Inspiration sparks student art in Maple

Northwestern High School seniors share the background behind their pieces.

A pencil on paper drawing by Kayla Paulsen, a senior in honors art at Northwestern High School
Contributed / Charlie Hessel

“The inspiration behind this piece came from a core memory of my brothers and I taking a late night canoe paddle in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area. I chose to leave it black and white because it places more focus on the shading and adds more depth to the piece.”

— Kayla Paulsen, a senior at Northwestern High School

An acrylic painting on tagboard by Ella Cain, a Northwestern High School senior in honors art.
Contributed / Charlie Hessel

“My biggest inspiration has always been my dog, Trixie, whose love of the outdoors (and all things capable of being smelled) has led to her spending a great deal of time sniffing around my mother's flower bed in the summer. Trixie, with a colorful piece of cloth wrapped around her head, is surrounded by the flowers my mother grows, under a summer sky. Despite not being able to fully appreciate the vibrant beauty of flowers, she sure does love the smell.”

— Northwestern High School senior Ella Cain

A pencil on paper drawing by Natalie Sauer, a senior in the Northwestern High School honors art class.
Contributed / Charlie Hessel

“I’ve always been interested in drawing hands and the expressions they can convey through their intricate structure. For this piece, I wanted to create a sense of tension — the hand is caught in a mess of vines, unable to escape in fear of becoming more entangled. It accepts its fate and begins to relax, becoming one with nature. “


— Northwestern High School senior Natalie Sauer

Solon Springs students highlight local invasive species for annual contest.
Michele Conlan's third graders perform a play called "Character Matters" for families on Tuesday, May 30.
20 students were part of the Class of 2023.
The board will vote following a public interview process Wednesday, May 31.
Photos from Friday night's commencement ceremony.
Community partners helped the school's PTA offer a variety of activities for children and families to enjoy free of charge.
Student artwork was on display during the spring concert at Northern Lights Elementary School.
The digital artwork reflects nature, activities and popular culture.
TikTok users at Superior High School share their view on proposed bans of the app.
The action included a 5.97% base increase for the cost of living and a 2.03% increase to bring salaries more in line with other districts, according to District Administrator Frank Helquist.

An oil on canvas painting by Northwestern High School senior Brynn Hessel for honors art class.
Contributed / Charlie Hessel

“My inspiration for this piece was my friend's dog named Willow. Being my first animal painting, my primary focuses were on texture and using tints and shades to bring the painting to life.”

— Northwestern High School senior Brynn Hessel

This story is part of the Telegram's efforts to showcase the work of young people in the community. For more information on those efforts, contact reporter Maria Lockwood at

What To Read Next
Get Local