Cloud County Community College Art Show Goes Virtual


Cloud County Community College’s annual high school Art Show has gone virtual in 2021.

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, which has limited the number of in-person events at the college, Art instructor Amy Kern coordinated a Virtual Art Show for area schools. Nine high schools submitted more than 90 pieces of artwork to be judged virtually.

This year’s digital format allowed each school to enter up to 10 pieces of work, which were then judged by Kern, Brigitte Bruna and Jennifer Taphorn.

Bruna graduated from K-State in 2011, and has been freelancing in the visual communications industry for the past eight years. Several of her most notable clients are the Department of Communications and Agricultural Education at K-State and the Oz Museum in Wamego.

Taphorn is the owner of Taphorn Design, and is a graduate of Fort Hays State University. She has worked in the design industry as an ad production manager for The Taos News, and a production manager, designer and web designer for The Taos Magazine. She is currently freelancing and working in the technical publications department for Landoll Company, LLC.

Kern has been the instructor in visual communications at Cloud for the past two years. She is a graduate of Fort Hays and received her master’s degree from Savannah College of Art and Design. Prior to teaching at Cloud, she was marketing director at LW Marketing, an advertising agency in Florida.

Schools who participated in the 2021 Virtual Art Show were: Centralia, Southern Cloud, Frankfort, Little River, Republic County, Rock Hills, Smith Center, Washington County, and Pike Valley.

Best of Show award went to Ye Gang Lee, from Republic County for acrylic painting.

The “best of” awards for each category are as follows:

  • Best of Oil: Maggie Armstrong, Frankfort
  • Best of Acrylic: Ye Gang Lee, Republic County
  • Best of Watercolor: Kacla Shirley, Little River
  • Best of Drawing: Abigail Rose, Frankfort
  • Best of Mixed Media: Carril Rego, Smith Center
  • Best of Photography: Carolina Barraza, Pike Valley
  • Best of Ceramics: Clarissa Koch, Centralia
  • Best of Jewelry: Carolina Barraza, Pike Valley

A slideshow of all the award winning artwork can be found at:

Derek Nester
Derek Nester
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2021 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.

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