FHN’s Artistry Making a Difference

By Mia Elliott

Art Club is having a hat day on Friday, March 6 to raise money for the orphans in India. The money will go to the Memory Project which is a non profit organization that helps high schoolHatDay students across the country connect with an orphanage. The Memory Project sends photos of the orphans to the school and the students then create an actual drawing and/or painting of the orphan. The sponsor then sends the drawings back to the Memory Project where they will then fly to the orphanage and hand deliver the drawings, take pictures of the orphans with their new portraits, and then presents the orphanage a check worth a lot of money.

“I feel wonderful, it’s very rewarding to see that my own students are doing such a generous thing to help others,” art teacher Mandy Knight said.

As of last year, the Memory Project gave away $2,000. This year, the orphanage for FHN was in India. The art club is sponsored by art teacher Michael Leistner. Members and even non members of the art club all come together to draw portraits of the orphan that they receive.  The goal of the drawings that students make are to give the orphans  in India something to hold onto, since they don’t have pictures of themselves.

”I feel it’s an amazing project because it helps orphans who otherwise would not have portraits of them, have the opportunity to have some kind of remnant of their childhood,” artist Christina Turncull said.

The students work on the portraits for about a month, and according to Leistner, drawing these orphans can make you have a connection with them. Leistner is most excited about receiving the photos that will be taken when the orphans receive their portraits. This year, the Memory Project may even send a video.

“Of course it brings us all a little pleasure knowing that we’re helping someone who’s may be less fortunate than we are,” Leistner said. “But also on a more selfish level, when you are looking at this photo of this kid and you’re drawing them everyday and you’re working on it everyday, you get this weird sort of connection with this kid. It makes you feel good.”