Students win awards at Reflections contest

Madeline Smyser and Linnea Kennedy

The results are in for Reflections, a contest in which students create art such as paintings, sculptures, poems, short stories, musical compositions and movies and send them to a panel of judges. Three Vandegrift students walked away with an award.

“I love how creative Reflections allows students to be,” freshman competitor Zia Rashed said. “It’s so cool to see even little kids do such amazing things.”

Sophomore Christina Kovacs had four submissions for Reflections this year, two of which advanced to state.

“I had two short films, both an animated one [‘Colorful’] and a live action one [‘Bloopers’],” she said, “a time-lapse of me drawing something and a poem [‘Price’].  I got an Award of Excellence for ‘Colorful’ and ‘Price.’ Those both went to state, so I’m really proud of that.”

The theme of this year’s Reflections was “What is your story?,” which freshman Zia Rashed captured with a photograph of “Graffiti Park” in downtown Austin.

“Even graffiti has a story,” freshman Zia Rashed said. “Each piece of art reflects the artist and their story in some way.”

The third student, a first time Reflections competitor, sophomore Josh Sharp, decided to tell his own story instead.

“My submission was a literary piece over the impact and influence that love has had on my life,” Sharp said. “That is why I named it ‘The Power of Love.’ The theme seemed to fit my submission well because I had allowed love to define many of my thoughts and actions, which I believe to be a very large part of my story and life.”

At the end of it all, Kovacs was presented with two Awards of Excellence and an honorable mention. Rashed won an award of excellence, and Sharp received an honorable mention. However, all three students feel that they came away with more than just a certificate.

“It felt like the work I put into my piece was well worth my time,” Sharp said, “It gave me hope towards the potential I have as a writer.”

Kovacs also felt honored with more than just an award.

“It’s such a weird feeling to see something that you created or drew alone in your bedroom, way past daylight hours, up on the big screen, making people laugh and cry and applaud,” she said. “It’s just made me really proud to have something like that and be noticed.”