• Sally Maeng

I want to try everything artsy

Uliana's story

"Where's your family from? Unimportant, there's a million things I haven't done. Just you wait, just you wait..." (Satisfied, Original Broadway Cast of Hamilton)


Uliana is the epitome of someone who graduated with a BFA or a Bachelor of Fine Arts. She loves to sing, act, write, draw, paint, knit, sew, play instruments, build props, sculpt clay, and so much more (as if this list isn't long enough). In summary, Uliana is passionate about engaging and trying all types of art.


She adores creative work. Uliana wants to attempt every art medium out there, including writing Hebrew poetry, carving Inuit soapstones, and weaving Nepali tapestries. Currently, Uliana is working to build a tagelharpa, which is best described as a Viking cello. Then she'll teach herself how to play this instrument. At the same time, she's crafting an 18th-century countryside woman's costume complete with a straw hat. Uliana sees beauty in uniqueness and strives to celebrate it.


When I asked Uliana where the energy to create all these things comes from, she said she's motivated by inspiration. For example, she was at a beautiful spot by the ocean between Jericho Beach and Kitsilano Beach in Vancouver. As she basked in the morning sun, she remembered a series of YouTube videos made by Jonna Jinton. The combination of the breathtaking scenery and Joana's masterpieces somehow inspired Uliana to build that obscure instrument...


If you're a little confused about how inspiration wakes and fuels Uliana, so am I. But to this wonderstruck BFA graduate, this all makes sense. It's as if Uliana is like Pocohauntus, who can understand the whispers in the wind that gives her the confidence and excitement in what she should create next.


Despite Uliana's passion for trying all types of art, this isn't her job. She works at an after-school children's program. Once in a while, she makes sets, props, and costumes for small theatres. However, Uliana is not commissioned to create; her artwork does not earn her income. All this work is on her own time, and she loves it.


This goes to show that passion and career do not always have to align. It would be incredibly nice to get paid to do what you're passionate about. But just because you can't turn your passion into a job does not mean your passion is less valuable. Uliana agrees that trying different art is worth the investment of her time, money, and energy. Evidently, the returns she receives are vitality, euphoria, and self-respect.


Meanwhile, a little whisper in the wind is inspiring Uliana to be passionate about using beauty and creating for healing. So she's exploring whether a Master's of Art Therapy is the next step. This could launch a career where she encourages clients to try different art mediums to improve their mental and emotional health. Basically, her passion and paid position might elope. So who knows? Maybe Uliana will have a job that lets her and others try a million creative things they haven't done...just you wait, just you wait.


To contact Uliana and learn more about this story, follow @ulkaakulka on Instagram.


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