In total, 13 local students won for art, writing and music.
Put pen to paper and anything is possible. That's what 13 local students learned when they were selected for awards from the Sarasota chapter of the National League of American Pen Women. Students received their awards during a luncheon on April 27.
Students from Booker, Sarasota, Braden River, Lakewood Ranch, North Port, Pine View and Venice High Schools accepted awards from the organization, which has been giving out scholarships for more than 30 years. Betty Altman, a late longtime art member, began the tradition and her family foundation supports the art awards. The Pen Women and ABC Books support the letters awards and the music awards are supported by Halide Smith.
Three judges from the Pen Women chose the winners throughout the year.
"We work on this all year and it's so exciting now that we're here," letters chair Amy Elder said.
Each student got the chance to come up and present their work: The artists spoke about the technical ability and meaning behind their pieces, the writers read their works and the musicians played their compositions. Ashlyn Kuiken, a student from Sarasota High School who won a Betty Altman Special Award, used Photoshop to create a layered portrait, with the subject's face obscured and palms radiating from her body.
"I like to think this picture embodies strength and beauty," Kuiken said.
Join the Neighborhood! Our 100% local content helps strengthen our communities by delivering news and information that is relevant to our readers. Support independent local journalism by joining the Observer's new membership program — The Newsies — a group of like-minded community citizens, like you. Be a Newsie.