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South’s heart of art

As the 2024 South ArtFestapproaches, teachers and students alike prepare themselves to get everything ready and add finishing touches to their artwork to showcase another great year of South art.

Although there will be a new wave of art from students this year, everything else will be similar to previous years. For example, in preparation for this year’s ArtFest, art teacher Alexander Finney said the multipurpose room will be used again like in previous years. Finney also said he hopes to get a continued amount of student support for the show as ArtFest is a great way for someone to show off their work and inspire more students to join art classes and submit items to the festival.

“I hope that students see the work and are inspired to take more art classes and have the community get a better understanding of what we’re doing”, Finney said. “Not many people are in the I.A. building and our work goes unnoticed, so ArtFest is a good opportunity for the rest of the school to see what we do and I hope that can help grow our program and inspire kids to take more art classes.”

Finney isn’t the only one hoping to promote student creativity, Cassidy Woolums ’24 said she recognizes the importance of an event like ArtFest to bring confidence to students with their work and help to make them prouder of themselves in their regular classes.

“[ArtFest] gives a sense of accomplishment that you don’t always feel in art classes”, Woolums said. “Unlike other more academic classes, your talent, effort, capabilities, and accomplishments can’t be shown or justified by grades.”

Even with the similarities from previous years, everyone can at least count on more variety in the work from students. Art Teacher Sarah VanDagens said she is supporting this by changing up some of the projects in her classes like a new printing technique and letting her photo students do more independent work with their photos to help create more self-expression.

“As far as timing goes, we’ll get to see what those kids are personally interested in and we’ll get to see a lot more personalized self-expression, individualized lessons, so I think that’ll be cool,” VanDagens said. “I think we’re gonna see some more variety, which I’m looking forward to seeing how that turns out.”

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About the Contributor
Ronin McCracken ’26
Ronin McCracken ’26, Staff Writer
Drawing. Painting. Printmaking. Photography. After a summer spent unleashing his creativity through every possible medium, Ronin McCracken ’26 is ready to take on a brand new one: journalism. As a first year staff writer for The Tower, McCracken isn’t sure what he wants to write just yet, but he’s looking forward to voicing his thoughts in opinion stories in the coming year. “If I see a story that I like, I’ll just try to do that the best I can,” McCracken said. When he isn’t making art or chasing down his next big story, McCracken can be found with a controller in hand, fighting his way out of yet another Mortal Kombat chapter beside his closest friends. An avid gamer for many years, McCracken said he can hardly remember a time without a console. “I remember having a Wii when I was really little,” McCracken said. “We still have it, but it’s not even usable anymore. That was probably the first time I ever played a video game--I don’t even know how young.”

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