Join WSPN’s Fiona Peltonen and Olivia Green as they break down pieces from the select art gallery.
Join WSPN’s Fiona Peltonen and Olivia Green as they break down pieces from the select art gallery.
Credit: Courtesy of Amy O’Connell

Admirable artists: Student art spotlight

Wayland High School has a long history of distinguished student artists who are rich in creativity and technique. Select art students at WHS have their creations displayed on the walls of the fine arts hallway, creating a colorful array of jewelry, paintings, charcoal drawings and sculptures. These artists find inspiration in many different places and use a variety of materials to create their exhibits. We took a tour of this hallway art gallery and interviewed some of the artists about their processes.
Junior Tristen Chow, Advanced Metals
Junior Tristen Chow, Advanced Metals

Junior Tristen Chow’s first experience with metals was in sixth grade when she picked up bracelet making.

“I remember seeing inspiration online and I was like, ‘oh, I could definitely make that,’” Chow said. “I picked up some wire from the craft store and I just started testing things out and wrapping different things like gems.”

Art plays a large role in Chow’s family, but while her sibling specializes in 2D forms of art, Chow prefers creating in the 3D realm.

“I’ve always loved creating things with my hands,” Chow said.

Creating jewelry can be very complicated due to the sheer amount of equipment and materials needed.

“[Advanced Metals students] use different gauges of sheet metal that vary from nickel, brass and copper as the materials,” Chow said. “And then there’s different gauges of wire as well.”

Chow’s bracelet that is currently on display in the hallway has an intricate pattern and delicate design. Chow gets a lot of her inspiration for jewelry from the world around her.

“My siblings and my dad are really into aquatic life and birds, so I think we’re a very nature-centered family,” Chow said. “A lot of things from nature inspired me with different pieces.”

Metalworking is a hands-on art form that takes a lot of patience and creativity.

“It’s a great medium to get into especially if you’re looking for a creative outlet like me,” Chow said. “Even if you’re not the greatest at drawing or like more conventional 2D forms of art. I think it’s great if you want something to focus on for a long period of time.”

Junior Tristen Chow, Advanced Metals (Credit: Courtesy of Amy O’Connell)
Senior Ava Renneker, AP Art
Senior Ava Renneker, AP Art

Senior Ava Renneker creates pieces with many mediums, however, her two preferred materials are paint and graphite. More specifically, the piece of art that we want to focus on is a painting of Renneker’s that was made with gouache. This art medium is similar to watercolor, but has added white pigment to make it more opaque.

“It’s like a mix between acrylic and watercolor,” Renneker said. “So you can add more water and it won’t be as pigmented.”

The process of creating a detailed painting such as this is very involved.

“So I started [by using] pencil to draw out the proportions because it was based on a picture I took over the summer,” Renneker said.

She then used solid colors such as tan and blue to fill in the background before adding details. Overall, the painting took about two weeks of in-class work.

As for her inspiration, Renneker mostly uses pictures that she has personally taken.

“Lately, this year, I’ve been recreating a lot of pictures that I have either taken or pieces of when I was younger,” Renneker said. “Because I think it’s kind of fun to recreate the memory.”

Renneker believes art classes to be very fulfilling experiences, and as a multi-year art student, she has an abundance of knowledge surrounding art classes and techniques.

“If you can take an art class in high school, I would recommend taking it,” Renneker said. “Try to do art every day just to get into the rhythm of it.”

Senior Ava Renneker, AP Art (Credit: Olivia Green)
Freshman Corinne Larson, Art 1
Freshman Corinne Larson, Art 1

Freshman Corinne Larson has dabbled in the arts before, but this is her first time taking a class exclusively on it.

“It’s my first real time taking an art class and actually learning techniques and stuff,” Larson said. “I really love it, and it feels so soothing and calming.”

The prompt for this piece focused on angles. Larson’s teacher put numerous assorted objects on display and the students chose which item and angle they wanted to base their piece off of. Larson was interested in the still life of a birdhouse, pot and plants.

“I feel like I thought it would be really cool to draw a white porcelain pot like that,” Larson said.

This piece is completely charcoal based, incorporating many highlights and lowlights to add depth.

“I really liked working with charcoal, that was my favorite part of it,” Larson said. “It’s like a new tool.”

Charcoal art typically requires a lot of blending . The class provides smudging tools, but Larson prefers other methods.

“It’s actually way easier than the low pencil because it’s way more controlling, you put a ton of pressure,” Larson said.

Freshman Corinne Larson, Art 1 (Credit: Fiona Peltonen)
Senior Dasha Tveretinova, Advanced Jewelry and Metal Smithing
Senior Dasha Tveretinova, Advanced Jewelry and Metal Smithing

Senior Dasha Tveretinova is no stranger to working with heavy equipment in order to create art.

Tveretinova says her inspiration for her art varies and depends on the information she finds online.

“I usually look at the shape of the stone I have that I’m working with,” Tveretinova said. “And then just search up a bunch of images and if I find something I like, I put it onto my Google Doc of ideas for the pendant.”

Metalsmithing utilizes many pieces of equipment, but Tveretinova has some preferences towards her favorites.

“Soldering is a really fun part of making jewelry,” Tveretinova said. “It’s one of the most important things as well. It lets you connect different pieces and make intricate designs. As weird as it sounds, I love my file. It really helps make the design a lot neater, get rid of the unnecessary solder and unnecessary pieces that are not meant to be in the design.”

This piece in took Tveretinova about two months to complete, with many bumps along the way. Through hard work and perseverance, Tveretinova completed her piece and, upon reflection, is very proud of it.

“It took a while,” Tveretinova said. “There were a lot of struggles, so I’m happy that I finished it and that it looks pretty good.”

Tveretinova suggests that begining artists should take metalsmithing.

“I recommend this class to anyone who can take it,” Tveretinova said. “It’s a really fun class. It’s not too hard as well. It’s a kind of class that you go there and you enjoy it and you enjoy your time there.”

Senior Dasha Tveretinova, Advanced Jewelry and Metal Smithing (Credit: Courtesy of Amy O’Connell)
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