Vandegrift Voice

Junior composes artwork to show at exhibit

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The marker squeaks against the paper surface, a meditating sound to junior Ashton Monts. Her brows furrowed in concentration as she continues to create a work of art, anticipating her client’s reaction.

In November Monts will exhibit her works in a room she booked while working with an organization that helps new coming artists. She is currently getting her pieces ready for the Austin exhibit.

“It’s really cool to me,” Monts said. “It’s fun to see what you can put on paper from your head, what you can put on a canvas directly from your mind.”

Monts has advertised her artwork on social media and in school hallways all year. If a student is interested in custom art, they can contact Monts via text to request an artwork be made.

“At school I want people to appreciate art more.” Monts said. “A lot of times it gets taken for granted, and I like to have people look at something they wouldn’t normally like and find beauty out of it. Especially if it’s as weird as the stuff I do.”

Monts’ pieces are mainly contemporary abstract. If a client wants her to use certain colors or draw in a certain style, she is “always willing to do what people want.”

“I’m not really impressionist by any means,” Monts said. “I can’t draw people or animals at all realistically. Typically I do my style, but art is art. If someone wants a flower or something more realistic, I can always do that for them.”

So far, six people have contacted Monts asking for her custom art. Monts works with what the client to make a piece that they will like while still keeping with her preferred style of art.

“A lot of times they just want me to do whatever and surprise them, which I think is fun,” Monts said. “There’s not necessarily meaning in[most of] my art, more or less just how it can get people [who do] not normally appreciate something like art to appreciate it once I draw it.”

Sophomore Jules Mokry was one of the six to receive a handmade piece from Monts. She received a large, yellow canvas with a face drawn on it.

“She didn’t actually create it for me, it was from her instagram and I just bought it from her,” Mokry said. “ It’s [hanging] in both my rooms, one at my mom’s and one at my dad’s. It’s really pretty.”

Last year Monts took Art I at Vandegrift, but she is not currently enrolled in any art class at school. However, she mostly works on her art in school, drawing every chance she can get during class.

“I use anything I can get my hands on,” she said. “I’m notorious for for grabbing whatever I can find.”

Monts has plans to study wildlife research after high school. Although she will not take art up as a profession, she does not intend to stop advertising on her social media page, @ashtonmonts.

“Don’t be afraid to get weird with the art you make,” Monts said. “Don’t hold back. That’s what makes it good, how weird it is. The weirder you can get the better.”

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