Tag Archives: contest

Featured Student Artist: Zac Cutler

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art-num-861247385asZachary Cutler was a sixth grader taking classes at Magic of Art Studio when his art, Paradise, was selected as a national Top Ten Winner in our Spring 2013 art contest.

Zac Cutler“Magic of Art Studio has taught me many different skills in art.” Zac explains, “When I painted Paradise I was very ill. I wanted to create something colorful, in that part of my life, to cheer me up from my sickness. I was inspired by a beautiful painting I saw when I was looking through an art book. I saw a picture of two parakeets and wondered what it would look like in watercolor.  I am humbled and extremely honored for being chosen as one of the Top Ten Winners out of thousands of entries. Thank you for this award.”

In the future, Zac plans to focus on more 3 dimensional works of art.

To learn more about our national art contest, visit www.CelebratingArt.com.

Featured Student Artist: Meagan Wu

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WuMeagan-104 Meagan Wu is a 17-year-old rising senior at Canyon Crest Academy (CCA) high school in San Diego, California. She was selected as a Top Ten Winner for her colored pencil drawing, “Floral Beauty.”  Meagan’s art was chosen as one of the ten best in all of North America out of thousands of entries submitted. Her art was featured and published in our Spring 2013 anthology.

Meagan has developed as an aspiring young artist through recognition as a multitalented individual and intellectually engaged student. She has made many accomplishments both as an artist and musician who has performed in Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, and soloed with orchestras. Meagan recently attended the prestigious Marie Walsh Sharpe Art Foundation Summer Seminar at Colorado College with full scholarship as one of 60 gifted high school juniors nationwide, drawing and painting in the mountains under the daily tutelage of guest artists Don Coen and Barbara Friedman.

Meagan became avidly interested in art at a young age and has the National Youth Art Competition, California State PTA, San Diego County Fair Youth Art Show, Regional Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, and has had her artwork displayed in the San Diego Art Institute Museum of the Living Artist for three years. Her art consists of work from her AP Drawing class, free time, and CCA Envision Visual Arts (EVA) Conservatory under the guidance of Jessica Matthes, who says: “Meagan has been one of our star students in EVA day classes and in Conservatory.  She has an extremely high level of skill and creativity and especially excels at painting.  I have been lucky enough to have Meagan in several of my classes and she always goes above and beyond in every project”.

Meagan especially loves to draw human figures, and is inspired by music she listens to and history. She focuses on hyperrealism. “Art encourages me to observe beyond a superficial expression or subjective experience. It allows me to give it my own story, which is just as exciting as viewing the finished piece.”

We asked Meagan to share her inspiration as well as her future aspirations:

“I especially like ‘Floral Beauty‘ because it has so many intricacies: the flower petals’ delicate hues, the reflection in the golden vase, the countless folds of the tablecloth…It’s more than just flowers, and is quite mesmorizing. I drew ‘Floral Beauty’ because I am intensely engrossed by such fine details, and the setup/composition tested my hand with detail to the maximum. Somehow, working on minute elements doesn’t hurt my patience because I know how much such concentration contributes to the piece as a whole. Many people assume that realism like in still lives and portraits is undermined by photography. But I will always believe that realistic art undermines photographs, since artists use their own hands and a priceless determination to recreate reality. It is this diligence that illustrates just how precious art can be. It my delight in sketching even random things I see when travelling or at home that has made me so much keener. I hope that I can develop my art further by incorporating even more unique concepts and meaningful stories that cannot be told in words. I know that I will continue my artistic, and musical, pursuits after high school.”

art-num-130012843Meagan also loves to play the cello, and has demonstrated her musical skill by winning various competitions from the local to international level including 1st Prize in the H.B. Goodlin Scholarship Auditions, American Protégé International Music Talent Competition, MTAC Concerto Competition, MTAC VOCE Competition, Satori Strings Competition, International Youth Praise Competition; and 2nd Prize in American Fine Arts Festival International Concerto Competition and Era of Romantic Music Competition, Cal-Poly All-State Music Festival Solo Competition, Grossmont Music Scholarship Auditions, and more. Furthermore, Meagan loves to serve her community through performances at senior/retirement houses, nursing homes, libraries, and fundraising events. Meagan enjoys the challenge of balancing her art, music, and academics with equal devotion.

Congratulations, Meagan, on not only being selected as a Top Ten Winner for the Spring 2013 art contest, but for your incredible achievements in both the fine and performing arts. We wish you the best in your bright future, and thank you for inspiring others with your beautiful talent.

To learn more about our national art contest, visit www.CelebratingArt.com.

Featured Student Artist: Caroline Daigle

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Caroline is a 6th grader studying at LJ Alleman Middle School and Fine Arts Academy in Louisiana.  Her art, “Lucy“, was selected as a Top Ten Winner in the Spring 2013 national art contest.

559543_4570143852303_160391417_n“Lucy” is very special to Caroline, as she did a lot of research before painting her.  Caroline was dressing Lucy in attire from around the 1930s-1940s.  She researched shoes from that era and even a clock in that era.  Caroline used her creativity and wanted to have Lucy wear fishnet stockings and wanted to put a teddy bear with only one eye.  The painting was very well planned and took over three months for her to paint.

For the future, Caroline plans to make good grades, go to an art college, and be a famous artist.  Caroline is already selling prints of her original paintings.

To learn more about our national art contests, visit www.CelebratingArt.com.

Featured Student Artist: Audrey Besse

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art-num-961732810asAudrey was 11 years old when she created her art, “Baby Cougar Head“.  This painting was selected as a Top Ten Winner in our Spring 2012 national art contest for the 4-6 grade category.

Audrey lives in Dallas, Texas and has been creating art with different mediums all of her life.  Her painting was inspired by her Aunt Linda, who is a wildlife artist.  “For three years prior to my painting, I had been doing some hard Paint-by-Number sets.” Audrey explains, “Then I wanted something more challenging.  So Aunt Linda offered to show me how to do the same steps but from a blank gesso board.  We chose a 6 x 6 board to do my baby cougar head.”

In the future, Audrey plans to become an art teacher or own an art studio with one of her best friends.

To learn more about our national art contests, please visit www.CelebratingArt.com.

Featured Student Artist: Alex Zhong

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Alex Zhong Alex Zhong is a third grade student attending Camp Creek Elementary School in Georgia.  Once a week, Alex takes art lessons at Shijun Art Studio.  His art, “Magical Moment,” was selected as a Top Ten Winner in the Fall 2012 art contest.

“My inspiration for ‘Magical Moment’ came from a mixture of a movies and stories about mice stealing things and games. Since I love animals such as hamsters, mice, and dogs, I created a mouse using a unique way to get his food.” Alex explained, “My art teacher, Mrs. Shijun, has taught me a lot about art and drawing.”art-num-295887310

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Alex’s favorite activities are soccer, chess, drawing, and reading.  He plays piano every day and, of course, he is gifted at art.  At age 5 he started in a drawing class, and at age 7 he won his first art contest.  In the future, Alex would like to be a vet, a video game designer, or an artist.

To learn more about our national art contests, visit www.CelebratingArt.com.

Featured Student Artist: Keely O’Connor

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ImageKeely O’Connor is a 12-year-old student from Deferiet, NY, a very small town located approximately 45 minutes from the Canadian border. In her 12 short years she has become quite an accomplished young artist. From the time she was old enough to pick up a crayon, she has been drawing.

Keely was selected as a Top Ten Winner for the Spring 2012 art contest for her piece, “Skull & Corn“.  This means that her art was one of the ten best in the United States and Canada for her age division.

Keely entered her first art show in 2009 at the Jefferson County Fair and took home the 1st place blue ribbon. ImageIn 2010, she once again entered this yearly contest, only this time she entered two of her paintings, and took home 1st and 2nd place. Keely accomplished her goal of winning Best of Show for a painting in 2011. At just 11 years old, Keely won against all other entries in the Youth Division, which is open to all artists up to 18 years of age.

In the fall of 2011 Keely received permission to enter one of her drawings in the 63rd Annual North Country Art Councils Fine Art Show. TImagehis exhibit included 248 pieces of work from 77 artists. Keely was awarded 1st place for her drawing, and was the only child in the competition. Keely was approached early in 2012 by a local physician who wanted to commission a portrait from her. This was her first commission, since then she has been commissioned for another. In April 2012, one of Keely’s pieces was chosen as the People’s Choice winner for Artist’s World Magazine, and she was featured on the cover.  Keely took 1st place in the 2012 Jefferson County Fair for the same drawing she entered into our contest.  She also took 2nd place for her sculpture.
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Keely enjoys painting, sculpting and drawing. Nature scenes and animals are her loves right now. Keely takes private art classes with Bob Renaud, the local high school art instructor and a renowned artist in his own right. Keely looks forward to attending art school in the future, and to becoming a professional artist.

Congratulations, Keely, on all of your many accomplishments!  Keep up the incredible work and we hope to see more of your talent in the future!

To learn more about our national art contests, please visit www.CelebratingArt.com.

Featured Student Artist: Becca Parrish

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ImageBecca Parrish is a 15-year-old student at Trinity Christian Academy in Jacksonville, Florida.  Her art, “Laughter is the Greatest Medicine“, was chosen as a Top Ten Winner for the spring 2012 art contest.  This means that Becca’s art was selected as one of the ten best pieces of art in the entire United States and Canada for her age division.

ImageBecca’s hobbies include volleyball and basketball.  She likes to go to the beach and participate in the youth group at her church.  She became interested in art when she was in the second grade.

“I saw this photo of my cousin, Chaya, and fell in love with her expression. I wanted to catch the light and laughter in her eyes.” Becca explains, describing what inspired her to create her winning piece.  Becca’s future goals include going to an art school where she can develop her skills in the arts.

To learn more about our national art contests, please visit www.CelebratingArt.com.

Your Students Are Great

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I recently visited Washington DC and I took my family to the Smithsonian’s Art Galleries.  I love art and I enjoy looking at art.  When we left the Museum of Modern Art, my family also left more impressed with the art that is sent into our contests.  From the tens of thousands of students who participate in our art contest, we have all kinds of art sent in.  From modern abstract pieces to beautiful portraits.  It is our job to trim the entries down to what we feel are the top 25%.  It is not an easy task.  However, having seen a large painting in the Modern Art Gallery where I wasn’t sure if a 20 foot by 20 foot plain orange canvas with a black line slashed across the middle had been vandalized or if it was put there on purpose, or looking at a canvas with what looked like a representation of a dry erase board that had math formulas partly erased, I also realized that once you are established as an artist you have credibility and anything goes.

I know if we had accepted similar art and published it in our books, I would have received letters from teachers and students asking me to justify printing bad art when other students had entered better pieces that were not accepted.  I know art is subjective.  Modern art is supposed to push things to the edge, but seeing much of what is displayed, it makes me appreciate every piece that is sent to us.  Don’t get me wrong, I love modern art, but I also like to see art where I can feel the talent and struggle behind the art. Our books are a presentation of what our judges feel is good art.  Not everyone will agree with our decisions.  But we hope people will see the merit in what we chose for the publication.

For more information about our national art contests, please visit www.CelebratingArt.com.

What Is Originality?

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ImageIn starting the art contest in 2010, we have learned a lot about issues that we did not think would arise.  Each student is asked to send in an original work of art. But what does that exactly mean?  We have many teachers who have their students enter collages with images that come from other sources.  In these cases, the compilation of the images into an original form is the student’s creation.  However, as the original images are not the students,  we cannot have a contest winner or include in the book, an image that is copyrighted elsewhere.

We have also encountered students who will take a work such as “Starry Night” by Van Gogh and put their own interpretation onto the image.  If the image is now in public domain, then this is allowed if the student gives the original artist credit.  However, when an image is an exact copy then this is a greater challenge.  When a student sees a painting and then tries to make an exact copy, the work of putting the paint to the canvas is done by the student, but the work or imagination in creating the work is not.

We cannot be aware of every image.  Our official policy is that we love to see the work conceptualized by the student.  A work in the public domain can act as a starting point, but we hope the student will take it from there and add their own style to the piece.

To learn more about our national art contests, please visit www.CelebratingArt.com.

Make Being Published an Event!

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As the art judging is finished I always feel a bit guilty when I come across a school with an extremely high acceptance rate.  But sometimes a teacher is just great and his or her students create wonderful work.

There are a few schools that I look forward to judging. Palmer Catholic Academy in Ponte Vedra Beach in Florida is one of those schools who I find it a joy to see the students’ art.  Katie Corrigan has created a program there where her students create wonderful images.  Her elementary school watercolors are above grade level and just plain fun.

She sent an email this week with the following pictures and message:

ImageI can’t tell you how happy I am to see how many of our students “made the cut”! I’ve opted to wait for the postcards before sharing the news so they have something in hand to take home but it is a hard secret to keep. I couldn’t remember if I sent the attached photos to you upon receipt of last year’s good news and book arrival so I am attaching them now. I thought you might like to see some of the proud second grade artists with the book opened to their paintings. As the cards arrived shortly before the last day of school I had given letters to the students and used the cards to decorate our lobby bulletin board. The students took them home on the last day but had a chance to shine being recognized there first.Image
 
Thank you again for your wonderful book! We are thrilled to be a part of it.
 
With gratitude,
Katie Corrigan
Art Teacher
Palmer Catholic Academy

Thank you Katie.  In judging high schools that do work at a level much lower than your 4th graders, you are making a difference and changing lives.  We are glad to be here as a way to give your art an audience.  Hopefully being published provides an extra spark as we work together to create live long artists.
 
 Tom Worthen, Ph.D.