What happens at the intersection of art and science?
This is the central question behind my Woodrow Wilson Fellowship research and the driving force behind my general philosophy. I believe that magic happens where inspiration meets explanation and the bigger the questions, the better the answers.
I’m currently studying Physics and Applied Mathematics and Statistics at Johns Hopkins University. I spent the summer of 2017 as an International Space Station intern at NASA Headquarters and the summers of 2015-2016 at the Space Telescope Science Institute doing Hubble instrumentation research that was published in the Astrophysical Journal.
Oil is quickly becoming my favorite painting medium. There are a few examples of that here, alongside gouache, watercolor, and acrylic.
Watch my oil painting timelapse here.
I am a Ferris wheel junkie.
Have you ever sucked a hard candy?
Smooth, ever-melting sun.
Cackling cyclone howls enthrall me like
Pinwheel moons and rounds of cheese.
Open-mouthed horses loop forever
On the merry-go-round at the mall,
But somehow forget how to prance.
Peter Seeger was the best ballerina I ever saw I whisper
But the wide-eyed horses just
Turn, turn, turn.
The following poem received a national American Voices Award and regional Gold Key Award in the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards. It was published in the 2014 edition of Scholastic’s National Catalog and Best Teen Writing.
The poem is a dialogue between an optimist (read by A) and a realist (read by B).
When life seems to be tough,
When times grow to be hard,
I recoil from society and
Seek refuge in the stars.
The trees, they are my essence
My love helps keep me going,
How do you-
And I know that even though it may feel that way, I never am alone.
That makes no sense. You-
The river runs steadily on,
Washing my fears away,
And I can’t possibly stay angry when
The fresh rain hits my face.
Face the facts. You
Find refuge in trees?
How can the stars possibly
Set you free?
Just because it sounds pretty and poetic
Doesn’t mean it’s true.
See? Don’t you see
That the winds do set me free,
And when the butterflies all flutter by,
My soul fills up with glee.
My one true love
Sent from above
Keeps me company
Have all we need, just he and me,
Just me and he. We’ll be-
You’ll be irresponsible
With your word dispensation.
Your ‘lyrically lovely’ infatuation
Is nothing more than language.
I don’t want to hear about your trees!
Your heavily romanticized, idealized love,
Your divine clarity sent from above
Isn’t necessarily as serene and surreal
As you make it out to be.
You don’t have to feel
Flabbergasted, wonderstruck, absolutely blessed-with-luck
In order to manipulate your words to portray it
And that’s why it’s not true just because you say it.
I’m not saying it just to say it,
I feel differently than you
And though your love may be rough and raw,
My love is sweet and true.
Just like the movies, and just like the books,
I fell head over heels at first look
The electricity swirls and pulses and tingles,
And the spark I feel—of course you’re single!
That’s the problem!
You dreamer, you schemer,
You pick your words carefully but you fall down hard.
You’d have more of a sense of gravity, reality,
If you picked up a textbook and dropped all your stars.
Stars in my eyes and the
Stars in the skies
Are the things that keep me pressing on.
Ambition and hope are all that I have,
So my life’s goal is to follow my heart’s song.
Your constraining, confining, creativity-killing rules,
Your pass-or-fail evaluating tools
Don’t leave me any room to express myself
Oh—and what’s worse, my mental health
Is dwindling, declining, with each new addition
To your standardized, calculated, categorized system.
Let me be me
Or let me be
But you’ve got to let me free.
“Free” is a relative term–
Free from work, free from learning?
Free to do just as you please?
Free from your responsibilities?
How could the world keep turning,
How could our daily lives keep churning
If you didn’t put in your fair share?
You see, creators like you aren’t rare.
You use words to cover the holes in society
It’s tough, but you keep on fighting
Pretend that even dirt shines like gold,
You say “antique” instead of “old”!
The outdoors? “Charming”.
Violence? “Disarming”, yes,
But all you really need
Is to turn off your TV
And pretend you didn’t see it
Good as new
Does that satisfy you?
Does the fact that your eyelids are shut change reality?
Could you fathom for an instant that maybe, maybe
Problems exist and we must confront them
In order to fix the wrongs we’ve done, then?
I find a strange poetry in that.
Survey, evaluate, repair, repeat.
In not using parental block, euphemisms, what have you
But in fixing the problem instead of ignoring it.
That’s how society could truly progress.
Progression is important, I agree,
But there is one small detail, one small key
That some people have the depth to see,
But your reality-oriented eyes don’t.
Society could not budge an inch
Without a pinch
It’s all about the fulcrum
At that moment when
In the fourth dimension
Frees the tension
And the grip-nip
Gnawing of the winter
Starts to splinter
Fractal fracture shift.
Phase change; days rain,
Ice melt drip.
It’s all about the pendulum
When the roiling energy
Tangentially brushes the Earth. Spring
Up Delta X
In a diamond spray
While the quantum blossoms multiply
By Spring Constant k.
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