Charley Albert’s AP Art Portfolio

Charley Albert

As of May 5, the AP Art Studio students submitted their portfolios to the College Board. We saw all kinds of different styles, themes, and mediums at JCHS this year. Artists expanded their skills and challenged themselves. In this article, we will be covering my own Portfolio which tackled academic stress! Each artist makes a statement, called an inquiry statement, about their artistic intentions that guide their art as they work on their portfolio. Here was mine: 

How can I demonstrate the pressures I feel from school through art? Does higher knowledge or competition motivate me to do well in school and to what extent is my stress self-imposed? I aim to use shades, lines, and color to express these ideas through various mediums including stamps, clay, and watercolor paint. Repetition will be a large presence in my portfolio, and it is significant because it will emphasize the pressures my investigation should capture. I will show viewers my struggle to create boundaries between life and school as well as the academic burnout I feel so often.


Photo courtesy of Charley Albert

Title: The Unknown Variable

Medium: Acrylic on paper

Significance: This piece encapsulates the struggle I have separating my academic life from my personal life. This painting illustrates how I let my schoolwork take over my mind when I should be enjoying myself or taking a break. Homework is something that constantly looms in my mind. I choose to paint an orange because I love the visual of peeling back the skin. I choose to paint food in this painting because I often do homework during meal times when I should be chatting with my family and ultimately being more present. 



Photo courtesy of Charley Albert

Title: Dozing Off

Medium: Stamps on Collage

Significance: This project is supposed to resemble the concept of a stop-motion film. Basically, a stop-motion production is created by taking dozens of pictures, each with slight differences, and putting them together so it looks like an object is moving. Similarly, in all these stamps (from left to right), I move slightly, and together they create a sequence of me studying and drifting off to sleep. I chose to do this piece on a collaged background because I thought it would be a bit overwhelming to the viewer, which is reflective of how I feel when I have a lot of homework but not a lot of time. 



Photo courtesy of Charley Albert

: Focus & Relief

Medium: (Left) Watercolor, Sharpie, and Collage; (Right) Watercolor

Significance: This piece is a diptych; it has two parts that can stand alone, but ultimately make one whole. The two pieces are made of different styles, but they come together in their color scheme and focus. In the piece on the left, you can see me focusing hard to break a pencil. In the image on the right, I have successfully broken the pencil and I am basking in my success. These pieces represent a desire I have to not do any work at all, to “break” off all of my responsibilities. I imagine it would feel satisfying, like the second picture, however, I don’t see myself letting all my work go in the near future, or possibly at all. 

Photo courtesy of Charley Albert

Title: The Hand that Writes

Medium: Clay and Collage

Significance: This sculpture is modeled after my own hand. I choose to cover it in a newspaper collage in order to communicate my relationship between academics and identity, similar to the orange piece above. Often, I feel that the things I produce in school, whether that be papers, grades, or presentations, are a part of my identity.  Here, the newspaper represents my schoolwork, and it is taking the place of the skin on my hand; it depicts me as my work. So, while this shows that I work hard in school, it is more of a warning to myself that I need to separate my schoolwork from my identity, particularly from my self-worth.


Photo courtesy of Charley Albert

Title: Paper Invasion

Medium: Oils on Canvas

Significance: This is a scene of my room before midterms, and I will admit that it is a bit dramatized for effect. There are papers and flashcards strewn everywhere as a result of my studying, and also panicking. The title uses the word invasion because, at this time, it felt as though my schoolwork was taking over and eating me up. When I originally crafted this piece, I disliked it because I didn’t think it looked very realistic. Now, however, I like it a lot. The scene has a sort of whimsical character to it; it’s not just a boring bedroom. I also have recently noticed how the paper looks alive, like some sort of monstrous creature, and that compliments the message of this piece.