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Meet Snowcrest Art Students

Maggie Nylander grew up in Liberty, and went to Snowcrest Middle School.  As a student, Jennifer Sorenson was her art teacher.   Her exposure to art in middle school motivated her to pursue art education as a career and she got her degree from Weber State University.  Last year, she landed her dream job – right back where she started- she is the art teacher at Snowcrest!  


Ms. Nylander has her students integrate art into other topics that are relevant and important to their lives. The students are instructed to research the topic, then plan a piece of art and work on it with instruction from their teacher.  In addition to the art piece, they are required to write a short narrative of the how their research led them to create their artwork.

Our learning target for this particular piece of artwork was “I can create a meaningful piece of art that relates to the theme of climate change and possibly hints at a solution”.  I believe that my piece portrays this theme and has accurately met this goal.  I have used perspective, value and color to express this.  In my artwork, I have featured a baby deer and other forest animals in the midst of a forest fire on the left, and ash on the right. I created the deer to have an almost human-like expression of sadness and despair, to create more of a guilty feeling within the observer.  Slowly, the deer, the forest, and the other animals a burned away into ash.  This symbolizes the disappearance of our forests and wildlife as climate change happens. 

    Forest fires are one of the many results of climate change.  They happen either naturally or due to human activity. Both are considered climate change.  Naturally, forest fires happen when a forest in a drought, a consequence of climate change, is strike by lightning and the dry wood acts as perfect fuel for the fire. Unnaturally, someone could be in a dry area of the woods and leave their fire burning unattended or drop a hot cigarette on the ground.  Besides the spark that started it all, the initial problem that causes the droughts is the rise in green house gases and methane in the atmosphere.  This causes temperatures to rise and forests to dry out, leading to the eventual forest fire.

   The reason I had the focus of my piece be a baby deer is for many reasons.  The main one being the ability to relate to something.  With climate change, it is very easy to go about ignoring its effects if we say to ourselves “It’s just a tree, it’s just some ice”  But it is more difficult for us to ignore the issue at hand when we put a face to it.  For instance, you can probably remember a couple of the plots from Disney movies as a kid, but few are as prominent as the 1942 Disney movie, “Bambi”.  Although Bambi’s mother’s death was not real, the watchers grew exceedingly attached to her and when she died it was shocking and felt authentic.  This is what I am trying to convey in my artwork, although the baby deer is not real, humans will have the natural instinct to protect it, helping motivate the viewer to get up, and act on climate change.   Solenne Songer

    My artwork is supposed to portray a girl melting as the ice melts.  I want it to convey a message of how we are destroying ourselves by destroying the earth.  Almost all of the icecaps are melting away at an extreme rate.  It’s not something we can just put back together again.  Glaciers are disappearing more and more each day and with melting ice, comes rising waters and less land.  Coastal cities are in danger due to rising waters.  There are ways to help the cause, but everyone has to lend a hand.

   Though humans definitely played a part, we are also trying and doing so much to help it.  Finding new ways to power our lives, new inventions to help the planet survive, and new and improved equipment that lessens the damage.  We are now noticing a problem and are trying to fix it.

   For this piece, I used oil pastels and prismacolor. These things allowed me to deepen the colors and make the lighter colors pop at the same time. The Texture and movement of the ice was created by using different colors other than just blue. Mixing in pinks and red with greens and yellows.. It really made the ice stand out. It was very messy and blue was everywhere including my friend’s artwork. I tried to brush it off but it almost just made it worse.  But things worked out and I am proud of the outcome of this project.

   My view has really changed on how humans interact with the environment.  But I have also seen that we have done so much to help it and trying to forward the process to a cleaner atmosphere.   Angel Shepherd

January Assignment: “I can create a meaningful piece of art that relates to the theme of climate change and possibly hints at a solution”. 

ASHES  Solenne Songer
Lindsey Wolthuis

My piece of artwork is less focused on the effects of climate change, but more of the cause.  Here, a jaguar is sitting in a dead tree surrounded by a destroyed rainforest that was once its home.  Deforestation releases carbon dioxide into the air which pollutes it and causes global warming.  More than half of the world’s plant and animal species live in the rainforest.  When we are cutting and burning down trees we are not only killing the rainforest’ animals, but the ones suffering halfway across the world where global warming is happening.  Both the cause and effect are destroying animal’s lives.

I have always loved cats and tropical rainforest settings, so I decided to make them the subject of my artwork so I have a connection.  The background was done in oil pastels and the jaguar was done in acrylic. 

I don’t think enough people know about what’s going on in the rainforest, and other places where environments are being destroyed and global warming is happening.  I want this piece to open a window in people’s minds.

   My artwork is meant to have an emotional impact on the people that see it.  Even if they can’t relate to the jaguar’s situation they can clearly see the contrast between the bright cat and the dull, dead, background.  The colors I used create emphasis.  For most people, the sight of a destroyed environment can bring a sense of sadness and sympathy.  I hope my artwork can help people see what we are doing to the environment and make a difference in this world.  Lindsey Wolthuis

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