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2014 Creative Empowerment 
Arts Contest 2014 Winners

Samantha Uebel – LITERARY ARTS - A Poem "Girl Without a Voice" (9th Grade - North Babylon High School) $500.00 to set up and run a club/support/leadership group at school  

Ben Rhee - LITERARY ARTS - A Poem "Just a Click Away" (10th Grade - Syosset High School) $500.00 to set up a club/ support/ leadership group at school  

Nailah Garard - VISUAL ARTS - Portrait - "Trapped" (11th grade - Half Hollow Hills High School East) 1000.00 College Scholarship.  

Aly Brier - SHORT FILM - "A Helping Hand" (12th grade - The Wheatley School) $1000.00 College Scholarship  

Julia Maher - VISUAL ARTS - Portrait - "Paranoia"/ "Slipping away from Sanity" (121th grade - Farmingdale High School) $1000.00  
College Scholarship  

Gigi Larios -Mendez - VISUAL ARTS - "Too Blind to See" (Roosevelt Senior High School Graduate/ SUNY Old Westbury Freshman) $1000.00 College Scholarship.  

My name is Julia Maher. I am seventeen years old and I live in North Massapequa. I am currently a senior attending Farmingdale High School. Ever since I was a young child art has been my passion. I started drawing when I was four years old. My grandmother had kept every drawing I ever made for her and recently created a beautiful scrapbook showing my progress as an artist as I grew older.

 What I love about drawing is that it comes naturally to me. I am a fast worker and once I have an image in my mind, it just flows so easily. I can sit down for hours and just draw, without getting bored. It gives me a chance to express myself in a peaceful and therapeutic way. Drawing helps relieve my stress and takes my mind away from my busy schedule. 
In creating this work I used black and white charcoal to create a dark, eerie feeling. The girl in my drawing is a representation of someone very close to me. She struggled with anxiety, as do many teens in our generation. With all the stress and work loads placed on our backs at school and even at home, an innocent teen can transform into an anxious and detached individual. 

In my piece the words in the background portray thoughts and emotions that are running through the young woman's head. Irritable, compulsive, alone, delusional, irrational, suspicious; all words that relate directly to a developing illness in our society; paranoia. I used red pastel to emphasize the word paranoia in the composition. Through this piece I want others who struggle with this issue to know that they are not alone and they can overcome their negative thoughts to create themselves a more optimistic life.

Julia Maher - Farmingdale High School $1000.00  College  Scholarship Winner
Scholarship Presentation Gallery
                   click to enlarge
Paranoia/Slipping Away From Sanity
by Julia Maher