Featured TECH Artist | Stephanie Drews
Before starting in the TECH Art Program, Stephanie had painted but never created something she felt was worthy to hang on the wall. You see, Stephanie has a visual impairment and felt creating professional artwork for sale was something she was simply unable to do. TECH staff could see she had an interest in painting and began working with Stephanie to create paintings with the intention of her being able to display them for the June 2015 Art Walk.
Staff started by creating multi-step stenciling and worked closely with Stephanie, going back and forth doing each step repeatedly until the art was completed. When she sat back to look at her final product, her initial response was excitement but also had feelings of apprehension and inadequacy. She was nervous about the quality of her work. With encouragement, Stephanie quickly grew in ability, but most importantly, in her confidence.
As her fellow artists began growing in their art skills, they started drawing their own subject matter instead of having their teacher sketch it out for them. This is something Stephanie was not sure she would be able to do but with persistent, positive coaching, she rose to the occasion and exceeded her own expectations!
In early 2016, Stephanie completed a sunflower painting that quickly became a high-demand painting. Stephanie’s sister made the first purchase and requested three more as Christmas gifts. As word spread about the beautiful sunflower paintings, the community started requesting commissioned pieces from Stephanie. Two years later, you can find Stephanie in the art studio, pushing herself and her skills to create paintings like we've never seen before. Her artwork was among 33 pieces on display the opening night of the TECH Art Gallery and every single piece sold. We are so proud of her persistence and dedication to pushing herself. We're looking forward to watching Stephanie continue to grow!