Four students receive recognition for their artwork


Artwork submitted by Joey Lin Silverson

This piece titled ‘Cubs’ by senior Joey Lin Silverson won a silver key at the 2021 Scholastic Art and Writing Awards. Scholastic annually hosts the awards to give creative teens recognition and scholarships.

Elaina Mankowski , Layout Editor-in-Chief

Every year Scholastic holds the ‘Scholastic Art and Writing Awards’ for creative teens to submit artwork and creative writing. The submitted pieces are looked at by leaders in literary and visual arts and judged on technique, originality, creativity, and personal voice. Four students, juniors Ella Koltun and Lauren Benson and seniors Mason Jerdee and Joey Lin Silverson, were recognized and received gold and silver key awards for their artwork submitted into the program.

“I’ve been entering the Scholastic awards since like freshman year. So it was exciting to actually win one year,” senior Silverson said. 

The categories for submission of art into the program span from fashion and film to painting and ceramics. They offer opportunity for all veins of art in order to encourage teens to think creatively. Stillwater’s students submitted paintings, digital art and jewelry. 

Silverson creates digital art. She started out doing fan drawings, but then developed her own style and characters.

Teachers encourage students to enter their art in shows and contests like the Scholastic Awards throughout the year. Young artists can receive recognition and feedback for their work. Coming up soon, the juried White Bear art show is occurring where many art students are entering.

“My dad usually enters my work for me because he is an art teacher,” Koltun said.

I genuinely love all my friends so much, they’re all so talented and helpful.”

— Ella Koltun

Students create their artwork with various ideas in mind and for many different reasons. While Silverson experiments with her original characters, Koltun paints for another reason.

Her paintings are a “coping mechanism” and help her “process emotions.”

With various art programs at the high school, students are able to discover a passion for art in all different mediums. But young artists find community in places other than school.

“I started drawing when I was like 13 and I was doing fandom art. Then I kind of just found a community online and then that’s kind of what kept me drawing,” Silverson said.

“I genuinely love all my friends so much,” Koltun said. “They’re all so talented and helpful.” 

With encouragement from art communities and teachers, young artists are continuing to develop their personal voices in their artwork. They have an outlet for self expression, and receiving recognition whether from friends or from the Scholastic Awards encourages artists to keep pushing the boundary.