Senior finds creative outlet in makerspace projects

January 25, 2020

Isabella Kellermeier
LEARNING BY BUILDING. Hands full, senior Marcelo Gutierrez-Miranda works to exercise his passion for design in Lab’s Makerspace.
“As an artist, designer, you’re always looking for ways to validate or rationalize the time and work that you’re spending, ”Marcelo said. “It’s much harder to justify the projects that I do than it is to justify going to class every day.”

“I think most people go out to find independent studies, but for me the independent study found me,” senior Marcelo Gutierrez-Miranda said.

His interest in 3D printing started well before he got to U-High.

Marcelo said he appreciates his Makerspace Art independent study because it allows him to create freely and explore his interest in designing at the artistic guidance of art teacher Brian Wildeman.

The students who use the Makerspace room, as well as Mr. Wildeman, are free to explore projects that interest them as well as their school assignments.

“I do a little bit of private, for-myself projects, but mostly I help the students do what they’re trying to achieve,” Mr. Wildeman said.

Mr. Wildeman said his involvement with and the expansion of the Makerspace machines was sparked by Marcelo.

Brian Wildeman

“Marcelo taught me as much how to use the printers as I taught him,” Mr. Wildeman said. “I guide him more in terms of thinking of aesthetics.”

Marcelo has explored the topic with Mr. Wildeman for four years but only received credit for Makerspace Art as an independent study for one.  Marcelo is still thankful that he could turn his unique interest into a class.

“As an artist, designer, you’re always looking for ways to validate or rationalize the time and work that you’re spending,” Marcelo said. “It’s much harder to justify the projects that I do than it is to justify going to class every day.”

Mr. Wildeman has helped the science team as well as his art students in the Makerspace.

“One of the things that the Makerspace is great for is a crossover from things like science and math to art and back and forth,” said Mr. Wildeman. “They inspire each other in this space.”

Mr Wildeman said, “When [Marcelo] came to this school, he was looking for an engineering class, and there wasn’t one. Since that time, he has become much more of a designer, and I think that just was because I’m the person he found.”

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Senior finds creative outlet in makerspace projects