COLUMBIA — Abstract, geometric representations of fish. Primitivist portraits in bold color. The occasional cat sketch.
Monday marked the first art exhibit for the After-School Teen Artist Residency Program, a program with Resident Arts that aims to hone artists' skills along with their business acumen. Three high school students — Cecilia Machon, Zeke Stokes and Christina Easley — showcased their work at Orr Street Studios.
Stokes, who is interested in T-shirt design, said the program helped expose him to screen printing — essential if he wants to get serious. "I learned some stuff that I will probably use a lot later in life," he said.
Madeleine LeMieux, Resident Arts' founder and director, said she's building the program's curriculum around marketing, writing, and people skills. "Perserverance is the most important thing because it does take a lot of time to build yourself as a professional artist," she said.
Machon, who hopes to someday work as a graphic designer, said her inspiration came from "Warriors," a fantasy book series about cats.
"There is a battle between good and evil in the book, and I tried to capture that in my drawing," Machon said.
Easley enjoyed making collages because "my art is not one style, it changes," she said. "I'm still a beginner, so I like to explore new styles and ideas."
LeMieux will offer another course in the fall, and she hopes to raise enough interest to begin scholarships to the program. More information can be found at residentarts.org.
Supervising editor is Adam Aton.