Student art on display on Pioneer Way

Amaya Sanders loves to draw. Flowers, trees, butterflies.

Amaya Sanders loves to draw.

Flowers, trees, butterflies.

And her favorite subject, what she calls “mystical creatures” — the mermaids and other fantastical characters that unfurl from her colored pencils.

For the first time, the 10-year-old gets the thrill of seeing her artwork displayed in a public venue. She and other Oak Harbor elementary school students will have their art hung in storefronts along Pioneer Way for a week beginning Monday.

Amaya, a fifth-grader at Olympic View Elementary, is super excited. But then again, the staff at the school say Amaya is excited at just about everything. She talks so fast she’s not allowed to lead the pledge of allegiance because nobody else can keep up.

She and her class created “op art” — optical illusions that trick the eye. Hers is a contrast of dark bold lines and bright, springtime colors.

“When I start drawing, I let my ideas come out on the paper,” she said.

Amaya isn’t sure what she wants to do for a grown up job, but she hasn’t ruled out being an artist. She’s constantly sketching. She’d love to someday own a spacious studio filled with paints and canvases.

“When I draw, I get a lot of creative ideas,” she said. “Me and my brother have drawing contests with my mom.”

She lets her little brother win.

This is more than a creative outlet for the students. Amaya’s art teacher, Christina Brady, said art helps her students make connections and solve problems in other academic areas. This particular lesson included a history of optical art, and students also needed to measure precisely to make this particular piece successful.

Her students loved a book on optical illusions she picked up called, “Eye Twisters.”

“It’s the most popular book in my class,” Brady said.

She said the levy taxpayers approved in 2013 helps support projects such as this one.

This is the 14th year of the Elementary Artwork, which coincides with Holland Happening.