Students Processing Through Art


Photo Courtesy of: The Public Education Foundation

This is Taya Etzell’s image in the virtual art show.

Mallory Priest, Journalist

Taya Etzell entered her art piece on January 6th into the Public Education Foundation’s virtual art show. Etzell entered her piece because it was an assignment for her photography class, and she thought her piece had potential to be entered. 

The Public Education Foundation’s whole goal was to help students process their feelings through written and visual arts. The community art gallery is still hanging up students’ art pieces so the public can still view them virtually. This whole idea was brought up by some student interns.

“A team of student interns from West Career & Technical Academy, under the direction of their digital media teacher Chrissy Pavesich, curated the first of three virtual art exhibitions. They determined the theme, collected artist statements, and created the virtual exhibit,” states The Public Education Foundation.

Etzell’s picture took a couple of days to brainstorm because she wanted to make sure she included everything that had affected her and everyone in the world. The picture took multiple tries because she had to draw out each picture in the background, and she wanted to play around with different facial expressions. It also allowed her to think outside the box.

“This assignment did push me to think outside of the box because I wanted to do something different than everyone else so mine would stand out, and it was worth it,” explained Etzell.

All of the photos in the art show have a deep meaning and each photo’s explanation around the topic of 2020 and how it made people feel. Etzell’s photo means a lot to her because it is very moving and it shows the difficulties that everyone including herself went through.

There are 50 student entries in the art show and there will be 2 more virtual art exhibitions. Each topic will be different, but it will allow students to show off their amazing and inspirational art pieces. There were entries from lots of different CCSD high schools. 7 amazing masterpieces in the art show are from Shadow Ridge.

I was very excited when I found out that my photo was accepted! I felt that my hard work had paid off, and I am excited to see what other opportunities it will give me,” says Etzell.

Etzell’s excitement can be shared with many other students whose images were also accepted into the virtual art show. The 7 pieces from the Ridge all show how 2020 has affected each student differently.