Meet the artist

John Sevier students hear message of inspiration from visiting artist

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From press releases

Fourth grade students at John Sevier Elementary, like most children, enjoy art and are eager to learn about artists, art forms, and new techniques. While art is an important part of the curriculum at John Sevier, having the opportunity to meet a real artist is a wonderful treat. On Wednesday, Nov. 22, Norma Jean Brown visited at John Sevier to the delight of all the young artists in the fourth grade.

Brown, a Maryville resident, is a freelance artist who often shares her experiences and skills with students throughout the area. Her program included a display of her work. In addition to a free print, each child took home an inspiring message that offered encouragement to anyone who enjoys painting or drawing. Brown credited her passion for art to her mother, who was an accomplished musician, and her success to the encouragement her parents gave her as a child.

"I sold my first picture at age twelve," said Brown. She received an outstanding achievement award from Purdue University as a young teen, and, even while in high school in Indiana, her expertise was in high demand for work on school decorations and murals painted in buildings throughout the community.

Brown has continued painting as an adult and works in pencil, pen and ink, pastel, oil, and acrylic. Her subjects include portraits, landscapes, animal prints, religious art and more. Brown’s focus for much of her presentation with the students was on the reproduction process. She explained how the four-color process works in printing and encouraged students to save their artwork and have it reproduced to share with others.

No one was more delighted by Brown’s presentation than Haley Cunningham, her granddaughter - a student in Debbie Oxendine’s fourth grade class. The students were thrilled by the presentation/exhibit and were so thankful to receive a
print to remember Brown’s visit.

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