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The Student News Site of Pembroke Pines Charter High School

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The Student News Site of Pembroke Pines Charter High School

CHAT News

Moore than art: Rayana Moore wins 4th at Congressional Art Competition

The+art+piece+that+won+Rayana+4th+at+the+Congressional+Art+Competition.+The+painting+was+inspired+by+Rayanas+Jamaican+heritage.
Donated by Rayana Moore
The art piece that won Rayana 4th at the Congressional Art Competition. The painting was inspired by Rayana’s Jamaican heritage.

“I entered it because… might as well?”

In between a kaleidoscope of paintbrushes, pencils, and colors, Rayana Moore painstakingly puts the final touches on her masterpiece. What began as a mere addition for her AP Drawing Portfolio now stands as a symbol of her artistic skills and cultural pride. On April 3, PPCHS junior Rayana Moore would storm into the spotlight by placing 4th in the highly competitive Congressional Art Competition in a dazzling display of creativity and cultural homage.

The Congressional Art Competition is a prestigious nationwide event sponsored by the House of Representatives. High school students across the country are encouraged to compete against artists in their district, and submit their pieces to be judged and potentially displayed for a year in the Capitol. “[Ms. Vasquez] first brought it up to us, and told us we could enter if we wanted to, and I did!” says Rayana. 

Because there was no required theme or medium to adhere to, Rayana wanted to submit a piece that reflected her identity and upbringing. “My [AP] portfolio is about my identity and who I am. What I entered ended up being a piece from there. Since I’m Jamaican, I was thinking about trying to represent how it feels growing up around that kind of culture,” she explains. 

For Rayana, there was no better place to paint than her grandmother’s kitchen. It was the perfect symbol of where she grew up, yet also reflected her culture. However, trying to accurately portray this unique blend was a lengthy process. “I spent the whole first week in class just sketching out everything. It took a while! All of the second week was spent painting the sky. I also made sure to use Jamaican rasta colors (red, green, yellow, black) and stick to that color palette,” she describes. The gouache painting depicts Rayana’s family members in her grandmother’s kitchen, and is a vivid capture of the past. “And somehow, it won something!” she adds modestly. 

The painting, which took around 10-15 hours to complete, demonstrated Rayana’s meticulous eye and passion for perfectionism, which placed her 4th in Florida’s 25th congressional district. “When I found out I was top 15 I was already freaking out, so ending up 4th was just, wow! Cypress Bay had the most works entered, I think like 36 kids? And only one or two of them placed in the top 10, so it was even more shocking,” she recounts.

While Rayana remains uncertain about pursuing art professionally, her interest in industry art, particularly in gaming and animation, speaks volumes about her potential and what she will do. Affectionately known as “the art kid,” Rayana’s remarkable journey from art hobbyist to award winner serves as an inspiration to aspiring artists everywhere.

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About the Contributor
Iris Lee
Iris Lee, Features Editor
Hi, I’m Iris! This is my fourth year writing for The CHAT, and I’m this year’s Features Editor. Previously I was the Student Life Editor, and I love writing stories about campus news and our students, so I’m super excited for this year! I have two dogs, and I like to play the piano. Feel free to contact me anytime at [email protected]!

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