Three Thomson High School students recently won awards in two art contests, and it's no surprise to their teacher.
"I love putting their work up against students of other schools because they come out on top," said Claudia Wells, the THS art teacher. "I think they are the best, and I like for others to see that."
Seniors Danielle Moore won best of show and Danette Shulte won first place in the Southeastern Natural Sciences Academy's Art of Nature contest. Junior Catherine Royal won honorable mention in the Georgia Commission on the Holocaust and the Georgia Department of Education's annual statewide "Lessons of the Holocaust" contest.
"I'm proud of them," Mrs. Wells said. "They put a lot of time and a lot of effort into their projects."
For the nature art, Dunette said she worked on her project "for weeks." Danielle said she waited until the last minute, but "it was all I did for that week." The contest took place at Phinizy Swamp on April 21 for Earth Day. The girls had to create mosaic images of nature using paper clippings or shreds from magazines.
Dunette, who made a ladybug on a leaf, chose to leave white spaces between her torn pieces of paper.
"I felt like it made the water more free and flowing," she said. "I really didn't expect to win."
Danielle's project is a close-up of a water lily. She said the challenge was finding enough magazine pictures with matching colors to fill up her picture. When the National Geographic proved insufficient, Danielle said she turned to her mother's Redbook.
"I couldn't find enough values in blue," she said. "So I added the purple and I like the result."
Catherine said she was disappointed with her honorable mention, but she knew there was "too much competition" because her contest was at the state level.
"But I wasn't doing it for the placement," she said. "I did it because the subject interests me."
The holocaust contest required a lot of research as well as artistic talent. Catherine made a 24 by 24-inch collage on a foam board covered with fabric. Her collage included fabric images of the Jewish Star of David, the Nazi Swastika, emblems on the armbands of concentration camp victims and a poem.
Although she knew about the holocaust from history, Catherine said working on the project had a great impact on her.
"I had to read a lot of books, and it made it seem more real," she said. "I had read it in historical fiction before, but now it is more real."