Three Students Advance to National Judging in 2018 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards

Update to story 04.09.18:

Michael Deng '18 earned national recognition with a Silver Medal in the 2018 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards in the Film & Animation category for his film Under the Windhorse.

National winners have been identified by panels of creative professionals as the most talented young artists and writers in the nation. This year, nearly 350,000 works of art and writing were submitted. Only the top 1% were recognized at the national level.
For a full list of medalists, visit  Congratulations to Michael on this acheivement.
Woodberry students piled up numerous honors in the 2018 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, and three students advanced out of the regional competition to national judging. Michael Deng ’18 won two golden keys in the film and animation category for movies he’s produced during his time at Woodberry. Both Under the Windhorse and I'm Your Brother advanced to national judging.

Michael shot Under the Windhorse in August 2016 in the mountainous region of Liangshan in Sichuan province. In it, he records the story of a college student who returns from studying in Beijing to her home region to teach Chinese in a remote village. China’s Liangshan Mountains are home to Tibetan people whose geographical isolation limits their educational and career opportunities.  Michael screened his film for the student body of Woodberry Forest in April 2017 and was supported in his project by the Class of 2008 Community Service grant, which helped him purchase or rent the equipment needed for the film. “Woodberry gave me the resources I needed to pursue my passion,” Michael says. 

Michael also won a silver key in the dramatic script category for I’m Your BrotherMax Johns ’18 won a gold key for his short story, “The Neighborhood,” and Rhew Diegl ’20 won a gold key for his short story, “The Court of Law.” Those also advance to national judging. Rhew said his story was inspired by reading James Joyce’s Finnegan’s Wake“Joyce liked to hide little tidbits of jokes or pop culture references in his writing, so I tried to do the same with The Court of Law,” Rhew said. “Part of what editing with peers teaches me is how to explain myself and hold myself accountable for what I write; before edits, the story contain a lot of images and scenarios that seemed cool but didn’t line up together, and the editors are pushing me to fix these flaws.” 

Other honorees for Woodberry in the regional competition include:

Blythe Brewster ’20, silver key in science fiction/fantasy for “Attack” and honorable mention in poetry for two works: “War of Words” and “E Pluribus Unum.”
Riley Fletcher ’19, silver key in poetry for “The Bunnyman of Colchester Road.”
Willis He ’21, silver key in photography for his photo "Underground King."
Jang Woo Park ’19, silver key in the memoir category for “To Myself at Home” and honorable mention in photography for "Volar."
Luke Christy ’21, honorable mention in poetry for “A Mother’s Withdrawal” and “The Camper of Life.”
Trip Hurley ’18, honorable mention in mixed media for "Where Are Our Minds?" and honorable mention in photography for "Sete."
Kyle Kauffman ’18, honorable mention in poetry for “Backwash.”

Several of the poems, photographs and paintings that won awards were featured in the most recent edition of The Talon, Woodberry’s student-edited literary magazine. Others are expected to be published in the spring issue.
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