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The Student Voice of Prosper High School

Eagle Nation Online

The Student Voice of Prosper High School

Eagle Nation Online

Hundreds of students compete in regional art competition, 12 advance to state

Art department boasts high scores at VASE, students move on to state competition
This+collage%2C+made+in+Canva%2C+combines+some+of+the+artworks+advancing+to+the+state+VASE+competition+into+one+image.+Twelve+PHS+artists+will+travel+to+San+Marcos%2C+TX+to+compete+with+their+artworks+on+April+26+and+27.+At+least+one+student+will+be+competing+in+each+of+the+four+divisions.
Tess Gagliano
This collage, made in Canva, combines some of the artworks advancing to the state VASE competition into one image. Twelve PHS artists will travel to San Marcos, TX to compete with their artworks on April 26 and 27. At least one student will be competing in each of the four divisions.

Hundreds of students gathered in the Memorial High School cafeteria on Saturday, Feb. 24, waiting for their turn to be interviewed by judges for the 2024 regional VASE competition. Each student had the opportunity to enter up to two works, and all together PHS students brought 232 artworks to the competition. 194 of those works earned a score of four, the highest score an artwork can receive at VASE. 13 works by 12 PHS artists were also selected to advance to the state VASE competition, which will be held in San Marcos, Texas on April 26 and 27. The VASE competition is divided into four divisions based on the number of high school art courses a student has taken, and only the top 10% of artworks in each division advance to state.

Sophomore Ruy Liao’s piece “A Cat in a New Environment” advanced to state VASE in Division I. “I was reading about how when cats are in a new environment, being in a cardboard box makes them feel more safe and comfortable,” Liao said. “I feel like sometimes humans are like that too — but life can be so much more complex outside of that box than you originally thought.”

 

With her piece “Have Faith,” freshman Johannah Paolo advances to state VASE in Division I. “This piece is about me learning to trust,” Paolo said. “It showed me that I need to trust in my artistic ability and also trust in my faith — just being able to trust that maybe I’m not perfect at things now, but it’s all a process.” Paolo is in Aimee Hinshaw’s Honors Art I class and is a member of National Art Honor society.

 

Both entries by senior Bryan Nam advance Division I state VASE competition. Pictured above is his first entry, an oil painting titled “Dreaming.” “This piece is about my struggle in putting my thoughts onto paper,” Nam said. “Sometimes I wish I could just spill all my thoughts right out from my brain onto paper.”

 

Senior Bryan Nam’s second piece, advancing to state in Division I is a graphite drawing titled “Indianapolis.” Despite his limited art experience, Nam is the only PHS artist with two pieces advancing to state. “I decided to use graphite over any other medium because I viewed this photo as an old memory, with everything desaturated like those old photos, ” Nam said. “I took this photo when I was in Indianapolis for a band competition. I had a good time drawing the image as I was thinking about the wonderful moments I had in Indianapolis.”

 

3D piece “Blooming Toilet” by sophomore Olivia Young advances to state in Division I. “This artwork represents my creativity and imagination because of the fact that there won’t be many toilets in an art competition,” Young said. “I wanted to make people question, ‘Why a toilet?’ Even a toilet can be pretty and have growth.”

 

Sophomore Olivia Crooks advances to state VASE in Division II with her piece, “A World of Specks.” Crooks used a technique called pointillism to illustrate her views about the relationship between individuals and society. “The first thing people notice when they look at my art is a picture of a snake,” Crooks said. “But, when you look closer, you see the dots that make up the image.”  Crooks used this dotting technique, known as pointillism, as a way to  illustrate  the relationship between individuals and society. “There are billions of people on this earth and I am just one,” Crooks said. “It can make you feel insignificant. One dot on this paper may not seem like anything, but, when it’s surrounded by other tiny dots, it makes something beautiful.”

 

“Carve” by sophomore Gray Haviland advances to the state competition in Division II. They created the piece over the span of several months, using acrylic paint, wood panels, and unconventional materials such as popsicle sticks. “In day-to-day social interactions, I feel that I only carve out a small space for self expression,” Haviland said. “I leave behind a mask that I have carved with my fear of rejection”

 

Sophomore Devi Chanda advances to state VASE in Division II with her 3D piece, “Nature on a Vase.” “My love and fondness for nature led me to make this unique piece,” Chanda said. “I wanted to unravel the beauty of nature through a vase.”

 

With a sculpture made of clay and wire, sophomore Emily Zhang advances to state in Division II with her 3D piece, “Restoration.” Zhang is in art teacher Brian Pierce’s sculpture class. “This artwork represents growth and repair,” Zhang said. “Phoenixes are known for their ability to be reborn.”

 

Junior Jayden Smith advances to Division IV state VASE with their 3D piece “Foliage to a Fox.” Smith is in Brian Pierce’s AP 3D Art class.  “The purpose of my piece is to show that death does not mean the end, but rather a new beginning,” Smith said. “In this case, the life of the fox finishes, but a lot of nature and foliage grows.”

 

This portrait by senior Adrianna Liu, titled “Bella” advances to state VASE in Division IV. Liu created this piece with colored pens and a technique called hatching. She is in Violet Delaney’s AP Drawing class as well as Aimee Hinshaw’s Drawing and Design class. “I really wanted to try something different,” Liu said. “Most people use black and white but I did red and blue for the hatching to give it some dimension.”

 

Senior Carolina Miao advances to state VASE competition in Division IV with her oil painting titled, “River Walk.” Miao is in Violet Delaney’s AP Drawing class. “I did this piece because I want to capture the memorable moments of life and beautiful landscapes I have seen,” Miao said. “I wanted to use the idea of impressionism, which adds colors from my imagination and emphasizes the brushstrokes.”

 

Junior Erin Young advances to state VASE in Division IV with her colored pencil piece, “Mirrored Lives.” Young is in Violet Delaney’s AP Drawing class, and this piece is part of her AP portfolio. “I just thought of yin and yang and the colors red and blue so I had the faces flipped towards each other,” Young said. “I colored it in with alcohol markers and then colored pencil on top.”

 

Many PHS students also earned medals for high scores on their artwork, although they did not get selected to advance to state. The gallery below shows artwork by some of the medalists.

*some of the quotes that appear in this article have been pulled from students’ intent forms, written explanations that are entered along with their piece.

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Tess Gagliano
Tess Gagliano, Executive Design Editor
Tess Gagliano is a Senior at Prosper High School and currently serves as an Executive Design Editor for Eagle Nation Online and Eagle Nation Times. Outside of school she enjoys reading, writing, and working on her own art. She also plays club volleyball, makes jewelry, and helps take care of foster cats and other animals on the family farm. Awards and Honor Societies: National Honor Society National Art Honor Society Quill and Scroll 2023 UIL Ready Writing: All Tournament Best TAJE 2024 Best in Texas Entertainment Review, Honorable Mention TAJE 2024 Best in Texas News Magazine Cover, Honorable Mention 2023 ATPI Fall Photo Contest: 3rd Place Photostory 2023 Quill & Scroll Finalist / News Magazine Front Page Design  
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