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Visual Arts

Students interested in the arts become a part of a fun, vigorous community, working with exceptional faculty artists who offer the guidance and technical skills needed to help our students discover their creative capacity.

Our Visual Arts Program is flexible, meeting the needs of students who simply want to fulfill a required art credit, as well as those who are looking for a four-year studio program that allows them to pursue an interest or a career in the arts. We emphasize the connections between creativity, communication, collaboration, critical thinking, and creative problem-solving. 

Visual artists in all stages - aspiring, emerging, and established - have opportunities to grow in creative work and thought through lively engagement with their craft.
 

Student artist glazes bowl before firing in the kiln.

Freshman Artist Portfolio Process


Incoming freshmen who are considering a four-year art education are asked to submit a digital portfolio. A portfolio is a collection of your work, which shows how your skills and ideas have developed over a period of time. It demonstrates your creativity, personality, abilities, and commitment and helps us to evaluate your potential and placement.

Portfolio Submission Form

 

“My art courses at McNick have helped me push my creativity in both quality and concept, but they have also helped me be confident enough to create what I see and want to create...I am more comfortable in expressing myself and my thoughts for what they are instead of editing them and myself for others.”

Isabella, Class of '21

McNicholas student testing the strength of her bridge made of pasta.

At McNicholas, we build bridges...but sometimes we break them too! Ms. Gaskins’s Architectural Drafting students designed, constructed, and then tested the strength of their spaghetti bridges. Junior Caroline Mohahan’s brilliant design was the strongest, holding 14.1 pounds!

Candle lighting at the McNicholas NAHS induction ceremony

Twenty-six Rockets were inducted to the National Art Honor Society this April. NAHS inspires and recognizes students who have shown an outstanding ability and interest in art and supports members in their efforts to attain the highest standards in art scholarship, character, and service.

McNicholas students hold their egg drop contraptions

Architecture students tested the design of their egg drop contraptions during the 2022 Architecture Egg Drop Competition. Even with the added challenge of a windy day, 18 of 25 eggs made it safely from the window of the convent to the blacktop three stories down.

Scholastic Gold Key Winners from McNicholas

Conner Dute ’22 and Conner Gibson ’22 were both awarded Gold Keys for their architecture work. Connor Dute was recognized for his pizza oven rendering, Rock-In Park, and Conner Gibson received his Gold Key for The Cozy Comb, a plan for sustainable living for displaced persons. Both Conners will move on the National Scholastic competition.