by Bruce Ferguson
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A fear frequently confronted by budding artists stems from the prospect of having their work put on display for others to critique. Art teachers have had the opportunity to teach their students to overcome this anxiety by example. Art teachers Nicole Walter, Carol Trost and Kim Jenkins all submitted work to the fourth annual Artist-Teacher Exhibition. Walter’s and Jenkin’s submissions were each selected for display at the exhibition.

The exhibition was open from Oct. 31 through Dec. 3. According to art instructional specialist and co-organizer of the show Aaron Stratten, the show serves both as a way of “recognizing art teachers” and “enhancing the educational experience” for their students.

John Adams, art resource teacher and Stratten’s co-organizer elaborated on the idea of on how the show helps the educational experience. He said art teachers should demonstrate to their students that it is worth taking a risk to put their artwork before an audience.

Walter, Jenkins and Trost submitted their work to the show along with over 200 other works from art teachers across Fairfax County. For each of them, the show offered a means to both display their artistic talent and teach their students.

Although Trost’s submission was not selected for display, she said the exhibition offered a means to teach her students that “part of putting your artwork out there for people to view, is to know some may not accept it.” In submitting her art to the show, she said she was teaching them by example.

An oil painting by Walter and a landscape photograph by Jenkins went on display at the Ernst Community Cultural Center at the Northern Virginia Community College alongside the works of 28 other artists.

According to Walters, submitting to show helped her “reconnect with the struggle of upcoming artists.” The exhibition reminded her of why she was an artist due to the way the audience responded to her work.