Glasgow Daily Times, Glasgow, KY


January 23, 2014

Glasgow High School freshman exhibits artwork

GLASGOW — Emmalee Lawrence has painted for as long as she remembers, and the Glasgow High School freshman is currently exhibiting her artwork in a solo show at the South Central Kentucky Cultural Center – a first for both the museum and Lawrence.

“I just love [art],” she said. “It’s one of my biggest passions.”

She began studying art in elementary school and has taken several independent classes, some through the Barren County Community Education Program. She has also studied with local art instructors such as Todd Woodward, Jennifer Fritsch, Beverly Elliott, Cassie Lloyd and Jane Kehrt.

Lawrence was selected to exhibit her work at the cultural center, “because she is cross-talented,” said Patty Hughes, who taught Lawrence in a community education class.

“She works in so many different mediums and being so young and being able to do that ... so far, I’ve found nothing she can’t do,” Hughes said. “We just decided the community as a whole would enjoy seeing her work.”

Lawrence currently studies art with Edwana Goodson at GHS.

“I am so proud of Emmalee and blessed to have her in my class,” Goodson said. “To have a solo art show at any age is impressive, but to have the body of works necessary as a freshman is amazing.”

Lawrence enjoys working with a variety of mediums, including watercolor, acrylics, charcoal and pencil.

“Emmalee is excited to tackle any medium or assignment I present to her,” Goodson said. “Because of her amazing passion to create, she produces fresh and personal pieces.”

Lawrence recently worked with ceramics for the first time, and told Goodson she was “grateful to get the chance to work with clay.”

“She truly cherishes her gift and making art, and I cannot wait to see where her passion leads her,” Goodson said.

Lawrence is inspired by “just whatever is around me,” she said.

If she had to pick a favorite painting in the exhibit, Lawrence said it would be a toss-up between a mixed-media piece titled “Exotic Flower” and a pencil drawing titled “The Pearl.”

To create “Exotic Flower,” she took wall paste, plastered it onto a canvas and then painted over it, she said.

“The Pearl,” meanwhile, was a drawing she did at the last second.

“That was one thing I actually had to do for Beta (Club),” Lawrence said. “I found her online. She’s a little girl from Uganda, and the name, ‘The Pearl,’ is actually what Uganda is called in Africa. It is the pearl of Africa.”

Lawrence’s mother, Kelly, on the other hand, favors a watercolor painting of Lawrence and some girls who performed with the African Children’s Choir when they visited Glasgow a few months ago.

“They stayed with us while they were here,” Lawrence said. “They came back for Thanksgiving and I painted them that, and they really loved it. So, that was cool.”

The title of that painting is “Sisters.” It won first place at the state Beta convention and will advance to the national Beta convention.

“Exotic Flower” also took a first-place award at the state Beta convention, and “The Pearl” took third-place.

Kelly Lawrence said she likes “Sisters” because “when she met those young ladies, after they left, Emmalee said, ‘Momma, I believe for the first time I’ve seen the face of God, because they were so honest and genuine and everything was so new seeing things through their eyes.’

“Emmalee ended up getting baptized not long after their visit. It made such an impression on her personally,” Lawrence said. That’s kind of my favorite, just because I love those girls.”

The Lawrences stay in touch with the girls via Facebook while they continue to tour the United States.

Lawrence has also been commissioned to do paintings and is currently working on one that will be a surprise gift for a client’s wife on Valentine’s Day.

Her artwork will be on display at the cultural center through February.

She is the daughter of Chris and Kelly Lawrence.

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