UT student artists help make campus brighter place with classroom drawings

Kiernan McCormick, Life & Arts General Reporter

On the first Monday of his calculus class, Yun Jang started an iconic tradition: making chalkboard drawings of Marvel superheroes before each lecture in Patton Hall.

Jang, a mechanical engineering sophomore, said he started the drawings out of an appreciation for Marvel comics and movies and as a way to use his free time.

“There isn’t any particular reason why I draw (pictures of Marvel superheroes) in the classroom,” Jang said. “I like to practice my skills and since I have a lot of spare time, I might as well practice them.”

Jang’s drawings caught the attention of his classmates, one of whom made a Reddit post about them on Sept. 14. Spurring upvotes and comments both on the internet and in person, Jang and other small time student artists like him keep their peers engaged and in high spirits with their amusing and impressive works.

Lizette Wong, an electrical engineering and jazz piano junior, said she made the post because she found the detail of Jang’s drawings impressive and fun. 

“(The drawings) gave me something to look forward to every time I went to class,” Wong said. “I was like, ‘Oh, I wonder what will be on the blackboard,’ so I actually started attending class more instead of online.”

Jang said he didn’t know his drawings caught the attention of his classmates until he found out about the Reddit post later on. 

“As an artist, although I’m not professional, I feel quite honored when other people say that they enjoy my work,” Jang said. “This has been a huge inspiration for me as well — a mood booster.”

Like Jang, Larenz Harrington, an arts and entertainment technologies sophomore, said he also likes to show his unique artistic talent around campus. 

Harrington said he started doing drawings on whiteboards and chalkboards in empty classrooms in buildings, such as the Gates Dell Complex and Patton Hall, last year. He said the subject of his drawings depend on the medium he uses, but he typically draws whatever idea first comes to his mind.

Harrington posts TikToks about his campus drawings. There, he shares charcoal sketches, chalkboard art and piano renditions. He said he intends for his account to showcase the variety of his skills. 

“My TikTok in general is for my art to be out there, and for people to see what they want to see and interpret it how they want to,” Harrington said. 

Harrington said he hopes his campus drawings create a happy distraction for students from the stress of school. 

“Sometimes I like to make art for people to see that it’s still college,” Harrington said. “Everything doesn’t have to be too serious. I feel like my job is to remind people that it’s still a fun place.”