Kids show their artistic side

Youth Art Month at the Carroll Arts Center showcases creativity of county middle and elementary school students

February 25, 2007|By Ellie Baublitz | Ellie Baublitz,Sun Reporter

When Lukas Crumbaugh, 8, was looking for inspiration for his Youth Art Month project, he turned to the medieval era.

The Cranberry Station Elementary third-grader created a story to bring knights to life for the exhibit, which is on display at the Carroll Arts Center.

Crumbaugh drew an illuminated "L" featuring a sea monster attacking a moat and knights in the tower shooting at the monster.

"At the bottom is a bunch of thorn bushes, so to get to the tower they have to go through the thorn bushes," Lukas said. "A dragon is coming from the other side."

Lukas said he got the idea for the illuminated letter from stories he read.

"I can draw really good 18th-century ships, too, especially frigates and galleons," he said.

He may have gotten his artistic talent and love of medieval history from his grandmother, British artist Lucille Kerns, who lives in Westminster.

"I'm just so proud of him," she said as he described his picture at a reception for the exhibit.

The annual exhibit features hundreds of works from every elementary and middle school in the county, said Cristina Gruss, a fine-arts resource specialist for the public schools.

"It's a collection of work that represents their work thus far," Gruss said. "Each school has tried to represent a body of work from every grade."

Picking what to show was not easy for the art teachers, several of whom attended receptions held Wednesday and Thursday for the exhibit.

"It's been hard culling from 350 students and representing all we've done," said Charles Carroll Elementary art teacher Mary Mark Munday, who had 22 works of student art in the exhibit.

Her students showed samples of Haboku, a Japanese art style that features splashing paint on paper, and shaped landscape paintings.

Other schools displayed ceramic masks, cut paper mosaics, chalk drawings, dream catchers, yarn and paper designs, animal figures, portraits, watercolors, perspective drawings of buildings and city scenes, floral paintings, still lifes, folded paper, pop art and a few small 3-D works.

Cranberry Station Elementary School art teacher Jessica Belschner had one of the largest displays, with 48 pieces picked from her 500 students, including three works from a set of twins and their brother.

Fifth-graders Becca and Rachel Barnett, 10, and their brother, third-grader Andrew, 8, each had a different type of art in the exhibit. Becca made a felt creation of a panda climbing up a branch in front of bamboo stalks and leaves.

Rachel Barnett created a Mexican tin work of the sun, while Andrew did a paper mosaic of a praying mantis.

"These guys love every aspect of art," said their mother, Betsy Barnett, who is painting again.

Cranberry Station's exhibit included a self-portrait by fourth-grader Bethany Brusio, 9, who drew herself wearing a Valentine's Day outfit and surrounded by pink and purple hearts and snowflakes.

In the hallway outside the upstairs gallery, where middle school art was hung, Kate Dedmon described her City at Night, a colorful crayon and tempera drawing of city buildings in front of snow-capped mountain peaks and a bridge.

"The teacher gave us shapes we had to pick from and we had to put them together," said Kate, 12, a sixth-grader at New Windsor Middle School.

Nearby, Sandy Rohwein and her children admired the creations.

"It goes to show what the art teachers get the kids to do," she said.

Her daughter Heather, 8, a second-grader at Elmer Wolfe Elementary School, showed a pop-up page of a book.

Susan Williamson, visual arts coordinator for the Carroll County Arts Council, loves the children's art.

"It's fantastic," she said.

The elementary and middle school exhibit continues through March 8 at the arts center, 91 W. Main St. The high schools will have their own Youth Art Exhibit from Saturday to April 19 at Carroll Community College, with an opening reception from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. March 4.

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