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Tech Grad Heads to Yellowstone

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Arkansas Tech graduate Travis Johnson is spending his summer at Yellowstone National Park in an effort to prepare for a career in the art industry.

Johnson is working at Yellowstone National Park throughout the summer helping to repaint many of the facilities, but he is also using the opportunity to create a body of work to showcase his artistic talents.

“I wanted to challenge myself artistically by coming to a place that has been tapped due to the huge amount of artwork made about this place,” explained Johnson.

Johnson says the hardest part about his summer adventure was saying goodbye to his grandmother.

“I tried not to think about it and just do it,” said Johnson.

In addition to moving across the country, Johnson has also had to acclimate to a different artistic environment to create his art.

“It has been an adjustment having to work outside rather than using any kind of studio to make art,” said Johnson.

One of Johnson’s favorite parts of his position is being able explore his surroundings.

“My first day here I was in Canyon Village, which is about 50 miles north of Old Faithful and the power was out the entire day.  I also got to experience about five inches of snow in late May,” said Johnson.  “Visually speaking, the thermal features are the most interesting.  Lots of different minerals cause these really unnatural and psychedelic colors to form on the ground surface.”

At the end of the summer, Johnson hopes to use the work he has created in his portfolio for graduate school.

“After I leave here, I want to stop in Arkansas for a few weeks before heading to Austin,” said Johnson.  “My plan is to get settled in Austin and then apply to begin the master’s program in fine arts at the University of Texas.”

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