“MCAD encourages you to be a weirdo, try things, fail, try again . . . you can't get that everywhere and I miss it.”

“I love that what I want to do aligns with how I support myself. I also love seeing people's reactions to my work and that I get to see things I create out in the world.”

“My secret to not getting stuck in the first place is to stay curious and fascinated with the world and to have the confidence to nerd out about stuff that might not be cool until you filter it through your art brain.”

“I look back at MCAD and see it as four years where I learned technical skills, learned about art, and found out who I am.”

“I loved having all of MCAD's resources at my fingertips.”

“The ongoing relationships with [MCAD] alumni and teachers I still maintain to this day is the biggest thing I hold on to. It's enhanced me as an artist and helped me in my career.”

“My inspiration comes from knowledge. I am an avid researcher so when I come across a gem of information, the concepts immediately begin to evolve in my head.”

“I wanted the major with the broadest potential for diverse and interdisciplinary work, where the fewest boundaries would be built in.”

Aaron James Draplin; Portrait by Leah Nash

Draplin is a graphic designer and founder of Draplin Design Co. He has worked with an array of impressive clientele, appeared on WTF with Marc Maron, and recently published his first book Pretty Much Everything.

Hall is a fashion design alum who spent a year studying in Europe during her time at MCAD. She now works as a fashion designer and instructor.

Palacios decided to study sustainable design because he wanted to learn about better design practices and be able to address industry concerns about environmentally conscious solutions.

“MCAD is a very respected school and the networking is unbelievable. I have been able to travel to other states and contact alumni to talk design and network with, which is really valuable in this field. I'm not sure where I'd be without it.”

“I started out as a photography major, but I switched to fine arts studio so I could have more freedom with my photography work, incorporate sculptural elements, and so I could have a studio. I felt like my classes were very open and allowed for a lot of experimentation.”

Knudson loves working alongside creative thinkers and providing creative solutions to problems.

A number of internships held as a student helped Kern find her path in the world of graphic design, eventually leading her to New York City.

Macarayan holds a great illustration and design job at a stationery company in one of the prettiest cities in the Midwest.

Perry's hard work ethic and do-or-die attitude toward design have helped her land a sweet gig at MAC cosmetics—where she works with fellow alumni.

“I love that every time that I start an illustration, whether it's for a client or a personal work, it is a complete new challenge. Every day is different and exciting, which is a gift in today's world.”

Dolan currently works in a publishing office that is dog-friendly, has frequent access to "awesome treats left over from photo shoots", and allows her to see her work printed in lots of "glamorous glossies."

Possehl is a studio assistant for Curtis Centennial Project and Christopher Cardozo Fine Art, working for a private art collector and leading expert on the work of Edward S. Curtis.