Dylicious Jones by Ellie Braun, age 17, Grade 12. 2014 Gold Medal, Art Portfolio.

Today we share with you the work of Jack Rayson and Ellie Braun. Both Medalists gravitate to things discovered and experienced in our youth. While talking about childhood and adolescence, Jack explains “There are so many experiences to be had, experiences that cannot yet be expressed in words, and I think those indescribable moments of discovery or realization are the purest moments because they escape language.” Ellie is “inspired to place an emphasis on human sexuality and gender identity through my investigation of adolescents changing their physical appearance.”

Jack and Ellie truly encompass our criteria of originality and technical skill, and bring a genuine and honest personal voice and vision to their work, even when the subject matter can be difficult to address. Take a look at more of their work below! Read More


Renal by Madison Brownson. Age 17, Grade 12. 2014 Gold Medal, Art Portfolio.

Hanel Baveja and Madison Brownson both create to help bring a new level of awareness to our lives and our bodies. While Hanel’s “greatest hope for my work is that my poems strike a chord of shared existence” with her readers, Madison’s “hope is to make the viewer pause and realize the beautiful complexity of their own anatomy or the world around them.” Both artists aim to awaken their audience to the intricacies of the world we share.

In honor of National Poetry Month, here is a selection from Hanel’s Award-winning portfolio, comprised entirely of poetry! You can also see more of Madison’s plush organs below!

When Clark’s Ice Cream Parlor first opened

Combinations we’d never even dreamed of.
Names too long to remember:
Dark chocolate ice cream with raspberry
cheesecake pieces and caramel bonbons,
sweet cream ice cream with bumbleberry
compote and jordan almond fudge chunks. Read More

Tyra A

Tyra Abraham, Drops of Life

The spark of genius, the burst of inspiration…where and how do they begin? This spring we will profile our 2014 Portfolio Gold Award Medalists and let you draw your own conclusions! Without further ado, please meet our inaugural pair: artist Tyra Abraham and writer Jonathan Gelernter.

Tyra Abraham is from New York City and attends high school at the Hewitt School. “The work I submitted for the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards is based on the theme of vulnerability. This project represents my most personal and sentimental work. It also embodies my journalistic approach to taking photographs. I cannot think of another set of images that epitomizes my style of photography, and for this reason, I submitted it for this competition.

For me, photography serves as an outlet for my creativity. I love wandering around New York City and exploring new neighborhoods. At school, I am a photographer for the yearbook and the student newspaper. I take photos of a variety of school events ranging from sports games to concerts to portraits of the faculty and students. My camera is like my personal journal; I carry it almost everywhere and document my surroundings. It’s rare to not see me with a camera hanging around my neck. Photography is deeply personal and can sometimes be more effective than writing.” Read More

Katiuscia Gregoire. Guard. Grade 12, Age 17. 2013 Gold Medal, Art Portfolio.

Katiuscia Gregoire. Guard. Grade 12, Age 17. 2013 Gold Medal, Art Portfolio.

What does it mean to be an “emerging” young artist or writer? Finding your voice and articulating your vision requires that you possess a point of view, know who you are, and are ready to make that statement. As this 2013 Scholastic Awards’ Gold Medal-winning portfolio pair prepares to leave the creative chrysalis, they use humor to explore who they are and how they can stand out.

The Culture of Secrets, an Alphabet

By Anthony De Santis (2013 Gold Medal, Writing Portfolio)

From the Latin Antonius. I never believe Papa Nicki, my great-grandfather, when he tells me that my name means “worthy of praise.” I tell him too many people are named Anthony for it to mean anything special, and yet, he has a way of saying the word that’s different than when he calls any of the other Anthonys in our family by their name. This is especially true now that we both knew that he’s dying. Read More

eyes on the prize

Alex Reynolds. Three Blind Mice. Age 17. 2013 Gold Medal, Art Portfolio.

Alex Reynolds and Kathleen Radigan use their images and words to form relationships with the people who inspire them and share similar visions and aspirations. In other words, they reach out to artists and writers! Both are influenced by and open to the work of others, and believe that creativity is not an individual experience but rather a communal one. Jump in and see what you think!

To Walt Whitman
by Kathleen Radigan

I’ve got a crush on your paint box,
thick and weightless as a breath lost in summer.
We’re caught in the courtyards of crickets who
waltz through the wet grass,
ground’s green trumpets, uncurled lizard tongues.
I imagine them floating like stars for an underground country
collecting in small sacks the wishes of girls in yellow dresses.
It’s a childish fantasy, and yet
I cannot help but dream up ways around the sailor’s knots you set. Read More

Christian Caraballo. Lyrical Censorship. Age 17. 2013 Gold Medal, Art Portfolio.

Christian Caraballo. Lyrical Censorship. Age 17. 2013 Gold Medal, Art Portfolio.

Christian Caraballo.Vroom Street. Age 17. 2013 Gold Medal, Art Portfolio.

Christian Caraballo.Vroom Street. Age 17. 2013 Gold Medal, Art Portfolio.

Christian Caraballo won a Scholastic Award Portfolio Gold Medal this year for 8 great works of art, all (with the exception of a self-portrait) depicting parts of a city that have been adorned with the tags of graffiti artists. Included with his portfolio was an unusual artist’s statement – a rap song explaining the intricate connection between his passions: MCing, hip-hop culture, and painting! Read on to find out how Christian makes art about words, and uses those words to speak about art.

Does his work speak to you? Let us know in the comments below!

Artist’s Statement (excerpt)

As I sit here writing with this pen,
I reminisce about how it all began,
at the young age of five,
I found myself living in a world I couldn’t define,
I grabbed a pencil and pad,
to duplicate the actions I’ve witnessed from my dad,
imagination leaked,
at a young age I peaked,
before I could speak,
I had this artistic talent inside of me,
Read More