Bringing you the latest at Langley

The Saxon Scope

Bringing you the latest at Langley

The Saxon Scope

Bringing you the latest at Langley

The Saxon Scope

Drawing for a Cause

Langley students participate in prestigious Fine Arts Competition

Created in 1923, the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards is a large player in the art scene, allowing teens from grades 7-12 from around the country to submit their art for showcase and judging. The competition opens around September 1st and lasts around early December 1, depending on the student’s region. 

Part of the competition’s prestige is that it gives students awards, such as a Gold and Silver Key. Students receiving a Gold Key are automatically admitted to the national level, where they are eligible for judging to receive a National Medal in the competition. 

Many Langley students have participated in this competition. Carol Ding, a senior, submitted her artwork in the drawing sections for judging in the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards, among the many different sections of Visual Arts it offers.

“Scholastic is a competition nationwide where you best work to light for judging,” Ding said. “But there’s different categories, like painting and sculpting.”

While Ding doesn’t remember exactly what she submitted, she believes showcasing her art for judging allowed development and confidence in herself as an artist.

“It challenged me,” Ding said. “It allowed me to put my artwork out in the world.”

Similarly, Alina He-Cheng, a senior at Langley High School, was able to also take part in the competition and get a taste of what the judges were looking for. She recognized the opportunity to be able to submit various forms of art.

“I think it was cool to have all those different kinds of categories for all those different kinds of art you can submit,” He-Cheng said. “It was nice having a range to choose from.”

He-Cheng also looks back on the time she submitted artwork to the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards as illuminating to the judges expectations for art submissions. Seeing the pieces that won awards were eye-opening for her.

“Things with meaning and a message is the kind of stuff that really gets recognized more, which makes sense, because there’s a level of complexity and depth to those artworks that makes them stand out,” He-Cheng said.

William Farnsworth, Langley Studio Art teacher, has taught many students who entered the contest. As someone who has observed his students participating for a wide length of time, he sees specific trends in what the judges look for. Many of them, Farnsworth notes, actually don’t depend on the meaning of the artwork as heavily as do they do the more skill-based areas of art.

“It depends more heavily on technique,” Farnsworth said. “I think it’s because judges can’t have students stand in front of them and explain their artwork, so they have to rely on technique to judge them.”

Whatever the case, the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards is an opportunity for Langley students involved in the Fine Arts showcase their art and experience being judged under a professional eye. 

Even though there is no guarantee that one student will be selected for a Gold Key and allowed to proceed to the national level, many students like Ding and He-Cheng have been able to take away something significant from the process. Developing as an artist, they believe, was the most important takeaway from the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards.