Chippenham students thanking heroes from the bottom of their art

Artist Emily Lovatt and her subject, Mike Jones

Subject Sarah Smith with artist Abbie Cross,

First published in News by , Senior reporter

Previously unsung heroes have been immortalised in art by Chippenham students.

Abbeyfield School asked the community for nominations of people who give their time to help others, so they can become the subject of a portrait.

The aim was both to give the nominees recognition and to inspire students in their art project.

Abbeyfield held an exhibition of the finished pieces last Thursday, as friends and relatives of nominees were invited to admire about 30 works created by children aged from 11 to 14.

One subject, Mike Jones of Chippenham, was nominated by Springboard Opportunity Centre, a nursery for children with special needs.

He was drawn by Emily Lovatt, 14, who said: “Mike dedicates his time as a volunteer driver for Springboard, driving children with special needs to and from school.

“Inspired by what he does, I chose to draw him using pen after being influenced by the Biro artist Mark Powell.”

Anne Reeves, who does business administration for Springboard, said: “We cover the whole of North Wiltshire and, for a number of years, Mike has supported us by making sure children can access the services here.

“He’s quite shy, but I think he was quietly thrilled to see the drawing and have that acknowledgement. He was overwhelmed as well, because Emily was only 14.”

Fellow artist Tia Chiu, 14, painted Clive Carey, a pastoral manager at the school.

She said: “He was nominated because he ran the Chippenham half marathon to raise £600 for a children’s hospital in Antigua.

“I chose to paint mine in a Pop Art style, because no one else was doing it and I thought it would be cool. I used felt tip and acrylic paint, which I’d never used before, but I really like the thick, bold colours.”

Harry Law, 13, who chose to paint a fellow pupil, said: “I’ve painted Charlotte Acton, who is a Year 10 student, because she can fly a glider solo, which is really impressive.”

Refreshments were provided by the Abbeyfield Caterers.

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