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Art projects draw Southside High School students to campus

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Southside High School students believe in the art of giving.

Students in a class taught by Kimberly Thibodeaux donated 22 pen and ink drawings they created to the University of Louisiana at Lafayette on Monday.

UL Lafayette was the perfect recipient of the black and white drawings. The renderings are of campus halls, buildings and landmarks.

Thibodeaux coordinated the project with Dr. Nathan Roberts, dean of the College of Education. He said the signed drawings will be framed and hung at as-yet-undetermined spots on campus.

“When people see them, they will see wonderful representations of campus, as well as the enormous talent of a group of our local high school students,” Roberts said.

Thibodeaux said for the past two years her art students have done pen and ink drawings of landmarks in Youngsville, where the school is located.

Thibodeaux, who earned a bachelor’s degree from the College of Education in 1993, decided to branch out this year. She chose her alma mater for its “history, beauty and because it’s so meaningful to the community.”

The UL Lafayette pen and ink projects began late last year. Students created their drawings based on photographs of campus buildings taken by Thibodeaux.

As their name implies, pen and ink drawings are done with pens rather than materials such as pencils, pastels or charcoal. The medium is challenging, because mistakes can’t be erased or painted over.

It’s also fun, said Sydney Dawson, a sophomore at Southside who drew Burke-Hawthorne Hall, home to several academic departments and radio station KRVS.

Dawson always enjoyed drawing but was unaccustomed to pen and ink before the class project began. She said a favorite technique she learned was crosshatching. The process involves drawing fine parallel lines in mesh-like patterns to give an image tone or texture.

“It’s kind of like a basket weaving pattern, to give shade or depth, to make a tree or building darker,” she explained.

See the students' artwork in our Facebook gallery.

Photo: Southside High School art students created pen and ink drawings of different spots on the University of Louisiana at Lafayette campus that they donated to the school. Credit: Rachel Rafati / University of Louisiana at Lafayette