The Right Brain Initiative


Artist Details

Carl Sweets


Book this artist using the Residency Request Form


Through my years of teaching, with students at various ages and levels, several goals emerge:

  • I aim to help students experience the world more richly, beyond the work of textbooks and inert facts, guiding them to become sentient visual artists.
  • Through posing questions, examining hypothesis, and exploring alternative perspectives I want my students to consider how things might otherwise be.
  • To share their ideas and support others in developing their own propositions.
  • To assist organizing of their thoughts and ideas into a visual form.
  • To foster appreciation of diverse subject matter, and the understanding of significant concepts.
  • Value and expand on their present knowledge to produce a high quality of work.


Carl Sweets is a multi-disciplinary artist working in Photography, Video, Stop-motion, Graphic Design, Drawing, and alternative digital processes and softwares. Carl holds a MFA in Photo, Video, and New Media from Pratt Institute, a BFA in Photo and Digital Media from Columbia College Chicago, and a BS in Applied Mathematics and Computer Science from Kent State University. He has 10 years of teaching experience in Chicago and Portland and most recently served as the Education Director of Newspace Center for Photography


2D Visual Arts,






Working with 7th and 8th grade students studying literary devices and terms, Carl created a curriculum that allowed students to express literature lessons through visual examination. After studying a literary device in the classroom, such as repetition, the students were challenged to find and photograph a visual representation of repetition in their community and surroundings. The students created both written and visual poems. Students will learn to use the literary devices and the written word to describe their photographic and visual investigations. The students then created video slideshows of their photographs while reading their poetic explorations.


6th grade students studying political systems and elections were given the task of creating their own grass roots Political Party and holding a mock election. Students were exposed to the history of Politics including party philosophies, issues, and adverts. Working individually, students made lists of ideals, beliefs, and political issues most important to them. In groups, the students very quickly learned to compromise Рdrafting a Political Agenda. The groups created a Party Name, a Party Philosophy, a Party Symbol, and finally nominated Presidential and Vice-Presidential candidates to represent their Party. Each Party made a commercial using green-screen video to talk about their Party’s Political Agenda. After viewing the student-made commercials, all students had an opportunity to vote for their Party of choice.



I work primarily as a digital media artist. Young people are exposed to digital media daily – on phones, computers, or through adverts. While I agree that digital media, especially social media, can be a distraction from learning – the objective is to show young people how to harness digital media as a tool for creativity. Instead of asking young people to google an answer – ask them to use digital media to create a solution.


The connections between digital media and school curriculum are endless. Math and Science are the basic building blocks of digital media tools. Young people can use math to determine the resolution and image size of a digital image. They can use science to create a stop motion animation of the basic building blocks of life – compounds, elements, and mixtures. There is common vernacular between literacy and visual understanding – and digital literacy can be exploited to create language skills. Beyond textbook and classroom lessons – digital media is a tool for self-expression. Digital media allows young people to teach me, their teachers, peers, and their community something about them, their experiences, and in their own voice. Exposing young people to digital media ignites passion in next generation of creative thinkers.



$60/hour classroom teaching

$30/hour research, prep, planning and reflection meetings

No travel fees for schools within 6 miles of my home. $.55 per mile more than 6 miles.




Questions? Contact your Right Brain Coach.


503-225-5900 x229




Brad Parker

Assistant Principal


Vernon Schoo

K - 8

David Schell

Art teacher

503.262.4844 ext. 4102

Riverdale High School

9 - 12

Arnold Aprill

Principal Investigator


Radical Compliance Arts and Learning Laboratory

FAQ Arts