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Budding artist thrilled by summer program
From left, Kelsey Bevins, Jensen Perehudoff and Abby Latham show off matching silk-screened shirts that they created.
RIVER VALLEY -- “I didn’t want to leave,” Kelsey Bevins said when she described her three-week session at Maine College of Arts (MeCA) in Portland.
The Mountain Valley High School senior lived in the college’s dorm and took classes in basic photography and life drawing as well as “a bunch of workshops.” In addition to experiencing college life, she met many students with a similar passion for art.
Bevins said, “I really liked it! It was a nice atmosphere and everyone was very helpful.”
Originally from Pennsauken, NJ, she enjoyed getting back to the city atmosphere and a taste of independence.
Bevins explained, “The best part was being in Portland. It was nice to have three weeks of independence and see what college would be like.”
She spoke highly of her basic photography class and the techniques she learned.
“I learned a lot of stuff,” Bevins explained. “I never did dark room photography. In the dark room, I learned how to dodge and burn. Dodge is taking light away, burning is adding light to an area.”
In addition to the basic photography class, Bevins had the opportunity to have her photography portfolio reviewed by a famous photographer, Thurston Howes. According to Thurston Howes Photography website, “Known for documentary, environmental portrait, studio, corporate and advertising photography, Thurston is a socially concerned visionary. Thurston’s work has been featured in many national and international fine art exhibitions as well as several feature films, including a one man shows at The Southeast Center of Contemporary Art, and The Anderson Gallery in Richmond, VA.”
Asked what she learned from Howes, Bevins replied, “We learned how to photograph our work with studio lighting. It was cool to talk to him.”
Photography was not her only class.
Bevins said, “In life drawing, we had nude models and drew them. That was a first for me. I learned a lot about proportion at first my drawings were very small then I learned to take up the whole paper.”
Some of her workshops included screen-printing, three-dimensional design, metal sculpture and mark making.
Prior to her experience at MeCA, Bevins spent a long weekend at Haystack Mountain School of Crafts in Deer Island. The program was designed for high school students and included world-renown instructors. At Haystack, Bevins concentrated on ceramics.
So, what is in the future for this budding artist? In addition to enjoying her senior year at MVHS, she is looking forward to college.
“I’m going to apply to MECA because it’s my first choice,” Bevins explained. “You don’t declare a major until your junior year but I want to keep up with photography.”
Perhaps someday, local residents will be treated to a gallery full of works by world-renown Kelsey Bevins!