This Friday, Creston:Arts will present the work of six Creston High School seniors.
The diverse body of work includes ceramics, paintings, drawings, apparel, digital and mixed-media art by senior independent art students Michelle Bloyd, Ashley Cardenas, Levi Eblen, Audrey Fyock, Itzayanna Rubio and Sarah Waigand.
Creston High School Art Teacher Bailey Fry-Schnormeier said each independent art student was challenged over the fall semester to come up with their own projects, map out their plan for the semester, select what projects they wanted to complete, create a time frame for each project and come up with supplies for their projects.
Aside from their own creativity and imagination, each student researched up and coming or classical artists to learn new processes and draw inspiration from.
Cardenas said exploring art has been the most self-prevailing exercise in high school.
“The practice and freedom to try new things has expanded not only my ability, but the way I look at art,” she said.
This year, Cardenas said she was “granted an opportunity” to take her three-dimensional artwork to a new level.
“These projects proved that my ability is a little more than what I thought it was and helped build and rediscovered passion and enthusiasm that has wavered over the past couple of years.”
Cardenas is currently researching a future career in film or performing arts.
Through her experiences as a volunteer, Bloyd said she has had the opportunity to meet and help people from all walks of life.
“I was able to help them and learn to understand them,” said Bloyd, “... to see the beauty of each person and their life story.”
Bloyd hopes her art will have a similar impact on those observing her work.
“To me, art is allowing others to see my thoughts,” said Bloyd. “...artwork should make you think differently than you normally would. It personally comforts me once I get my thoughts out.”
This fall, Bloyd will be attending School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) with the help of a merit scholarship she received from SAIC for her art and academic success. Bloyd will major in fine art with an emphasis in education.
Creston Chamber of Commerce 2013 Youth of the Year winner Levi Eblen continues to help others in the art department at Creston High School.
“He is my right-hand man,” Fry-Schnormeier said. “He is always mentoring students. Kids know to ask him or to go to him. And, if he sees someone struggling, he will always lend a hand.”
At CHS, Eblen has participated in student government, Future Business Leaders of America, iBelong, Appalachian Service Project, football, soccer and has served as a Creston Chamber of Commerce representative.
This fall, Eblen will play football for Simpson College, where he will work on an art education degree.
“My plan is to become an art teacher,” Eblen said. “I was not seriously interested until freshman year with Mrs. Fry.”
Fyock said she is drawn to creating more organic art pieces.
“I love art that flows and relates to nature,” she said. “My art is almost always natural, organic-looking and related to something of nature.”
Despite pursuing a degree in biomedical engineering at Iowa State in the fall, Fyock said she will always create art.
“It is my passion and a way for me to express myself,” said Fyock.
Fyock said, when it comes to art, each person is unique and special and has their own techniques.
“Art enhances our community, because, it makes it rich, creative, and fresh,” said Fyock. “Art deepens and diversifies a community, as well as unifies it.”
Itzayanna Aritzhail Rubio
Rubio, a National Honor Society member, will be showing a self-portrait created in a pop-art style and bright water-color paitings.
“I am very drawn to art with bright colors and pieces with a lot of contrast,” said Rubio. “ I like looking at things that pop.”
At CHS, Rubio runs cross country, participates in winterguard, soccer and theater.
In the fall, Rubio will be attending Drake University, where she will study law.
“I want to help people learn their rights and have the ability to defend themselves.”
For Rubio, art is important because “it ignites creativity and it’s an enjoyable way to create new things and develop new ideas.”
Aspiring fashion designer Sarah Waigand has already demonstrated her ability and love of art through her clothing.
Waigand, who will be studying fashion at Iowa State University this fall, will be showcasing some of her fashion sketches and handmade dresses.
One semi-formal dress featured displays the work of a future couture professional, complete with a satin-like lining, lace overlay, a pocket, hidden zipper and hook and eye closures.
“Sewing is said to be a lost art, but for me, it is my future, said Waigand.
The public is invited to the opening of Super Six Seniors art exhibit 6 to 8 p.m. Friday at Creston:Arts gallery, 116 W. Adams St. This event is free admission and all ages are welcome to attend.
Prior to the show, Upper Crust Culinary Creations, 201 W. Adams St., will be hosting “Friday Night Fare” — a culinary tasting of new menu items. This week, owners Christy Whited and Cynthia Wolf will be making lemon-filled pavlovas and cannoli, an Italian pastry filled with sweet cream and dipped in chocolate bits.
After the art opening, Creston:Arts and Adams Street Espresso will be hosting an open mic night. Poets, singers, musicians and performers of any kind are welcome to take to the mic. Sign up begins at 7:30 pm at Adams Street Espresso, 213 W. Adams St. Open mic is 8 to 9:30 p.m.