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Annual Student Art Show Goes Digital

One of the most anticipated nights of the year in the Seaford School District is the annual art show and since it couldn't be held in person due to the COVID-19 pandemic, an online student art gallery was created.

Art department chairman Curtis Tripoli said the art show typically draws hundreds of students, parents, staff and community members to Seaford High School, where work created by students from kindergarten through 12th grade is displayed in the main hallway and cafeterias. The district’s art teachers still wanted to highlight their students, so a virtual art gallery was created using Adobe Lightroom. Work is arranged by teacher and features drawings, paintings, photography, sculpture and digital art.

“The students really look forward to the art festival every year and we really wanted to give them an opportunity to share what they’ve been creating,” said Jamie LaSota, who teaches at the high school and Seaford Manor Elementary School.

Ms. LaSota added that the art show is a great way for students to see the work made by their peers throughout the district. For the elementary artists in particular, it gives them the chance to learn about the art they can create and the techniques they can further explore in higher-level classes at the middle school and high school.

Diya Hathiramani, a second grader at Manor, had a bubble letter project displayed in the online gallery. She learned about the color wheel by using warm colors to fill in her “D” and cool colors to create the background.

“I like how the colors I chose made it pop,” she said, adding that she felt honored to be chosen for the digital art show. “I love art because it helps my express myself.”

Sophomore Owen Wendt has taken a big interest in computer graphics and is in Mr. Tripoli’s digital art class. He has several digital art pieces featured in the show, many of which he had made on his own since schools were closed.

Over the past few months, Owen has been experimenting with the rotoscoping technique, combining lots of small shapes to create a larger image in Adobe Illustrator. He enjoys making landscapes and portraits, often using existing pictures as a starting point.

“It's very time consuming, but it’s also peaceful and relaxing,” he said. “I like to experiment and see how far I can go.”

Mr. Tripoli said that the online gallery was launched just before Memorial Day and is a “living document” so teachers can continue to add student artwork. It also features a section of pieces made by Seaford teachers and staff.