The creative flare of six Highlands youngsters has shone with success in a prestigious art competition.
Six Gib Gate students will have their art works showcased as part of the Young Archie Awards, held in conjunction with the Archibald Prize.
It is an impressive achievement considering the competition attracted 2001 entries from young people aged five to 18 from across NSW.
Two of Gib Gate's successful young artists were five-year-old Mia Vasales and Oliver Whitfield, 10, selected as finalists in the competition. Their works will be exhibited in the Art Gallery of NSW.
Meanwhile, Darcey Burrows, 10, James Macpherson, 8, Heston Ryan, 7, and Matilda Spong, 10, received honourable mentions for their artworks. These will be displayed on the gallery's website.
The school's visual arts teacher Jacqui Bolt is thrilled with the result which came from her young charges connecting with creativity and inspiration.
"I encouraged the children to be creative with their art," she said.
"I told them it didn't need to be exactly like the subject. Instead they were encouraged to choose someone who was special and inspirational to them and express how they felt about that person through their art work.
"They were taught how to use the materials and tools available to them and give the artwork their own expressive touch.
"All their work was really beautiful because they did it their way."
The accompanying comments from the children for their respective artworks drove home the sense inspiration they garnered from the subjects for the works.
Mia Vasales: My mum - This is mum cooking eggs and I love her eggs. I love mum so much.
Oliver Whitfield: My nan - I drew my nan because she was very lovely. It is a good way to remember her because she died, sadly. When she was alive, she and pop used to pick me up on Thursdays and Fridays and take me to their house. Nan would drive to pick my cousin and I up from school - I loved it.
James Macpherson: Self-portrait - I put a painting in the background of this picture because I love art and animals. I decided to draw a self-portrait because I like painting people.
Heston Ryan: Barclay - My brother is younger than me. My brother plays with me and I love him.
Darcey Burrows: My grandfather - I admire my grandfather a lot. He is extremely adventurous and this comes out in his love of building. I love having fun with him. I drew the background as a garden with lots of building things, as this is what our back garden looks like - with Grandad always in it!
Matilda Spong: My brother - My five-year-old brother is super funny and fun to play with. He is a great brother and loves soccer. He is always setting up mini soccer games in our backyard. I love to join in with him. He is really sweet.
Ms Bolt said she felt like the gallery "really got it" because they chose a lot of expressive works.
She said it was such a surprise to learn the outcome of the Gib Gate entries in this competition.
Ms Bolt was excited by an email from the Art Gallery of NSW praising the Gib Gate entries.
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