the healthier version of my life I wanted that I started feeling better. To address feeling unhealthy, I started exercising three times a week. To address feeling unhappy, I started developing hobbies and hanging out with my friends on the weekends. To address feeling unmotivated, I created a plan to transfer schools and begin studying art, a subject I enjoy more than computer science, my first choice of study. In each situation, my life improved drastically when I started living the life I wanted rather than the life I accepted. Every person’s thoughts, attitudes, and circumstances will make following my advice difficult in unique ways, but everyone can act. If you are not addressing your problems, you are accepting them and their negative effects. Any action taken against your fears works towards building a longer, healthier life that will secure more of what you want. Take small steps towards greatness and you will eventually make it there.
    Deborah's Grace Scholarship
    For many people, high school is a mostly positive experience where they learn about themselves, challenge themselves, and share good experiences with friends of theirs while also facing obligatory exams and drama. For many others like myself, high school isn’t just bad, it’s almost traumatic. I don’t mean to sound melodramatic—there are plenty of teenagers that faced famine, war, and other serious issues while I simply had a bad experience in a safe, stable environment. I acknowledge how I might sound, but I would like to share my experience nonetheless. In my high school experience, I faced a unique kind of bullying based on a lack of interference rather than too much. In other words, people mostly ignored me, my feelings, and my interests in pursuit of who and what was popular. As a young Black man who defies the stereotype of being athletic, simple-minded, and inoffensive, socializing became increasingly difficult each year. Racial jokes were common and cliques formed easily. When my “best friends” started planning social events that excluded me right in front of my face, I knew I needed to change schools. As a rising 10th grader, transferring to another school proved to be near impossible. I tried several times to apply to a nearby high school, but after being waitlisted twice, I realized I would have to get creative. To achieve my goal of transferring before 10th grade, I created a list of schools I wanted to attend and began scheduling visits with each of them. I initially planned to interview with about six schools, but my mom suggested a school that seemed almost too perfect to be real. With a nontraditional approach to classes, this school allowed students to take entrepreneurship classes, made it a requirement to find an internship, and—as is often requested—actually taught us how to do taxes and handle adult responsibilities. After a successful interview, not only did I achieve my goal of transferring, but I also found a more fitting community that eventually helped me become a more confident and capable young man. Despite the troubles I faced in high school, I learned some valuable lessons that made me more resilient. In my experience as a transfer student, I recognized the importance of planning and trusting my instincts. As I became more comfortable in my skin, I learned how important taking care of yourself is in establishing long-term success. In my opinion, becoming the kind of friend you want to meet allows you to build better friendships and enjoy life more. In the future, the self-confidence and kindness I developed after high school will open doors to new, unforeseen opportunities. As a bold, inventive young artist, I will forge relationships will reputable artists, managers, and other industry leaders who will support my career and help me build a future of success and fulfillment. High school might not have been a great time for me, but it taught me to enjoy what’s next.
    Bold Growth Mindset Scholarship
    Winner
    To maintain a growth mindset, I created a system that helps me deal with the feelings of insecurity and defensiveness that inhibit growth. For example, I often feel bad about my artwork, which makes addressing the problems I face more difficult because it can be painful. To deal with the insecurity of my artistic self-image, I reframe the problem. Instead of focusing on how bad I feel in the moment, I turn my attention to how good I will feel tomorrow knowing that my art is objectively better because I practiced intentionally. As a result, I work harder in pursuit of that warm, rewarding feeling of satisfaction. To maintain growth in the face of inevitable fluctuations in motivation, drive, and interest, I structure the time I spend working based on a work-reward feedback loop. Each time I work, I alternate between working for 45 minutes and spending 15 minutes relaxing. This way, I avoid burnout and make it clear when I will be rewarded for my work. Additionally, I make sure to write out detailed goals and specific, actionable means of achieving them before I start working. This way, I know exactly what I’m doing and why. With this system, I have drastically improved my art skills, won scholarships, and improved my physical and mental health in the past year. I hope this advice helps others face their insecurities and continue to grow.
    Bold Patience Matters Scholarship
    Being patient is important to me because it always worked when I needed it to. A year ago, I felt miserable at the technical college I attended. I became a liberal arts major at that school because I realized technical work was not my passion, but that still did not bring me happiness. If I were impatient, I would have given in to the temptation of dropping out, which would have removed me from my friends, my scholarships, and my best chance at long-term success. Conversely, I used that winter break to draft a plan to transfer to another school and pivot towards a new career. Now, I am studying art at another school and have not lost my community, my scholarships, or a guaranteed shot at success and financial stability. When I created my transfer plan last year, I knew I wanted to pursue art but I knew my skills needed to improve before I entered my school of choice. If I were impatient, I would have listened to my insecure mind and given up on art because both admitting I’m not good and doing something about were daunting tasks. However, I remained patient and took two semesters off to do online art classes that have made my first semester as an art student significantly easier. I am a more confident, ambitious artist who learned the art of discipline that is so important in a school environment. In other words, I decided to chase my dreams and change my life instead of losing patience and losing out on a promising future.