My name is Hannah Billings, I am a first-year medical student who runs a local cake pop business, Cake on a Stick LLC.
From hobby to business . . . Cake on a Stick began as a creative outlet, paired with a passion for baking. After trial and (many) errors, techniques were perfected, and delicious masterpieces were made. While the process of baking is enjoyable, the real fun was in sharing with family and friends. And thanks to the encouragement and supportiveness of the early taste-testers, Cake on a Stick was born and it’s poppin’!
“Alexis Yakes is from Denver, Colorado. She was a concert pianist as a child, and attended Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts, as an undergraduate majoring in Contemporary Writing and Production. She then attended New York University in New York City, New York, in order to obtain prerequisites necessary for Medical School through the Post-Baccalaureate program. She has worked multiple career trajectories including personal training/fitness instructing, assistant producing/radio programming, and bartending. She is currently a Doctorate of Medicine candidate class of 2023 at the University of Kansas. When not studying, she can be found hanging out with her two dogs, Gibson and Bunny, the loves of her life.”
“I have always enjoyed sketching and art, but it wasn’t until my fourth year of medical school that I felt like I had the inspiration and time to dedicate to it. I started drawing again to better understand the anatomy I encountered in surgical cases. Once my away rotations were over I decided to explore different mediums. I went from the comfort of pencil and paper to ink drawings and then digital drawings. I have started a collection of my anatomical sketches on instagram @scalpel.and.sketches “
I have always loved drawing upon nature for inspiration for my artwork, especially for my pieces in metalsmithing. The tension between the organic, pleomorphic elements found in nature and the rigid, unyielding structure of metal is an idea I like to explore in my work. This piece, titled “Enter the Kraken” (derived from Bruce Lee’s iconic movie “Enter the Dragon”), is a sequel to a vase I had made a semester prior, but this was an extra challenge to myself: to make a smaller, more lifelike version of an octopus that is free standing.
My name is David Brown and I am an M1 who runs a small photography business, DB Photo Co. I started photography in high school for fun with taking photos of my friends here and there. My freshman year at Kansas State, I got a job as a university student photographer which really allowed my skill to increase as I worked under two very phenomenal photographers. With some guidance, I was able to start DB Photo Co. and begin developing a portfolio as I took on senior photos, graduation photos, engagements/proposals, and weddings over the past four years. Some of my favorite memories have been from behind the camera, and I hope to keep doing photography alongside medicine in the future!
For me, cooking has always been a form of creative expression. It’s unique in that there are set guidelines that one can and should follow, but variation and combination of these guidelines allow for an almost infinite number of possibilities. As a skill, it provides people the opportunity to grow and create in a very forgiving and approachable way. Since my first year of undergrad, I have used cooking as a way to relieve stress. Alongside its practical function of producing food, I have found that cooking is an incredible way to learn more about culture and history all over the world. There is always some new technique to learn or some new recipe to perfect, and that process is something I really appreciate.
The Doctor’s Notes is a musical group made up of first year and second year medical students from the University of Kansas Medical School. These students perform A cappella songs at many school events. The group will perform the song “Hallelujah” at the Willed Body Ceremony as tribute to the people who gifted their bodies to be used to further our medical education.
Having been a cross-disciplinary student studying both biology and visual arts, my undergraduate work sought to combine the two interests, which can be seemingly contradictory but also surprising similar. Most of my work is inspired by nature; the natural world around us is incredibly beautiful, with all the different forms and colors, and it is also scientifically fascinating because every element exists for a purpose and is a specific adaptation. This contrast and tension between rigidity and fluidity is an idea that underlies the pieces I make in the metalsmithing studio, in an effort to find a balance between the two.
“A Crowning Achievement” truly serves as a culmination of my undergraduate artistic career, twisting together realism and fantasy, and striking a balance between delicate and aggressive. It had always been a dream to make a headpiece and this piece specifically was inspired by the costuming and design of the Lord of the Rings series. The making of crown was a challenge to myself: to make something as flat and lifeless as metal sheets into something that was three-dimensional and organic. So, this crown is made almost entirely of thin copper sheets that has been hammered into hollow branch forms; these branches were soldered, hammered again, cleaned, electroformed, patina-ed, and finally gold-leafed.
“My project is exclusively made of stained plywood, glued on top of one another and then cut down into, and finally sanded to created the smooth valleys and plateaus. This really cut into the costs.
When I first started medical school, I found myself disappointed at the lack of creative outlets it offered me. We were constantly expected to absorb, absorb, absorb, and then regurgitate knowledge. We exclusively took in information, never creating anything for ourselves. I decided to find my outlet elsewhere, via smaller wood sculptures and projects.
Sculpting doesn’t apply directly to my future life as a physician, but instead balances it. In the world of medicine, I’m constantly compared and evaluated against a “standard” or a “correct answer” or even my fellow peers’ performance. In the world of sculpture it’s just whatever I want to do, complete freedom.”