Painter Walter Price visited students in Jennifer Cross’s Advanced Studio Art course to share information about his career path and creative process. The artist, who was born in Macon, Georgia, recently completed his first-ever solo show, although his bright and eclectic works have been widely displayed throughout New York. Unlike many people who struggle to figure out what occupation they would enjoy, Walter said he had always felt a call to be an artist or creator. He recalled being inspired as a child by a picture that his older brother drew of the characters from the 1990s children’s television show Bananas in Pajamas dressed in baggy urban clothes. Until then, he’d never been aware of work that was rooted in something familiar but informed by an artist’s personal experience. He continues to try and instill that quality in his own work.
Walter says that one of the most important pieces of advice that he could share with young artists is to maintain their creative drive. “I always tell them to never stop having fun with whatever inspires them creatively, whether that’s drawing, painting, or sculpting,” Walter explained. “We’re not encouraged to be creative as adults, so I try to remind students that staying focused on their art and believing in themselves will take them very far in this world.”
For 11th grade student Clover Kim, Walter’s visit was enlightening. “I loved learning more about his work and seeing the hidden messages incorporated into his paintings. Even though the way he views the world is very different from the way I do, I gained a lot of insight from his strong expression.”
Walter is currently engaged in a personal challenge to begin and fill a sketchbook in the course of a day. Although he’s been able to do it before, Walter insists he’s not always successful. Still, he values the practice, which he combines with exploring other media like photography and drawing. “I know that when I go back to painting, [these explorations] will advance the work in ways that I’m not even aware of,” he said.