BHS Artists

INTRODUCTION ­  Felicia Azzopardi, Staff Reporter

Burlingame High school has a variety of programs for every student with every passion. At the Burlingame B, we have covered sports, clubs, band, drama, choir and countless other facets of our school. Though we are constantly covering events, it is often easy to overlook the goldmine of artistic talent of BHS students. The BHS art program offers multiple classes for different levels of experience. Students can choose to take Art 1­2, Drawing 1­2, Adv. Drawing, or AP Studio Art, and have the opportunity to participate in the program for all four years if they so choose. Students who take these classes commit countless hours a week to perfecting their craft, and demonstrate unbelievable commitment to their art. Many also take classes outside of school. Some students plan on pursuing art as a career once they graduate. And so, we set out to recognize the artists on campus, and chronicle the time, effort, and passion they put into their work. Our reporters interviewed some of the AP and Advanced Art students, and learned about how art has impacted, and what it means, to each of them. Of course, these students are not the only dedicated and skilled artists on campus. The four students selected represent the colorful variety of student life here at Burlingame and the talent of our Panthers.

LENA BANCHERO ­ Stella Lorence, Staff Reporter

Although AP Studio Art is her first art class at BHS, junior Lena Banchero has been interested in art since fourth grade and has taken other art classes outside of school.  

Banchero does not hesitate to share her art with her friends and family, and even won $100 at the San Mateo County Fair for a piece entered in the Surrealist category.  

As for a career in art, Banchero explained the dilemma of artistry in the work force.    

“Ideally, I would paint all the time and people would buy my paintings and I'd make money that way, but I know that's not really realistic,” she said. 

She said a job in design or another creative field would be a sufficient option as well.  

Describing her style as “colorful,” Banchero’s favorite medium is oil paint, a medium she hopes to work with more after finishing projects for her art class at school. The process for creating a piece with oil paint starts with a turpentine undercoat, and goes step­by­step across the canvas with the paint, instead of layering the colors, like for acrylic paint.

When I asked Banchero how art has influenced her life, the other artists, who had been listening in, immediately chimed in with “less sleep!”  Though Banchero agreed with this, she went on to explain many positive influences as well.

“It gives me the opportunity to go into a focused meditative state on a daily basis. And when you're doing it right you feel connected.”

KATHERINE MOUDRY ­ Stella Lorence, Staff Reporter

Sophomore Katherine Moudry started making art when she was physically capable of holding a crayon. Currently enrolled in Advanced Drawing, she jumps between several projects, some assigned, some personal, and some paid commissions she coordinated online. 

“Art is my favorite way to express myself. It’s complex, complicated, but not thoughtless, and there’s lots of room for innovation,” Moudry explained.  

Most of her personal pieces are digital art, which is her favorite medium.  

“The filters and effects are far more versatile and easier to apply. And it doesn’t get all over the place,” she said. 

The lack of mess in digital art is a major improvement over her least favorite medium: oil pastel.

The general process to creating a piece of digital art, as Moudry described it, includes steps such as choosing a background color, experimenting with proportions are shapes, outlining the design (twice: once lightly, once darker and more precise), designating light and dark, and finally using colors to add details such as texture, depth, and shadows.  

Moudry says she would definitely be interested in pursuing art as a career, because of all the room for innovation. She also explained that with art, any other knowledge or skills can help to make things more realistic or generate ideas. Art as a career would allow her to explore other areas of interest while still improving her area of work.

Katherine Moudry Art 1.jpg

HANNA RASHIDI ­ Charlie Jones, Design Editor

“I know people try to define art a lot, and I would just say that the thing that makes art art is that it can’t be defined” junior Hanna Rashidi said, reflecting on what art means to her. 

Rashidi, who has been painting and drawing for as long as she can remember, is currently in her second year of advanced art at BHS. Outside of school, Rashidi goes to a weekly art class at Art Attack, where she is able to practice her favorite medium: oil paint. Rashidi appreciates the loose nature of oil painting and the sense of depth that it adds to a piece. 

When you speak to Rashidi about art, her passion is visible. Her favorite piece she created is a reinterpretation of a painting of a Victorian street in the middle of a rainstorm. Rashidi described to me the various effects that color, depth, and technique can have on a given piece, and how she works to incorporate specific feelings through her art. 

Right now, Rashidi is working on a realistic oil painting of Portland, OR, one of her favorite cities. She describes her style as contemplative with the intention of creating a piece that makes herself and those who view it feel a certain way once it is finished.

When asked about how art has changed her, Rashidi gave an interesting response that connects to a much larger theme than just art itself. 

“Art challenges you to not think in one way ­­ because art is so broad,” Rashidi said about the various styles and techniques to art, later adding that, “[art] makes you not write off people just because of your own personal preferences. You need to think that they have value to someone else, they still deserve respect.”

After selling her first painting recently, it is clear than Rashidi is beginning to receive well ­deserved recognition for her work. Rashidi plans on continuing her study of art in college and beyond.

COOPER THOMPSON ­ Claire Morrison, News Editor

“Everyone draws as a kid, but most end up stopping as they get older. I just didn’t.” Senior Cooper Thompson is a three year art student who is currently enrolled in AP Art. Besides being committed to the program here at BHS, Thompson decided to take his passion for art to the next level and went to Oxbrow School of Art in Napa for his second semester of junior year. He seemed to have gotten a lot out of the program and said it was relaxing. 

This experience sparked his interest into pursuing art in college, and has had to submit 12 to 15 pieces in a portfolio for each art school he applied to.

Thompson enjoys using charcoal as his medium, and finds inspiration in everyday normalities. 

“I draw from life, ranging from drawing my family to going out and drawing people at coffee shops,” he said.  

When Thompson was 16 he drew a self portrait with charcoal and it’s now his most treasured piece. He hopes he can develop a wider range of mediums to use, and hopefully that involves creating sculptures in the future. 

“Art to me personally is a means to filter imagery in order to convey a feeling or message.”

Posted on April 5, 2016 .