Guilford senior among eight students to receive regional art awards

Shannon Hallstein, a senior at Guilford High School, has won four Regional Gold Keys in the 2015 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards.

The awards were announced earlier this month. Hallstein is among eight Rockford Public Schools students who won Gold Keys, which is the highest award in the regional competition. As Gold Key winners, their work is automatically considered for national recognition in New York. Scholastic National Medalists will be announced on March 16.

Shannon Hallstein's "Sun Kissed" was a Scholastic Gold Key regional winner.

Shannon Hallstein’s “Sun Kissed” was a Scholastic Gold Key regional winner.

Hallstein won four Gold Keys in all: two top awards in the drawing and illustration category and one each in the art portfolio and painting categories. A  student in the BAMIT (Business, Arts, Modern World Languages and Information Technology) academy, she says her dream is to work as an animator or visual development artist for Pixar or DreamWorks. “Ever since I could hold a crayon, I loved art,” Hallstein said.

She had a lot of opportunity to be creative, as her family never had a TV in the house. She made paper dolls with her sister and sat at the kitchen table and doodled all day.

She also credits her Guilford art teacher, Lisa Doll, for forming her as an artist.  Mrs. Doll taught her about good composition, she says, and to be attuned to composition in every piece she does.

People think about art as an individual exercise, but Hallstein believes she has become a better artist because of collaboration. The Guilford art students have daily critiques of each other’s work. “Everybody works together to fix the problems in a piece. It’s a team effort,” Hallstein said.

In addition to the Gold Key awards, Hallstein earned two Silver Keys and five honorable mentions in the regional contest.

The other RPS 205 students who earned Gold Keys are: Benjamin Bear, senior; Chau Pham, senior; Camille Sanchez, senior; Taylor Gorsuch, junior; Alexandria White, sophomore; and Shanida Younvanich, sophomore, all of Auburn; and Chase Pottinger, Jefferson.

Other students from these high schools and students from RESA were among the 24 young artists recognized districtwide, including the Silver Key or honorable mention categories. Good luck and congratulations to all.

Mary Kaull is communications coordinator for the Rockford Public Schools. Please like RPS 205 on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram.







  1. Mary Kaull

    Thank you for your comment. We do our best to profile all of our RPS 205 schools, students and staff. And, the RPS 205 blog is written by district staff, not the Register Star. Regarding the student whom you say was “relegated” to the last paragraph: Chase Pottinger was the sole focus of a recent blog item. That item, in turn, became the centerpiece of the Learning page of the Register Star on Monday, March 2.

  2. Jennifer

    Wow. What a surprise. The article’s headline is about how a Guilford student won an award, despite the fact that Auburn High School had SIX students who won the same award. The young man at Jefferson has also been relegated to an afterthouht at the bottom of the article. Yet again, I am struck by the lack of attention given to our other excellent students in RPS who DON’T attend Guilford, and how the Rockford Register Star (which should be dubbed the East Side Register Star) has, for the umpteenth time, failed to represent its population. Pathetic.

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