Bureaucracy and red tape fill every profession. My first encounter with it in education was as a candidate for a teaching license. I thought it would be pretty straightforward. That was my first mistake. I was toiling away at my classes, weekly observations, and working full-time. I get to month three and the powers that be said I needed to take a fine arts class since I didn’t have one in undergraduate work. I was under the impression that real-world experience was worth something. I won’t make that mistake again. I will tell you why I was a little miffed. At the time of my teacher training, I was working as a photgrapher. I worked for Lifetouch studios doing school pictures. My specialty was the athletic teams and individual athletes as well as doing regular school pictures. I was working for the University of Denver, where I was getting my license, for the sports information office. I also had the opportunity to work for the Colorado Rangers Hockey Club and by extension the New York Rangers. I did action and team pictures for them that ended up in newspapers, magazines, and media guides. I even did some work for the United States Olympic Hockey Team. Surely, this would be enough to meet any requirement for fine arts. As a last resort, I even offered to send in some of the wedding pictures I had done.
Nothing seemed to please them and so I was going to have to take a class. Katherine Kelly was our program director and she said I had a couple of options. I could pay DU $1,500 or take one from the community college for $300. I chose the community college. What an exceptional choice I made. I took an art appreciation class and had a great time. We had a professor that showed us art and how to view and critique it. She also had us create art. We did pottery, collages, drawing, and painting. It made a necessary task a joy. I knew that I was going to be a lifelong learner. I could have complained the entire time but I chose to embrace the experience and look forward to the class every week.