“Art should be a gift basically to the world.”
Howard University Alumnus Summer Brown shares a gift with her students that she has found refuge in since she was a little girl. It was her first black teacher, Ms. Wilson, who made painting intriguing to her when she was just in the first grade. Professor Brown now awakens the minds of young adults in her classroom teaching painting at her alma mater.
Hailing from Massachusetts, Summer graduated from Howard University with a BFA in Drawing and Painting and would later get her Masters Degree in Museum Exhibition Planning and Design.
The most exciting part of teaching her students how to paint is using art as the foundation of learning. She stated that there is nothing like the first day of class when students say they can’t draw and then watching them progress over time.
“There are so many tools in terms of learning,” she stated. Just like the youth can recite and pick up behavior from the simplest of rap lyrics, she feels that her students can uncover hidden truths about themselves through painting. She also thinks that music and art are synonymous for these reasons.
Her advice to all artists: Be inspired by your peers and know what your niche is.
Learning through art is not only effective, it is therapeutic. “Use art as a meditative process.” Professor Brown uses her craft to shape the minds of young black men and women at Howard University. There is enough pain, sorrow, and negativity in the world. She provides an outlet for her students with embedded lessons through her own passion. That is a dream come true. Painting a piece of mind.