Artistic clubs find new solutions

While most students are equipped with the necessary supplies to attend classes and take notes from home, the same can’t be said about club activities. After all, while it may be a simple task to purchase an expensive device—like a 3D printer—for club use, getting one installed in members’ homes would prove a difficult task.  With online learning keeping clubs from meeting face to face, some artistically driven clubs have had to make drastic changes to their work environment, while also trying not to sacrifice productivity. Print3d Works, a STEM club bridging business and design, has decided to continue manufacturing commissions and club projects, but has moved its production center to one of its club advisor’s workshops instead. With such a large space, they are able to continue working and doing what they love while following appropriate COVID-19 safety protocols. “We are dealing with the current situation by continuing to take orders and moving production to Mr. Bloomfield’s shop. Because the work area is so large, we are able to keep production going in this time,” co-president and senior Caitlin Lee said via email. What has allowed the club to continue expansion during quarantine has been through the aid of Joe Bloomfield, the owner of a business called Spyder3D.  “He reached out to our club and essentially offered to be our source… we get our machinery and materials from him,” co-president and senior Gracel Mutuc said via direct message. The club maintains social distancing, when possible, along with using a sensor-activated thermometer, face coverings and hand sanitizer stations. With these safety precautions, club members are able to go to the workshop on their own time and help with assembly and design. Print3d Works has taken up many new projects, including the on-campus floor decals, among other goods. These decals are spaced six feet apart to help maintain social distancing, and have made events like taking yearbook photos safe for students. “Even though things are tough due to the school’s extended closure, we have been keeping ourselves busy by making social distancing signage and introducing new customizable products like embroidered face masks,” Lee said. On the other hand, clubs like the Art Society haven’t had to change much to accommodate distance learning protocols. With their club activities revolving around drawing workshops, contests and discussion of members’ futures involving art, its activities have remained mostly the same.  Even without seeing each other face to face, the club has taken this opportunity to begin pursuing workshops focused on digitally drawn art and have been promoting the club using social media flyers. Like many other clubs this school year, the Art Society uses the Remind app and Facebook to keep members up to date.  “It’s harder to schedule things with people you don’t see face to face,” club president and senior Nicole Zhu said. In order to combat this, club officers have begun organizing an online schedule to help keep members up to date and accountable regarding club activities. “Meetings are hosted on Zoom and we are looking to incorporate more online art games like to keep members engaged,” Zhu said.  The adaptations these clubs have made allow them and their members to continue pursuing their passions regardless of hardships. A mix of activities and meetings help maintain the close, friendly atmosphere of each club, even as the pandemic keeps members apart.