Alumni Spotlight: Shawn Hakes, Commercial Art

Shawn Hakes, EASTERN 2016 Commercial Art graduate.Eastern Center for Arts and Technology (EASTERN) 2016 Commercial Art and Upper Moreland High School alumni, Shawn Hakes, is attending West Chester University for graphic design, while taking acting classes at a repertory theater in Philadelphia called Playhouse West Philadelphia. In addition to graphic design and acting, Hakes is also a volunteer for a non-profit organization called Speak About It, which travels to colleges discussing consent, boundaries and healthy relationships.

Prior to his studies at West Chester University, Shawn attended another art school that did not fit his needs. He withdrew from the program and took a year to work and focus on his acting education. He is an advocate for finding your passion and finding the right places to pursue it.

“You don’t have to know exactly what you want to do with your life. You have time to figure it out, but if you want to do anything in the art world, check out Commercial Art at EASTERN,” said Hakes. “I joined EASTERN thinking that I wanted to be a photographer. Here I am five years later working as an actor and majoring in Graphic Design. You will have fun learning how to create art that could turn into a career. You will be shocked when you move on and find that you are ten times more prepared than your classmates or colleagues because you have been taught by amazing teachers how to be strong and confident individuals.”

Hakes credits EASTERN for his time management skills, which has helped him tremendously in his life post high school. He believes the tools he acquired in the Commercial Art program prepared him for the realities of what is expected of people in the real world. His EASTERN instructors taught him to take criticism constructively without taking it personally.

Commercial Art at EASTERN covers everything from conceptual drawing and design to a professional portfolio. Students learn the value and application of their unique styles in both design and illustration and how to use industry-standard software on the Macintosh platform. Core software includes Adobe InDesign, Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator. Upon completion of the program, students will have a portfolio consisting of items for entry into their postsecondary school of choice as well as National Portfolio Day.

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