When fifty-five artists and writers meet

Vermont Studio Center, Johnson, VT (1 month)

Since graduating college, it was my goal to attend the internationally-renowned Vermont Studio Center in Johnson, VT. Three years later, I was accepted into this prestigious art residency with a scholarship award.

“The frontier is both outside and inside.”

—  Michael McClure

Founded in 1984, VSC is the largest international art residency program in the United States. A long list of artists I admire attend this program, a testament of their shared talent and commitment to art. VSC is known far and wide for attracting talent from around the world, building a global network of artists and writers. Now, I get to see what it is like from the insider’s perspective.


Upon arrival, I get my first dose of real maple syrup poured over a hot breakfast before convening with other artists at the airport. We gather up and drive to VSC’s campus, where fifty-five artists and writers meet for the first time. We are in a snowy paradise, dragging our luggage to our assigned cabins blinking away snowflakes and shaking hands. We made it!

Without even trying, we all naturally conform to a productive schedule structured around mealtime. We meet at the dining hall as a group three times a day then scatter to our studios for hours in between. The energy is buzzing as we get to know one another. Swapping stories and paint brushes, we begin our new creations simultaneously.


Artist dart to the studios carrying supplies under puffy coats, while writers pass with computer bags and notebooks. Our week is filled with name swapping, project planning, snow stomping, yoga classes, art openings, and a series of artist talks and readings to get things going. It is clear that each person here made a commitment to themselves and to this program to make the most of it. And so it begins!