Jadwiga Romanowska

Jadwiga Romanowska

Design is one of the highest expressions of human creativity, but it should not only talk to the mind but also touch the heart. Designers make maps for places that don't yet exist. It is an act of inventing forms that will satisfy all the needs, mental and emotional, of the user. Jadwiga Romanowska , Interior Design Instructor , The Art Institute of Charleston, a branch of The Art Institute of Atlanta

Was there a defining moment when you knew you were destined to become a creative professional?

My greatest inspiration and influence came from watching my mother at work. She was a great artist and stage designer. She never repeated herself in her creative work. I spent hours watching her paint, and I was completely mesmerized by her work.

How do you weave your professional background into the classroom experience?

My international training and experience allow me to share wider perspective on art and design as they’re currently applied in the real world.

What class assignment exemplifies your approach to teaching and mentoring?

Each of my class assignments illustrates my approach to teaching and mentoring. I’m very passionate about design, and I love to teach it. My goal is to instill that same passion in the next generation of designers.

How do you inspire your students to push themselves beyond their own perceived limits?

I encourage students to ask themselves, “What if?” It’s important to not know something at the outset. There’s always excitement when you begin something new, and I want students to pull that back a bit, to not answer design questions too quickly. I think it makes my studio classes unpredictable, fun, and challenging.

How does collaboration contribute to students’ success—particularly when students from various programs work together?

I’ve always believed there’s no difference between the basic creative vision of the fine artist, graphic designer, fashion designer, industrial designer, interior designer, and architect. Any opportunity that students from diverse design programs have to work together on a project is enriching for everyone.

What’s the most important thing you impart to students to help them succeed in class and the real world?

Practice your exercises and be patient. Learning takes time. Baryshnikov could jump 10 feet in the air because he did his exercises.

What’s the most critical advice you would offer any student embarking on a creative career?

Don't be afraid of taking risks.

Anything else you’d like to share?

Designers make maps for places that don't yet exist.