Question: All applicants must submit a short essay of one or two pages in length that describes a significant person or experience that has influenced your decision to become a designer or artist.
I have always been into arts, I can never remember a time where I have ever stopped drawing; constantly creating sketches on the sides of my notebooks, helping friends in art classes, making designs for different school magazines, and participating in art activities or projects. It is what I have always been good at, although for a long time I have thought of it as yet another hobby; I never thought that drawing could actually be looked upon as a major.
I was in grade Ten when I finally started highlighting and giving art more attention. And that's after a certain experience that changed my whole aspect of art.
The art teacher told us about a competition organized by "Al-Amal Hospital" in Qatar, which treats cancer patients. Participants were asked to write and draw a story for kids, which featured the theme "hope", the winning story was to be published, and read by the children being treated in Al Amal hospital. Originally, I wasn't very interested, thinking that it was just a normal competition like the ones I usually participate in. But as the teacher started explaining more and more about it and how it had a very noble purpose, I started to grow fonder of the idea. Fortunately, I was right, this competition was different, not for any fact other than that it opened a door for me to a different chunk of Art that I didn't know existed.
So I started working with one of my classmates, she was the one responsible for writing the story, and I was responsible for drawing it. The story was about a kid who was born different than the other kids his own age, for he was too small in size. The story tells how this kid is unable to join his friends at school, because of all the obstacles and barriers that the road to school is filled with. Throughout the story the hero overcomes everything with the help of his knowledge and the people around him. Drawing the story was very easy to me, because for once I had something specific to work on; drawing had never been more fun or relaxing. I drew the whole story bearing in mind the unfortunate, sick kids. I wanted for the kids to feel like they belonged to the story, so I worked hard to accomplish that, drawing one of the hero's friends bald, considering the fact that Al Amal hospital treats cancer patients. I also focused on drawing a lot of people around the hero, trying to show the kids that they are always surrounded by their loved ones who always cared, and were concerned about them. I understood how thrilling, satisfying, and unbelievably easy it is to draw for a certain cause.
This competition really had the most, if not the only, meaningful effect that any other competition had; I was able to discover how I can use my art to help others. Not many people can say that they are completely satisfied with the outcome of their passion, I'm very grateful to have found the true meaning of my own passion. The news never arrived about the competition, but oddly enough, it was more than just fine! For I believe the discovery that I have made was the ultimate winning prize.