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My name is Julia Maher. I am seventeen years old and I live in North Massapequa. I am currently a senior attending Farmingdale High School. Ever since I was a young child art has been my passion. I started drawing when I was four years old. My grandmother had kept every drawing I ever made for her and recently created a beautiful scrapbook showing my progress as an artist as I grew older.

 What I love about drawing is that it comes naturally to me. I am a fast worker and once I have an image in my mind, it just flows so easily. I can sit down for hours and just draw, without getting bored. It gives me a chance to express myself in a peaceful and therapeutic way. Drawing helps relieve my stress and takes my mind away from my busy schedule. 
In creating this work I used black and white charcoal to create a dark, eerie feeling. The girl in my drawing is a representation of someone very close to me. She struggled with anxiety, as do many teens in our generation. With all the stress and work loads placed on our backs at school and even at home, an innocent teen can transform into an anxious and detached individual. 

In my piece the words in the background portray thoughts and emotions that are running through the young woman's head. Irritable, compulsive, alone, delusional, irrational, suspicious; all words that relate directly to a developing illness in our society; paranoia. I used red pastel to emphasize the word paranoia in the composition. Through this piece I want others who struggle with this issue to know that they are not alone and they can overcome their negative thoughts to create themselves a more optimistic life.

Julia Maher - Farmingdale High School $1000.00  College  Scholarship Winner
Paranoia/Slipping Away From Sanity
by Julia Maher