Young Artists

The Young Artists’ Conference is an annual event for aspiring artists in elementary school to showcase their artwork and take part in a series of workshops.  The school district has offered this unique opportunity to our students since 1987.

Over 120 students, from grades 4 to 7, are selected to participate in the Young Artists' Conference.  Each school has a selection committee which reviews a variety of 2-dimensional artwork submitted by students.  Based on a set of criteria, the selection committee would choose between 2 and 6 students to represent their school at the Young Artists’ Conference. 

In recent years, the Young Artists' Conference has been held at Thompson Rivers University with many workshops held in the university’s art studios.  Students choose from a variety of workshops and receive instruction from community professional artists and outstanding art educators.

The following is a sample list of workshops:

  1. Acrylic Paintings – Transform a plain white canvas into your own personality, using techniques that incorporate the concepts of hot/cool colours, texture, balance and overall value.  Let loose and paint freely using the methods provided.  Walk away with a painting to proudly hang on your wall or give as a gift. 
  2. Clay Masks – Using clay, students are guided through making their own individual clay mask.  By using a variety of textures, each mask is uniquely different.
  3. Beautiful Batik – Easy fabric painting; we will create unique fabric flags using a variety of techniques! 
  4. Glass Mosaics – Learn the beautiful ancient art of Mosaics while creating a Mosaic Mirror using glass and mirror scraps.
  5. Watercolour Laboratory – Students will learn a variety of traditional and experimental watercolour techniques. This workshop will be half art studio/half science laboratory! You will discover different ways to turn your watercolour experiments into cards, ornaments and collages.
  6. 3-D Art – Using 3-D glasses...and a lesson in light, and the will create artwork that jumps right off the page!! We will use paint, felt pens, and paper to create pictures that you could fall right into.  You get to keep your artwork and 3-D glasses to use when we are done to AMAZE your friends and family!
  7. Aboriginal Traditional Pouches – A hands-on art activity creating a buckskin 'necklace' pouch that includes an informational session on types of leather, the tanning process and the various kinds and uses of pouches. The students will decorate their pouches with traditional symbols and/or simple beading.
  8. Painting With Acrylics – Follow along step by step to create a live painting, setting up colours and learning the process and techniques as the painting evolves. Each student will feel confident every step of the way and have a beautiful finished painting at the end of the class.
  9. Gelli Plate Printing – Learn the art of Gelli plate printing!  It’s a wonderful way of creating unique mono-prints! You will be walked through how to use this wonderful technique as you explore different ways to create patterns and designs for amazing prints! This will be fun!
  10. Sumi-e (Ink Picture) Painting - Travel back in time to ancient Japan where they only had ink sticks, bamboo brushes and rice paper to create marvelous images of scenery, creatures and Manga!  We will explore how to use this awesome medium to create a Kamloops inspired scene and a creature!

Following the Conference, an Art Show is held to showcase student artwork at the Old Courthouse Upstairs Gallery.  The pieces are displayed for the public and a reception for the young artists and their parents is held during the show.   Several of the wonderful pieces of artwork are selected to be framed and displayed at our School Board Office for a period of one year.


  • Christy Gauley, Henry Grube Education Centre
  • Cori Wickes, Committee Chair, McGowan Park Elementary


  • Conference:  May 2018