Wonderful, Colorful World of Cray-Pas® 2009 Contest Art Student Winners Awards and Exhibit

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Four thousand entries from United States and Canadian students for this fourteenth annual Cray-Pas contest. One hundred and fifty finalist's art displayed at the Museum of Children's Art, Oakland, CA from January 31 to March 15, 2009. Finalist's artwork and a video are posted online iat: http://www.sakuraofamerica.com/contest-winners. John A. Rodak, art educator, states "..an annual event with my public school students. Sakura is to be congratulated for their undying devotion to student art... Any time ...their work is recognized, I consider it a blessing. Winning and not winning are a part of life..."

A child's overall academic performance benefits from art education. Today's students will be the leaders of the twenty-first century, and can develop valuable skills from art such as critical thinking, effective self-expression, and creative problem solving

Students from across the country eagerly await the announcement today of the winning artwork submitted to Sakura of America's Wonderful, Colorful World of Cray-Pas® 2009 Contest. Artwork of one hundred and fifty finalists, highlighting nine winners and honorable mentions, have been selected and on display at the Museum of Children's Art, Oakland, California from January 31 to March 15, 2009. Close to four thousand entries were received from United States and Canadian students for this fourteenth annual contest.

The finalist's artwork and a video of the artwork are posted online in the Cray-Pas Contest Gallery at: http://www.sakuraofamerica.com/contest-winners. The Oil Pastel Society will host the winner's artwork on its website: oilpastelsociety.com. In addition, the World Awareness Children's Museum in Glens Falls, New York will select three hundred to five hundred pieces from the remaining entries for its annual International Youth Art Exchange Program.

"The Cray-Pas contest is an annual event with my public school students. Sakura is to be congratulated for their undying devotion to student art efforts and their talents. Any time even one of my students has their work recognized, I consider it a blessing. Winning and not winning are a part of life; students (and their teachers) learn to accept this as part of life and the growing process. With that in mind, our school will enter next year," states John A. Rodak, art educator of student finalists of Kleb Intermediate, Spring, Texas.

"A child's overall academic performance benefits from art education. Today's students will be the leaders of the twenty-first century, and can develop valuable skills from art such as critical thinking, effective self-expression, and creative problem solving," states Julia Reed, marketing manager for Sakura of America.

Judging Level: Kindergarten through Second Grade:
First: David Monahan, Mary Help of Christians School, Laredo, TX
Second: Jordon Johnson, Byrd Elementary, Graniteville, SC
Third: Jeana Yoon, Park's Studio, Chatsworth, CA

Judging Level: Third Grade through Sixth Grade:
First: Anderson Jenkins, Westminster Schools of Augusta, Augusta, GA
Second: Evelyn McWilliams, Lewis & Clark Elementary School, St. Peters, MO
Third: Lillian Hong, Sharron Art Center, Piscataway, NJ

Judging Level: Seventh Grade through Eighth Grade:
First: Joshua Jang, Da Vinci Art Studio, Irvine, CA
Second: Rachel Blough, Spring Valley School, Farmington, PA
Third: Yeji Kim, Elite Art School, La Crescenta, CA

The list for all one hundred and fifty finalists is attached in a pdf file.

About the Wonderful, Colorful World of Cray-Pas® 2009 Contest:
Sponsors:
Sponsors include: Arts & Activities magazine, American Artist magazine, Artograph, ArtWare by You, Blick art materials, C Thru Ruler Company, School Arts Magazine, General Pencil Company, Meninger Art Supplies, Michaels The Arts and Crafts Store®, Museum of Children's Art, Nasco, Oil Pastel Society, Oriental Trading Company, Pacon Corp., Sax Arts & Crafts, Silver Brush limited, Star Products, The Artist's Magazine, Today's Catholic Teacher, Triarco® Arts and Crafts, and World Awareness Children's Museum.

Prizes:
Students awarded first place in each category will receive a $200 savings bond, and a one year membership in the Oil Pastel Society. Teachers and students will receive a generous supply of Sakura art materials and writing instruments, as well as gift certificates supplied by participating sponsors. A t-shirt imprinted with the winning artwork, an award certificate, and products are provided to all one hundred and fifty finalists.

Judging:
A six member panel consisting of San Francisco Bay Area art educators and artists judged the artwork for image originality, creativity, emotional content, oil pastel skills and age appropriateness.

Cray-Pas Oil Pastels:
Cray-Pas oil pastels were invented over 82 years ago in Japan to bring a professional-quality art material to children at an affordable price. Cray-Pas is available in three different levels that support an artist from young student to professional levels: Junior Artist®, Expressionist® and Specialist®.

Sakura Color Products of America, Inc.: http://www.sakuraofamerica.com

Museum of Children's Art: http://www.mocha.org

The Oil Pastel Society: http://www.oilpastelsociety.com

World Awareness Children's Museum: http://www.worldchildrensmuseum.org

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LINDA LYON
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