Mara Durkin, Zoe Potamianos, and Meghan Evans
Nearly 70 Jamesville-DeWitt High School students demonstrated their skill in the arts by entering and winning gold in the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards. An awards ceremony was held for gold and silver key winners on Jan. 11 at Onondaga Community College.
Students may submit more than one piece to the contest, as did many students from J-DHS. Junior Arysa Lux submitted two pieces and won two gold keys for “Grace” and “Rippled Afternoon.” Sophomore Lily Dougherty also submitted two pieces, receiving an honorable mention as well as a gold key. “I made a piece using charcoal which received an honorable mention along with a piece of giraffes because they are my favorite animal,” said Dougherty.
Many of the art pieces that were submitted take over five months to make and although the process is long and can be tough, the students have teachers to help them. “It took me a little less than seven months to finish my art piece, even with the help of Mr. Wenzel,” said senior Sarina Alexander. For Lux, it took her six to eight months to create one piece with the help of Mr. Benedict, Mr. Wenzel, and Mr. Brodsky. Senior Payton Riley made a ceramic plate over the course of four months, which won a gold key.
Junior Mark Davis submitted two pieces which took over a year. After all of this hard work he earned a gold key and a silver key. “Even though I worked very hard, I was still surprised and happy that I got rewarded for my art,” said Davis.
Photos are also entered into the Scholastic competition. Freshman Scott Reeves received a silver key for his photo of a lamp “with neat shadows.” He enjoys art and will continue taking art classes. “I would like to do something involving art in the future since it runs in the family. My sister is an artist at Syracuse University,” said Reeves.
Sophomore Sophie Clinton had a special piece which took her over a year to create. Her gold key art piece was inspired by refugees. Senior Sarah Pritts was inspired by a picture of her friend to create a gold key-winning piece titled “Sprinkles and Smiles.” While many have their art pieces planned out, artists like Riley, begin not knowing if it will turn out good enough for the contest. She was originally making a ceramic plate for a friend and before she knew it she was rewarded with a gold key, she said.
Many art students have been creating art for a long time, and plan to continue in the future. Alexander has created art since she can remember and next year she will be attending The Rochester Institute of Technology to major in graphic design. “I’m really excited. I’ve wanted to be a graphic designer since middle school,” said Alexander. Others have different plans for their future. “I have been doing art for three years now, but I do not have any interest with doing it in the future,” said Lux.
Senior Malik Larkin has only been taking art for one year but got a gold key on his graphic design piece. He is going to Mica University in Baltimore, Maryland where he will pursue his career in graphic design. He created his art piece in two days at a college course at Pratt University. “I started art because I realized how fascinating, relaxing and fun it is to use all of the colors and create my own work,” said Larkin.
All students who take an art elective can create pieces to be put into this contest. The Scholastic Art Awards is a great opportunity for high school and middle school students to participate in and hopefully get an award.