RSO creates space for community of artists.
BY GABRIEL KING, STAFF WRITER
Illustrators at Mason is a registered student organization (RSO) that has been helping students find their creative outlets since 2017, and the organization has grown significantly over the years. The current president of the club is senior Kristin Zhai.
“The mission of Illustrators at Mason is to be a space for creatives to connect and grow together,” said Zhai.
And although the club was originally created for illustrators, Zhai emphasizes that all artists are welcome. “Art is a different journey for everyone, and we are all at different stages in our path, so our space is to inspire, learn, and grow with each other.”
Illustrators at Mason holds bi-weekly meetings called Sketch Jams, where members can create different forms of art. The Sketch Jams inspired the creation of the club, as they were popular among students, which led to Illustrators at Mason becoming a hit on-campus. “Ever since, the club has [grown] and provided a community for creatives and encompassed all fields such as illustrators, painters, jewelers, crafters, game designers, and more,” said Zhai.
At a recent Sketch Jam, the Illustrators hosted a stamp-making session, which allowed members to experience a different form of art. This an example of how Sketch Jams can inspire artists to explore new things while also focusing on their artistic passions.
Along with Sketch Jams, Illustrators at Mason also hosts Mason Artist Alley, an annual art fair that allows students to showcase and sell their work. Artist Alley serves as a stepping stone for artists, as they can gain exposure and display their talents. “We have had many students who had enjoyed selling their work in-person and would move on to sell at events like ComiCons, art conventions, anime expos, farmer markets, and other art fairs outside of Mason,” said Zhai.
Artist Alley also helps the Illustrators accomplish their goal of allowing creatives to connect and grow together. Zhai adds that along with the artists, guests and visitors benefit from the opportunity to gain creative inspiration and see Mason’s talented artists. The 2023 Mason Artist Alley will be held at the Johnson Center on Sunday, April 30. Over 100 student artists are expected to showcase their work. “Everyone has been working hard to create really beautiful work to share with the community,” Zhai said. Students can register to attend the event through Mason 360.
Students who are interested in joining Illustrators at Mason, or just want to see some of their work, can get connected through their Instagram and Discord server.