Sometimes finding your true calling can feel like flipping on a light switch. Just ask designer Zorine Pooladian ENVL ’12.
The Environmental Design alum was first turned on to the world of lighting design in an Art Center at Night (ACN) course; these days she’s working on a lighting project she plans to unveil at New York Design Week next year.
We sat down recently with Pooladian to ask her about her ACN experience, and here’s what she told us:
“I have always loved art and architecture. I grew up in a 300-year-old house in Iran that had high ceilings and walls covered in paintings. As a child, I remember being amazed that somebody could leave something behind that would last for centuries.”
“My family moved to the United States when I was 17 to give me a chance to follow my dreams. About a month after arriving in the country we visited Art Center. I loved the campus, even the experience of driving to it was exciting—I kept thinking What comes next? after each curve.
“When I visited the gallery, I couldn’t believe I was looking at student work. I asked an admissions counselor about the model buildings on display and she told me they were created by Environmental Design students. I immediately wanted to apply. The counselor said I first needed to put together a portfolio and recommended I enroll in Art Center at Night.
“I fell in love when I took Lighting Design with Daniel Gottlieb and Penny Herscovitch. It was one of the best classes I took at Art Center At Night. Even though light surrounds us every day, before that course I had never before thought about it as being designed.
“I had also never taken a course taught by two instructors before. Daniel and Penny had high expectations but they made the class really fun. I loved getting two sets of perspectives on my work. They both thought I was capable of doing something great and they kept pushing me to do better. For the final I created lighting using string and balloons. They were so supportive that they gave me an entire room near the Public Programs gallery to install my project.
“Now, as an Art Center Environmental Design alumna I’m preparing a lighting project to show in New York. I’m thankful for all my family, teachers, friends and others who have supported me over the years and who are helping me make my dream come true.”
ACN Fall 2012 courses start September 10; register today!