Profiles of Courage: Erin GarceauTuesday, March 02, 2010 By Emily Matheny
S itting in a gym and observing the winning shot of a game is a common pastime for a high school student. But Erin Garceau is a breath of fresh air compared to the multitude of high school students who fit this mold. Garceau’s name might not be in the paper because she scored ten points in a single game, but what she’s doing is something that takes just as much determination and God-given talent as any other activity found at Bay Port. Garceau’s favorite sport is art. She is at her best with a drawing utensil in her hand and a canvas in front of her. But it took a while for her to realize that this is what Garceau was born to do. In eighth grade Garceau and a foreign friend bonded over an obscure book genre based on the art form of Anime. Anime usually refers to a style of animation originating in Japan, heavily influenced by the manga (Japanese comics) style and typically featuring characters with large eyes, big hair, elongated limbs, exaggerated facial expressions, brush-stroked outlines, limited motion, and other distinctive features. Garceau loved it so much that she decided to try to draw some of them. Little did she know, her drawings would surpass anything she could find in the anime books. She continued to succeed so much in art that she found herself good enough to enter contests that would eventually win her over seven hundred dollars worth of scholarship money, including the Blue Sky Art Contest and the Silver Lake Church contest for her rendition of children in Mali. Not only does she love to draw, but studying art and the different techniques is something Garceau has also become well accustomed to. She loves the aspects of surrealism, or artwork that almost always has an aspect of surprise, and her favorite artwork pieces are done by Arina Tanemura. We may not even begin to understand why Garceau enjoys this complicated pastime, but as we look at her artwork, we see that she experiences feelings through art, something most of us can barely do by opening our mouths. Yet, this amazing artist says, “I never look back to previous artwork; I always need to move forward.” Always taking the next step in her artwork is what keeps Garceau’s artwork exciting and new. She finds inspiration from the world around her and the pure creativity that runs through her. Over the years, she has taken more than four art classes a year plus the six she is taking as a senior. Mr. Richardson has been fortunate to have her in advanced art and exclaims, “ Erin is extremely talented and expressive. It is always a joy to see what she will do next.” Garceau has a talent that can’t be watched, like a sporting event, but should be appreciated. We, as high school students, say we can’t relate to this form of “sport,” but have any of us tried to understand the meaning behind the artwork hanging around our own school? Garceau gives us that insight to look at something and sees that it has a message behind it, a message that we wouldn’t find going to a ball game every other weekend.