I want to start off with something witty and inspirational, but you guys know that's not me so much. What you do know is that I will always be your biggest fan, and that I'll always love you unconditionally no matter how badly you screw up, right Ekta? LOL This is Ekta above on the potter's wheel where she created some of the most beautiful pots and sculptures that have ever come out of Whitney High. I'm gonna miss so many things about you guys. Your grumpiness in the mornings as you are trying to wake up along with your many tardies as you race thru Cerritos trying to get to my 2nd period on time. I did appreciate the hustle as you guys came running thru my door to try to beat me as I started taking roll, or as you tried to sneak by me hoping I wouldn't notice you coming in late, right Heidi :)
I will especially miss the crazy creativity of you two girls (Anne Guu above and Ashlee Chang below). On every single assignment you two always gave me way more then I asked for, coming up with clever ideas that I will steal from you and incorporate into the assignments next year. Thanks you two for your constant inspiration, your positive and loving attitudes, your respect and attentiveness, your kindness, and all the extra effort both of you gave me all year long. I will think of you often so stay in touch!
And Hannah Park, I'm so looking forward to you figuring out what you want to do with your life. I just pray that it's something connected with art and that you transfer to a wonderful art school where you will be appreciated for your creative sensitivity, your sweet heart and gentle smile. Wayne Chen and Steven Ebalobor, you two were my gift from God, always so pleasant and helpful, as seen below as you help me to unload numerous kilns. Both of you are such gentlemen, I hope your girlfriends appreciate and know what a good deal they have with you. I hope you both continue with the arts cuz both of you are crazy talented designers and craftsmen.
And then there is Trisha Shah, above, who I could always count on to finish and nail every assignment. You made so many exceptional pieces this year. And you always got what I was after with each assignment. You have been such a pleasure to work with. And Marisela Herrarte, below, I have known and worked with you since the 7th grade and still can't pronounce your name correctly and you've never held it against me. Thank you for your understanding, but even more what I especially loved about you was your critical thinking skills. You have always thought outside the box, you continually question and come up with new, fresh ways to interpret my assignments. I so appreciate and envy the way your mind works. I can't wait to see where it takes you. Please keep me posted!
Jenny Dai and Sherri Singh, where have you two been all these years? You should have been with me in the art room cuz you two are such creative thinkers and impeccable craftswomen. I adored getting to know and work with you both this year. I especially appreciated how attentive and encouraging you both were every time I presented a new unit. I always knew I could look to either of you as I was talking and being goofy and get a smile.
Mary Lou Bunn, whatever would I have done without you as my 5th period T.A. You assisted and helped me in so many ways, it was so nice knowing you were there for me and with such a positive attitude. And I loved watching you enjoy working on your art pieces in 2nd period. It's so nice to see a student who enjoys the whole process as much as you did especially that early in the morning :) You have worked hard for me in both classes and I'm so grateful for all your help. Brandon Liao, you come from a family of artists, you and your 2 sisters have been some of the strongest students in both 2 and 3-d art that I've had here at Whitney. I'm so proud of you for working so hard on your own, taking all those extra art courses and getting accepted into Art Center in Pasadena. I know you will do great things there. Good Luck to you.
Sweet, gentle Esther Lee, you work so slowly and carefully, and produce such beautiful, sensitive pieces. I was so glad to see you push yourself in your self portrait. It was by far the most important work you produced this year. I feel you will go on to produce many powerful pieces in your art career. Just believe in yourself, I do!
Audrey Pulido, wow, three years together and look at the body of work you have produced, and also the numerous pieces that you do on your own time. You are a fabulous designer and a hard worker, and I know you will go far in your fashion career. Hopefully you will be able to use much of what you learned in the 3-d classes to help you on your journey. And Kate Lee, how I enjoyed having you back with me after 5 long years. I remember you as a determined and hard working 7th grader, and you continued to impress me this year with your goodness, your sense of right and wrong, your respect and attentiveness, your strong sense of responsibility, your kindness and wonderful heart. And what impresses me the most about you is your mental strength, you are such a strong minded woman who knows how to go after things that matter to you and others. You will go far in your lifetime to do great things. And you have contributed greatly at Whitney High. Thank you!
Quiet, gentle and shy but with a determination to achieve and do your best, that's how I see you Sam Chon. It was so interesting to me to watch your working style which is so different from my own, you work a little, daze off into the distance a little, take a bathroom break or two, work a little, daze a little more. But you always come through on each assignment, don't know how you do it but your work always gets done, and it's usually pretty damn good too :) Thanks for hanging in there with me till the bitter end! And Shabnaz Klondoker, I think one of the youngest seniors we've ever had, you are such a gifted artist and have produced so many beautiful works for me over the last 2 years at such a young age, WOW, you are really something. Your works were oftentimes late but always worth the wait. I can't even imagine what you will create as you get older. I so hope you will be continuing on in the arts.
And one of the sweetest, most respectful and kindhearted young men, Robert Dohring, how I will miss seeing whether you make it to my class everyday. I totally get how that was out of your control, in your heart, I knew you wanted to be there and on time :) I will so miss your charming smile, and the way you would always tell me "Yeah, yeah, yeah, don't worry Ms. Agrums, I'll get it done" when I was bugging you to finish your work on time. You are such a smart young man, I can't wait to see what happens with your life when you finally decide to apply yourself. Go for it for me, will ya?
And just look at my boys in 5th period ceramics working so hard to get their glazing done so they can sit around the rest of the period and play on their phones and cameras, or just sit around and use some of the foulest language I've ever heard with their pants hanging halfway down to their knees. Seriously, I enjoyed you guys so very much, you constantly made me laugh, and you really did bust your butts for me on most all the assignments. I know it was hard at the end to not just throw those bird feeders together as fast as you could, who the hell would care anyways, certainly not the birds! Justin Currlin, starting on the far left, you are crazy amazing, and have been featured so many times on my blog for your exceptional designs. Kyoung Lee, photographer extraordinaire, who am I gonna embarrass and bug once you are gone? I know you know you were one of my favorites this year, and I know you didn't want to be, too bad. You are in my heart forever and I hope you keep in touch, cuz I will miss you. Brian Jin, wannabe gangster, you are smart and witty, go make some nicer friends and turn your life around would ya? You have so many important things to do in your lifetime, so much to give back, plus you are a damn good designer too! Maybe go do something with that! It's a start and certainly better then what you are currently doing with your free time. And Chris Shishido, you are one of our brightest young mind's this year, plus a hell of a nice person too. I see for you a bright political future. Please remember the arts as you pass new legislation in Washington, we need funding desperately.
Julliann Kho, one of the most gifted designers I've ever worked with, I'm sure goona miss your sweet smile in the mornings. I'll always have that letter you wrote to me as a young 7th grader, telling me how much you loved my class. I hope you continued to love my class as a senior. I know you went through a lot of changes and challenges this year, and I also realize how hard you worked the last couple of months trying your best to do what you needed to. I love that you came thru on that last asssignment, so proud of you for finishing up on a positive note. Life is so hard sometimes, there are going to be a few set backs Julliann, but what defines you is how you handle them, learn from them and then grow stronger. And what I saw from you at the end is that you can be a very strong woman when you need to be. You will be in my heart forever. I love you so much, good luck to you. I will think of you often. And here you are again Kyoung Lee, almost getting a smile out of you :) Damn, I'm gonna really miss you in the mornings, trying to get a hello or a good morning out of you. Trying to push you harder then you want to be pushed so you can grow as an artist. You are one stubborn customer, but I enjoyed every minute of it. Thank you for sharing your photography with me. I'm dying to know what you are going to do with your life, so I really hope you keep in touch, cuz know that I will be thinking of you.
And you Christopher Lee, hating all that girly stuff in the 3-d class, like sewing and weaving. Hey, at least you will know how to sew on a button when you get to college, right? Getting you to stay on task in both the classes you took with me was one of my greatest challenges this year. Man, do you love to talk! But it was so hard for me to stay mad at you cuz you have such a sweet disposition, plus you had some good design skills when you really tried. It was really wonderful watching you turn your life around this year, choosing the right path and pulling yourself off the wrong one. I'm so proud of you Chris, and so happy to see how much happier you are. Let me know how it goes in college, I sincerely hope that you will start applying yourself, cuz you are a smart young man and that will take you far in life. Good Luck! Alma Gudino, I thought I had a pix of you and I guess I didn't get one. Leader of the mushroom girls, it was such a pleasure working with you. I think you are wonderful, talented, creative, smart, responsible, hard working, you get the idea. Loved having your energy in my classes. I'm gonna miss you a lot, but I know you will be back :)
And Christie Conners, I just bet I didn't spell your first name right, again! I had to save you till the end cuz I think I was the closest to you this year. I loved how you called me Mama Agrums, I loved watching you grow up from the 7th thru the 12th grade. (Let me tell you it was a bit of a rocky road woman) You are such a beautiful young woman, but I don't think you even get that yet. You have personality plus and you always made class so much fun. You have such crazy, wonderful energy, and you are such a sneaky little thing, you remind me so much of me. LOL Damn, I'm gonna miss you like crazy, you had better keep in touch, and don't go too wild up there at Santa Barbara. I expect you to do some homework, you know? And like actually go to the classes you don't like LOL. I expect great things from you, and I love you like my own daughter. Behave yourself, and keep in touch woman.