Javier Hernandez, a senior at Pioneer Valley High School in Santa Maria, painted an image of a girl emerging from water to draw a metaphor between her and the nation coming out of the pandemic.
Titled “Let’s Get Over This Together,” Javier’s painting was the second runner up in the recent Congressional Art Competition, offered through the office of U.S. Rep. Salud Carbajal, D-Santa Barbara.
“I began my painting with the purpose of representing agriculture and the essence of the country and region I live in,” Javier said in a news release. “While working on painting, something unexpected struck everyone in what we now know as COVID-19.
“I modified my painting to show what our country and the whole world was going through. It comes from the message I want to share with everyone about overcoming ourselves and overcoming all the obstacles that come our way.”
The water symbolizes COVID-19, and the girl has a mask next to her hand. The red and white lines, along with the stars, are part of the American flag.
Hunter McCormick, a fellow PV Panther, submitted a piece entitled “A Far Away Place.” It is also featured in Rep. Carbajal’s 2021 Congressional Art Competition gallery.
The gallery includes outstanding submissions from talented high school students across the Central Coast. To view the art, go to ca24artcompetition.com.
Shanda Herrera, principal at Pioneer Valley High School, described the effort, talent and creativity of both young artists as “awesome.”