First published in the April 22 print issue of the South Pasadena Review.
When the South Pasadena Unified School District moved its offices to 1100 El Centro St. — just across from its longtime home at 1020 El Centro — this past July, there was a wall that became a focal point to the lobby.
Superintendent Geoff Yantz said he thought it would be a good idea to have a student create sketches of all the schools in the district that would be on display on the wall, according to school officials. He broached the topic with art teacher Aimee Levie-Hultman, to see if she could recommend an artist. Previously, the district had a sketch of the former headquarters, which was used for many years.
Levie-Hultman then contacted senior Terry Song for the project and Song agreed to take on the challenge.
Song said she used a program that mixed Adobe Photoshop with a Clip Studio Paint to create the sketches. She said she feels more comfortable using that digital medium, which helped make the creations look like pencil sketches.
She said using a digitized version will make it easier to scan because with traditional pencil-sketched artwork, some of the details could be lost.
Plus, Song said, “that’s what I’m more comfortable with.”
Song’s artwork — which captures Arroyo Vista, Marengo and Monterey elementary schools, South Pasadena Middle School and South Pasadena High School — was unveiled recently during a school board meeting. She said it took about 10 1/2 hours to complete the five sketches. With some of them, she could tweak the changes. However, with a few of them, she had to start from scratch if the angle wasn’t right.
For example, with the sketch of Marengo Elementary, to some people passing by, it may appear to be a one-story building, but in Song’s sketch, it shows that there’s a two-story building that’s part of the school.
Song said enjoys working with product design, or concept art, when making her artistic creations.
“It’s basically like designing something for film or games — every aspect of a fictional work,” she said.
She’s been drawing as a hobby since she was a child, but she started taking it seriously when she was a sophomore in high school. She also works on the school’s Tiger Newspaper. Last year, she was an illustrator; this year she is design editor.
After high school, she plans to attend Pasadena City College to do her electives, then transfer. Her first choice? ArtCenter College of Design in Pasadena.