Arana’s art club arrives, astounding attendees


Jenny Loveland

The art room saw dozens of artistically inclined students fill its tables, scattering art supplies across every surface as they began to make art. While individual motivations for attendance differed, the shared love of creating filled the room as students worked. “I’m here because I love art, and I had an art class last semester. I really loved it and I wanted to get into a club where I could continue my passion and learn more. I’d like to focus more on doing more on colored pencils because I’d really like to develop my skill in that area. I’m [also] really excited about doing community service projects like the Art and Thrift,” magnet junior Claire Scafidi said.

Jenny Loveland and Dominik Perez

NC saw its first biweekly meeting of the National Art Honors Society this past Thursday led by art teacher Karrie Arana. Excited students filled her classroom, wondering just what kind of art they would make today. After a quick debriefing on the numerous opportunities the club would offer and a shortlist of events on the club’s horizon, the students busied themselves, working together in groups to craft unique communal artworks.

A handful of Arana’s AP art students from the previous semester attended this first meeting, hoping it could provide them with an opportunity to work on their portfolio without the AP art class structure. Their portfolios take the place of the normal AP exam at the end of the year, and the project involves the students completing a sustained investigation, a long term artistic study of a concept or idea that fascinates the artist. 

“Besides the fact that I like art, I just needed time to actually work on this sustained investigation project that was in [the] AP art class last semester. It’s a year-long thing and I just wanted the extra opportunity to talk to the teacher and communicate or have access to some materials I may not have access to when I’m at home. It’s just nice also to just have a community of people doing similar stuff and share input on what you’re doing,” senior and AP art student Lily Ponce said.

AP students made up less than a quarter of those in attendance as kids from across NC’s campus gathered to pursue artistic endeavors outside of school hours, and learn about everything that makes the National Art Honors Society unique when compared to a typical art club. The club provides students with a chance to display their art in national art exhibits, receive publication in National Art Education Association News and even win a scholarship of $1000 dollars to select art colleges. On the more local side of things, NC’s art club participants possess the chance of exhibiting their art amongst the first group of pieces to see the display in the art department’s own art gallery.

“After talking about it [with Susan Dowling] I wanted to make it more official since we had so many amazing things happening already this year. We’re wanting to grow the art program. We thought that making it an official National Art Honor Society chapter, the first ever at North Cobb, would be good to establish if we wanted to grow the art program,” Arana said.

As part of the necessary business, club members turned their thoughts towards nominations for club leadership. While most attendees appeared too focused on their collaborative art pieces to concern themselves with leadership positions, select students who had involved themselves in the art program showed interest in the chance to use their experience. Among these stood senior Payton Klesitz, an AP Art student whose work has enjoyed a spotlight from school administrators and the Fine Arts department.

“I’m going to run for president. I figured it would just give me one last hurrah for senior year. I’ve always been involved in all the art stuff, and I’ve always helped out, so I know how everything kind of works, right, so I figured I’d be good for the job,” Klesitz said.

The first meeting succeeded in informing the potential members of what to expect from the club, and exactly what they can gain from it. The club plans to charge five dollar dues from its members during their next meeting on Thursday, February 10.