SIGIL welcomes student creatives


Students attend the “Graveyard Shift” gallery show. (GVL Xavier Golden)

Ysabela Golden, Staff Reporter

The Student Interest Group for Illustrators— also known as the SIGIL Illustration Club— is a group open to art and non-art majors alike. Their goal is to build a creative environment for anyone interested in illustrating, whether as a career or purely as recreation. On Thursday, Oct. 28, the club celebrated that creativity with the annual “Graveyard Shift” gallery show, where students could submit spooky or autumnal-themed art to be displayed for the holiday.

“It’s a yearly event that we try to put on,” said club president Bre Arias. “It’s technically done by the VMA department, but SIGIL and SIGIL eboard coordinates getting entries and setting it up. It’s a nice little party and art show. We had a bunch of pieces to display— there was even one animated submission, which was displayed on a laptop.”

In addition to seasonal events like the Graveyard Shift and an upcoming holiday card workshop, the eboard also puts together new activities based on what members want to try out or get more practice in.

GVL Xavier Golden

“We have been trying to have more life drawing nights because a lot of students don’t have experience with life drawing,” Arias said. “We have one coming up on the 11th, when we’re actually having hired models come in. Last time we just had some eboard members model— dress up in costumes, use some props, that sort of thing. But this upcoming one, I’m going through the club advisor, who’s one of my professors. And he’ll go through the process of hiring the models. It’ll essentially be like a life drawing class, just for a two-hour time.”

Other meetings involve sketching and working on art while attending webinars, like the panel “How to be an Intern at Apple, NASA, Nike, and Tesla,” hosted by Adobe.

“That event was a lot about helpful advice for how to get internships or jobs, improve your resume, that sort of thing,” Arias said. “For illustration students, there is no internship required for our degree. So I think that kind of info is pretty useful since that’s something we don’t get much experience in. The reason that event came about is because our vice president Beth has a job through Adobe to be a Discord manager, so she’s always in the know with these things and brings up neat events that we can do.”

GVL Xavier Golden

When not attending special events, the club’s meeting place is in the Calder Art Center, room 1510.

“We always meet on Thursdays from 8 to 10 pm,” Arias said. “Most people bring their own supplies, but we have paper and colored pencils that we can supply for anyone who needs it. At the beginning of the semesters, we try to do a little ‘introduce yourself’ event. Sometimes we do Meet The Artist drawings, which is where you draw an image of yourself with your interests and your name and other little details about you on it. And then throughout the semester, we’ll sometimes do a ‘speed dating’ esque activity where we’ll go around the room and we’ll draw each other.”

Outside of Thursday meetings, the club also has a Discord server for chatting and sharing creative projects.

“The Discord is open to anyone with an interest in the club,” Arias said. “It keeps everyone updated on events, we have announcements there, and it’s a great way to get in contact with us, because the eboard members are always active there. We have channels where you can share your art, or ask for critiques if you’d like— most of us, being art students, have a lot of experience in doing that. And if you have an art assignment you need to get done, you can get a quicker response from the club than you can waiting for your class and getting feedback there.”

Those interested in learning more about the club can find them on Instagram as @gvsu_sigil, Facebook as @gvsuillustration, and LakerLink as sigil-illustration.

“We just try to have a good creative environment where we can interact and work with each other,” Arias said. “And we’re always looking to do new ideas and collaborate. It’s just whenever you have time, you can show up. It’s a nice time to give yourself to be creative, if you need a break from your regular school work, it can be great stress relief.”

GVL Xavier Golden