Chelsea Borsack. Connected. Grade 12, Age 17. 2012 Gold Medal, Photography Portfolio.

We’re back with another pair of Portfolio Gold Medal winners from the 2012 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards! We’re delighted to introduce you to Chelsea Borsack and Lashanda Anakwah:

Chelsea, age 17, of Oceanside, NY uses photography to illustrate the similarities between natural human emotions and inanimate forms. Each of her pieces pairs a portrait and either a natural or man-made structure. “The aesthetic of each of the latter emits an emotion similar to that of each individual. We often overlook our surroundings and their impact, but it is our surroundings which are largely responsible for our emotions.”

Lashanda, also age 17, of Bronx, NY enjoys experimenting with different genres of writing (such as Journalism, Poetry, and Short Story) and learning how to be flexible with “this wonderful” craft. Her Writing Portfolio includes unconventional topics like her toes and plastic surgery. She explains, “I find it necessary to also talk about the everyday things that many people overlook, while trying to tackle big themes. The common aspects of life are so extraordinary!”

My Toes

By Lashanda Anakwah (2012 Gold Medal, Writing Portfolio)

They’re not mine, the shriveled sausages at the end of my feet. They can’t be mine, no one born and raised in America should have these toes. Those toes belong to someone who has known hardships beyond my comprehension. Possibly a slave who helped build the pyramids of Egypt, or picked cotton in the south. These toes have known more sun then raisins. They have walked through the ash caused by an erupting volcano and witnessed the transformation from active to inactive. They have existed as long as the first breath, sin. Those things that masquerading around attached to my feet-disguised as my toes, have walked the desert sands, and ran on hot coals. Those appendages have no place in heels or flats. They certainly do not belong on the red carpet or the front cover of 17 magazine. No amount of pedicures or nail polish can rid them of their past, and they’re stuck on me.

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