On Thursday, Nov. 7, high school art students in Keller ISD participated in the third annual KISD Art Contest. The event was held at the KISD Education Center, and students were given two hours to complete their piece in one of the following categories: painting, drawing, sculpture, or digital design. Points were awarded for the top four artworks in each category, and the highest-scoring cumulative points determined the winning school. Timber Creek was the overall champion in the competition.

Senior Gracie Baker placed first in the varsity painting category. When asked whether she had competed before, Baker explained that she was handpicked by the art department to represent TCHS for the third time.

“We get nominated to compete by the art teachers, so Mrs. [Camille] Kerr and [Marcelene] Gardner picked the people for the varsity painting group. [It was] my third year doing the competition,” Baker said.

The artist went on to share the meaning behind the piece that she painted at the contest.

“The prompt was the word ‘overcome’ so I tried to convey the success of overcoming an illness,” she shared.

Baker shared that she was thrilled to hear that she had performed so highly after years of placing such high expectations on herself, and that art has given her more faith in her abilities.

“I was really excited to hear that I had won. I haven’t placed in the past years, so this year I was determined to just let go of the pressure of winning and I made something I was actually much more proud of than in the past when I was worried,” she explained. “Art is a huge part of my life so having the opportunity to compete and do well with the school has given me a really good confidence boost and pushes me to keep creating.”

Visual Art teacher Chrissy Fitch believes students such as Baker stand out to judges in competitions, because art students on campus are not only gifted, but are provided with great instruction. Fitch was expecting a good outcome for Falcons at the KISD Art Contest.

“I was extremely excited about the outcome of the art competition, but was not overly surprised. TCHS has a tremendous tradition in visual arts and we expect to be successful,” Fitch said. “Our students really enjoy art and they are extremely talented. [Also], my colleagues in the art department at TCHS are truly incredible. They inspire me, as well as the students to reach our maximum potential.”

Fitch elaborated on the fact that art is not only about winning awards. Similarly to Baker, she has seen firsthand how having a creative outlet has influenced her students in a positive way.

“The success that [students] have had has assisted in helping them to be confident in other areas of their lives. The self discipline [it] takes to finish a project helps them to gain habits that will impact their future,” Fitch said. “Many students are able to find a niche in the art classes that makes school more exciting to them.”

Be sure to congratulate all the TCHS artists that competed and placed in the KISD Art Contest. The full list has been included below. May they keep creating as a way to not only represent the school, but to express themselves in visually fascinating ways.

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