Art is still happening in Clackamas County…and where there’s art, there’s hope!

This month we wanted to highlight the artwork of young people in our community. Due to the pandemic, many events have been cancelled and delayed, but luckily there are some that have been able to move online.

In fact, our YAC Program Coordinator Courtney Rainwater was able to view beautiful pieces of art on display at the Clackamas Education Service District. These pieces were submitted from students all around the county from middle school to high school, including students who have participated in Youth Arts for Change classes.

Here is her experience interacting with the art for this year’s Clackamas ESD Student Art Show.

I was happy to be asked to judge the artwork of our talented young people exhibited at the CESD building. It was certainly no easy task, as there were over 100 pieces from students all across the county, which made wandering the halls of this 3-floor-exhibit quite a treat!

The four categories to be considered for judging included originality, composition, technique and emotion.

As I was walking the halls of the building, my eyes were drawn to a bright sunflower hanging on the wall. The center of the flower was painted a colorful grid, and the entire painting beamed warmth at me. I was reminded of the sunflowers that stood tall in the backyard garden of my childhood home in Michigan.

As I moved further through the gallery I saw 3 smoothly sculpted spheres in pastel shades of purple, blue, and red. Other small sculpted pieces lay close by including my favorite magical wizard, Mr. Harry Potter, and a cleverly titled, “Oregon’s Loch Ness Dragon” diving underwater. Perhaps the standout at the table was one with no title, that depicts a young woman in sunglasses with a strong posture and big smile. Painted around her are the words: empower, create, spark, lead, accomplish, begin, commit, and inspire, which is exactly what this young woman looks poised to do.

I appreciated how many young artists took inspiration from the terrain of the Pacific Northwest creating and capturing beautiful landscapes from oceans to hills including The Golden Hour, First Light, and Stillness. Let’s not forget a few of our animal friends that stand out in Wielding a Sword, Smudge and A Place for Them. Who doesn’t love a happy pup?

Overall I had a very positive experience, and felt the emotion, hard work, and artistry that went into every one of these pieces.

Thank you for a great show!

— Courtney

Although we are unable to physically go to art shows, this stunning gallery can be viewed at the link below! Art mediums include acrylics, water colors, drawing, photography, sculpture, and more!

***Winners will be announced in May so stay tuned!

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