CHADRON – Nearly 160 students from 16 Nebraska and South Dakota high schools attended Chadron State College’s Art Day Nov. 4. CSC students and faculty instructed sessions in drawing, printmaking, photography, crafts, mixed media, graphic design, and ceramics.
Art Professor Mary Donahue said she enjoyed seeing CSC students develop camaraderie.
“It’s great to see them all together wearing their Art Day T-shirts, and working together to lead the workshops. We see them talking with their fellow art students, some of whom they may just be meeting for the first time,” Donahue said.
Donahue said Art Day provides opportunities for students from smaller schools to see college level studios and have experiences like throwing clay on a wheel, using a dark room, or working in Photoshop.
CSC student McKensi Webel of Lincoln said leading a session in painting and mixed media gave her the chance to see the high schoolers’ passion for art.
“They are so talented and being able to help encourage them is so rewarding,” Webel said.
CSC student Christopher Wright of Alliance, Nebraska, has led sessions for two years. This year, he set up four still life arrangements that emphasized texture, form, highlight, and shadow. The students used pastels, charcoal, and graphite as their mediums. He credited Art Professor Laura Bentz with the idea to make the project fun for the high school students by asking each student to draw one or two objects from their table’s still life, pass the paper to a student at another table, and ask that student draw an item on his or her table.
“We emphasized that they take into consideration how to fill the space and what they might do to compliment what was already drawn on the paper,” Wright said. “I learned that a still life might seem boring to some, but why not make it fun by making it a collaborative project? Sharing our ideas made a unified composition.”
The session for regional art teachers this year was a video conference with Anne Alston and Linda Hilliar of the Nebraska Arts Council. Alston and HIlliar provided an overview of programs and grant opportunities available to PreK-12 schools and organizations including Schoolbus for the Arts, Artists in Schools/Communities.
Art teacher Millie Butler of Hemingford said a group of teachers stayed after the presentation and made plans to collaborate throughout the school year.
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