Art is important for Gulliver Prep senior Ros Fiol. This year he’s the president of the Art Honor Society, an organization that last year painted a mural at Howard Drive Elementary School. The mural was located near the library and the art room.
“It’s a three-part mural,” he says. “It has a very simple outside background — a field, trees and clouds with kids reading books.”
The mural took more than five weekends to create, primarily because they didn’t want to disrupt school by painting during the week. So the art club members went to Howard Drive for five Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
“In total it took about 35 hours,” he says. “We came in after finals to finish.”
This year, Fiol is taking Advanced Placement, Studio Art for his art course.
“I like to make things that are interesting to do and for others to look at,” he says. “I’m not one for complex ideas; I like to make stuff that makes people happy, that entertains. A lot of art to me is about enjoyment.”
Fiol says he likes to draw uncomplicated things in an interesting way. For example, he might draw pyramids but put those pyramids underwater.
“A lot of it is made up as I go and I enjoy the process,” he says.
Fiol likes to create digital art but he also likes pen and pencil.
While he enjoys art enough to apply for admission to a couple of art schools for college, he says art school is not his preferred option.
“I want to go a university that has a strong arts program, but also has strong academics,” he says. “I want a college that has options. I can see myself changing my mind often in college.”
His list includes the University of Florida and Yale, as well as the Ringling School of Art and Design and Florida State University.
Another of his passions is Japanese. This summer, he was a student ambassador on a People-to-People trip to Japan. “It was a life-changing experience as my first trip outside of the United States, and I am so grateful to have been able to take part,” he says. “The program included a three-night home stay with a Japanese family who spoke little or no English.
It was an amazing first-taste of living in a different culture and finally being able to practice Japanese outside of the classroom.”
Fiol has been studying Japanese for about six years and he would like to combine his appreciation for art and his love of Japan by finding work at an animation studio in Japan. He also likes the idea of working in education.
“I want something that blends everything,” he says. “Right now, it’s difficult to find,”
Along with being president of the Art Honor Society, Fiol is president of the Japanese Honor Society. He is vice president of the Japanese Culture Club and a member of the Environmental Club, the Cumae Laude Club and Mu Alpha Theta.
“Most of my extracurricular activities are fairly independent,” he says. “I’m trying to teach myself computer animation and computer science.”
Fiol’s community service includes painting the mural and working with Art Cares for Kids, an organization that provides children who have medical issues with art supplies.
“We send whatever we have to Art Cares for Kids,” he says. “This past year in April we compiled an art activity book. We sent them a book that had simple arts-and-crafts activities for younger kids.”
By Linda Rodriguez Bernfeld