DeKalb High Takes 35 Awards in Art Show!
DeKalb High School students made a strong showing at the regional Scholastic Art and Writing competition in Fort Wayne — particularly senior Teddy Lepley.
DeKalb High took home 35 awards from the annual art show, against 62 other schools and among 2,889 total art entries. Winning pieces are sent on to New York City, where they will be judged in the national competition.
Scholastic show judges award gold and silver keys to their preferred pieces, as well as honorable mentions. All gold key pieces advance to nationals.
Photography teacher Jessica McNulty said each piece’s “voice,” rather than simply its technical skill, seems to hold the most weight among the show’s judges.
“It’s all about voice,” McNulty said. “It’s all about the feeling the viewer gets — how do you do that?”
Art teacher Amy Buchs said the total number of awards for DeKalb High is a little down from previous years. Compared to other schools’ award numbers, Buchs estimated DeKalb to be in the top six.
Buchs noted, however, that quantity isn’t necessarily a good measure for artistic success — Lepley, perhaps, being the exception.
Lepley alone received 11 awards at the show for his drawings and photography. His work was also selected in the prestigious portfolio competition.
“He’s a great student and puts lots of work into his projects,” McNulty said of Lepley. “He always has really innovative ideas.”
Lepley found success with his charcoal drawings, three of which received gold keys. He imitated a technique practiced by modern artist CJ Hendry that involves many little scribbles that, together, make up a complete image.
For his portfolio, he used a series of eight images, all created through a technique called “painting on.” Each piece is a photograph of a painted subject and background. Four of those pieces individually were awarded gold keys.
McNulty, who teaches Lepley in a photography class, said the series showcases the variety of Lepley’s talents.
“It’s not just one medium,” she said, noting how the series combines his painting skill with his understanding of light in photography.
Lepley’s portfolio, with nine of his individually awarded pieces, will go on for national consideration.
The work of six other DeKalb High School students will advance to the national competition, as well, including photographs by junior Katelyn Heins and Hope Kelham, a drawing by Caren Hernandez, a painting by Brenna Liddell and digital pieces by freshman Colton Oberholtzer and junior Madison Wehr.
Buchs highlighted the success of DeKalb freshmen in the show — New Tech students Oberholtzer, with his gold key piece, and Emma Beer, for her honorable mention photograph.
“With the high level of art competition, very few freshmen win awards,” Buchs said.
The Fort Wayne region is one of the best of the 85 regions in the country, she said, based on how the region generally performs in the national competition.
Winners of national awards will be announced March 16. If any DeKalb High students win, they will travel to New York for a ceremony.
All the regional award-winning art and writing entries will be on display at the Fort Wayne Museum of Art through April 5.
“Students love viewing the Scholastics exhibit, but it is today’s adults that need to tour it,” Buchs said. “Anyone who fears that the younger generation is beneath par would have a change of heart with one very enjoyable walk through our region’s student exhibit.”
Article from The Star
Written by Caleb Whitmer