Berthoud Teen Makes National Art Competition Semifinals

Isabella Lamar

Isabella Lamar, an 8th-grade Berthoud, Colorado resident and student of Colorado Preparatory Academy (K12-powered online school), was placed as a semi-finalist for K12’s National Art Competition for Isabella’s work, titled “Woman in Black and White.”

Isabella’s medium of choice was acrylic paint and molding clay. Isabella’s creative process included combining two of her passions, painting portraits, something she is familiar with, and trying out an unfamiliar medium, such as using molding clay to add a challenge. The entire piece took Isabella approximately five hours to complete.

When asked about the art courses through the online school, Isabella stated, “I’ve been painting for a few years, and I like advancing my skills. I’m proud of what I’ve done and want to keep growing in this area. This piece was something I spent a lot of time on. It’s relaxing for me and something I’m passionate about. It’s inspired me to look at art colleges.”

The competition was open to all students in grades K-12 enrolled at a K12-powered school and any other student in the U.S. interested in participating. Over 3,000 students nationwide submitted their work, approximately 100 of which were from Colorado.

After three rounds of judging, with the final round judged by professional artists, Isabella was the representative student selected from Colorado. As a semi-finalist, Isabella will receive a group virtual art lesson with a professional artist.

Her work will be showcased in a virtual art gallery, with the physical piece showcased at the Stride headquarters in the Washington D.C. area for one year.

Submissions for the art competition had to follow a set of guidelines and were required to be two-dimensional physical works of art; three-dimensional works of art, digital artwork, and photography were not permitted.

When asked how Colorado Preparatory Academy supported Isabella’s passion for expanding her creativity, Learning Coach and parent Quia Gonzalez shared that the school’s flexibility and student resources exceeded her expectations since transferring from a brick-and-mortar school to virtual learning.

“We’ve visited the Denver Art Museum during the day for creative inspiration and traveled to other cities without any disruption to her school work because it can be done anywhere – we have the flexibility to be able to do that now,” said Quia. “Isabella prefers time alone, and she learns best that way…We’ve converted our office to her own art studio, and the school provides everything you can think of when they send out school supplies for the semester. Printers, paints, brushes, clay, pre-made art kits – you name it. They give you everything your student needs to succeed. Isabella’s been able to even use her art skills to sell her artwork and take commissioned art requests,” added Quia.

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