Oak Harbor students artistic talents displayed

Local students showed off their creative talents during an opening reception Thursday for the annual Oak Harbor Library Teen Art Show.

More than 300 pieces of art, ranging from ceramic sculpture, photography, line drawing to metalwork, were on display for the community.

“It’s awesome that the kids get to show their work in such a nice setting,” said Jennifer Yates, one of four art teachers who have approximately 100 students in grades nine through 12.

For some of the students, this was their first art show in a formal setting, she said, adding it is an opportunity for the students to come together and appreciate a variety of art created by their peers.

Keith Hovde, an 11th-grade student and metalwork artist, said he never felt he was an artist until he started taking classes.

Hovde said he has images in his head and is able to turn them into tangible art pieces.

“I think it is really cool the school has an opportunity like this,” he said.

During the opening reception, funded by Friends of the Library, students mingled over punch and munched on hors d’oeuvres provided by Oak Harbor High School’s Wildcat Catering.

Twelfth-grade advanced art student Jacob Wotring said he was both excited and nervous about taking part in his first show.

“I’m not the most social,” Wotring said.

Wotring has plenty to be proud of, however. His metalwork was entered in a scholastic nationwide competition, and he also worked as an apprentice with a goldsmith in Anacortes.

Wotring said he gives most of his jewelry art away as gifts.

Oak Harbor librarian and teen contact coordinator Jessica Aws said the annual art show exemplifies the library as a community space.

“It’s incredible,” she said. “This is such an awesome opportunity to bring the community together.”

Aw’s said this was the 11th year for the library hosting the show.

On opening night, 369 people attended the event, she said, and 506 people attended during the course of the three-day showing.