Tallmadge teen's drawings on display in downtown Kent

by Holly Schoenstein | reporter Published:

Tallmadge -- The artwork of a Tallmadge teenager is on display in downtown Kent through Aug. 2.

Eleven of 13-year-old Katie Jordan's original drawings have been hanging in the windows of interior design and decorating firm Sue Nelson Designs, which is located at 156 S. Water St., since the Kent Heritage Festival July 5.

The collection consists of drawings made with pencil, colored pencil, charcoal and permanent marker, on special drawing paper.

Prints of the drawings are available for sale inside the store.

Katie, an eighth-grader at St. Patrick School in Kent, is a self-taught artist and has never taken any art classes. Sue Nelson became aware of her talent through one of Katie's teachers, and Nelson asked to display her drawings at her business.

According to Katie's mother, Kathy Jordan, Sue Nelson Designs features creative works of middle school-age students from the Kent area each year during the Heritage Festival. Usually, the displays have work from multiple students, but this year Nelson decided to feature only Katie's drawings.

Katie was "shocked" and "overwhelmed" when her teacher told her about the opportunity.

"It's a pretty big honor to be the only one featured and to have all the attention just on my work," she said.

Young talent

Katie Jordan has dabbled in various arts and crafts, including sewing, and has been drawing her entire life. About a year ago, she discovered her freehand drawing skills were improving so she began to focus on the method and found her drawings of humans and other objects became more realistic.

"I always use a reference picture, and I just sort of work off of that. Mainly, just sort of taking in the details and putting them on paper," she said. "I just use [the reference picture] to sort of recreate it, but not in anyway copy it."

One of her drawings, which was based on the book "After Ever After" by Jordan Sonnenblick, won first place in an art contest affiliated with the 2014 Youngstown State University English Festival last spring, for which students entered artwork for hypothetical covers of one of seven books they were required to read. A seventh-grader at the time, Katie was one of 100 seventh- to ninth-graders who entered artwork in the contest.

Her drawings also have been published in her fourth- and sixth-grade school yearbooks.

Katie sees herself entering more of her pieces into art shows and creating personalized drawings for others in the future.

The proceeds from the sales of the prints that are available at Sue Nelson Designs will be used to buy more art supplies.

Contact this reporter at 330-541-9428 or hschoenstein@recordpub.com

Facebook: Holly Schoenstein, Record Publishing Co.

Twitter: @SchoensteinH

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