Photo Project

Hidden Talent At PSU

Luke Johnston is an upper class man at Portland State University. He may seem like an ordinary PSU student with piercings and a “you’ll never catch me wearing my high school Letterman jacket” attitude but there is more to him then meets the eye. Johnston is a talented artist and musician. Graphic design holds a great deal of interest for him and he hopes to one day design the cover art for his favorite record labels. In High School, Johnston won numerous awards in art shows and continues to display his work whenever the chance arises. He once sold a piece for $300 to a stranger passing by Johnston’s car as he was loading it in. Whenever Johnston runs low on inspiration, he takes a trip to his favorite Tacobell to people watch and refuel his inspiration tank. Johnston is not the student you will find hanging out after classes socializing and attending school events but you may one day see his art on an advertisement or as cover art on your next iTunes download. With a degree in Communications and Graphic Design he may actually reach that goal.


I <3 Media

Under the sea was where my dreams were when I was growing up. The Little Mermaid was just the absolute in entertainment. There were mer-people, songs, and even funny crabs. Who could deny their love for it as a child. Ariel was always my favorite princess growing up. Originally it was for artificial reasons like we both had really long red hair and liked to swim. However, as I grew older she remained in my heart because of her desire to travel to other cultures (the surface in her case) and learn about them even though everyone else around her feared it. I took this life lesson to heart at an early age and began traveling with my grandparents any chance I could get.

My grandparents immigrated to the United States from Germany during the Cold War and always taught me not to fear someone who is different but to be curious about them and get to know them. Looking back now I don’t believe that this lesson came from enlightenment but from having seen and been on the wrong end of judgment throughout they’re lives. My great grandfather had been killed ,by his superiors in the Nazi army ,because he stuck up for the Jews. They aren’t willing to talk about anything else that happened to our family during the war but I doubt that it was anything particularly pleasant although I can’t assume the worst either. Then, during the cold war they immigrated to a country that still harbored a lot of angst and anger toward Germany. This is most likely where the lesson came from. Naturally, at the time I was far too young to know any of that and really learned it from my favorite Disney movie (followed closely by Pocahontas for the same reason).

I feel rather fortunate for the lesson from Disney and my Grandparents. I can not claim to be free of prejudice by any means but I feel I am much more tolerant and eager to learn of other societies then most of the people I graduated high school with. I have recently been taking courses to try and better understand the cultures in the Middle East. And I am beginning to wonder how much conflict could be resolved (within the Middle East and globally) if more kids would really listen and see what Ariel and Pocahontas were trying to teach us? Fear of the unknown can drive us to terrible things. Of course this type of attitude towards everything in life living it to the full would be disastrous. Stereotypes usually exist for a reason but shouldn’t be taken as doctrine

Here is my picture that I feel illustrates the main idea I am trying to convey (as well as a few pivital moments from the Disney films):

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