The Undiscovered Artists of the Senior Class

Maddie Otero '20, Staff Writer

As all eyes turn towards the St. Luke’s sports teams with their important championship games, it is also important to acknowledge and celebrate the artists in our community. Among the talented seniors are Brody Menzies, Anna Raleigh, and Emma Scanlan. 

Brody Menzies is a dedicated and accomplished young artist. He has been in the St. Luke’s Blues Band since middle school. He plays the lead bass guitar and piano for the group; however, music is only one of his artistic interests. 

Menzies explained, “I have made films in the past, and that’s what I want to continue to do in college and such. But, a close second is also photography.” 

He is dreaming big and plans to continue to pursue his passion for art at the collegiate level. 

Menzies continued, “I am hoping to go to film school and then hopefully be able to direct movies in the future and/or take photos.” 

Menzies further explained why he has such an affinity for the arts: “Obviously, I love the creating aspect of it, but then I [also] just love the community aspect of it. I love working with friends, with my peers, to create something bigger than each individual person.” 

Although art is often seen as a hobby by many of his classmates, Menzies grew a more serious interest by 8th or 9th grade: “I went to an arts camp for the first time, and I started being able to understand how to do that type of stuff.” 

He fostered his love of film and photography at art camp, but has been playing piano and bass for many years. Menzies has been playing the piano since the young age of seven and played the upright bass in elementary school until he switched to electric bass in fifth grade. When asked who his biggest inspirations are, Menzies referred to director of Hereditary, Ari Aster, and jazz pianist, Berry Harris. 

Anna Raleigh is the epitome of an undiscovered talent. In the words of Mrs.Yankura, “everything she does is great.” She is a gifted painter, musician, and photographer. Raleigh sings in the St. Luke’s Blues Band and has also taken several art classes over the course of her education. Although she has a passion for the arts, she says that she doesn’t want to pursue a career in the field: “I mean I’m just not driven enough I guess. I am passionate about art, but I want to go into the sciences and incorporate art into my work.”  

When asked why she loves art, she replied, “It takes you outside of the physical things, the physical world, and it allows me to express myself. There is something just so different, so therapeutic about art.” 

Anna has always been interested in art. From a young age her parents would encourage it. Anna shared, “One of my first memories was playing with one of those music toy things. I also drew a lot in art class. There has not been a time when art wasn’t a part of my life.” 

Aside from her family, Anna finds inspiration from artists in all different places. Tommy Champion is a St. Luke’s graduate who went to music school and is currently pursuing a singing career in Tennessee. Additionally, the famous Henry Matisse is one of Anna’s inspirations: “There is something about his paintings that [is] different, original.” Last, but certainly not least, one of Raleigh’s neighbors is also a talented painter, whose “detailed and impressive” work encourages Anna to take more artistic chances.  

Emma Scanlan, like Menzies, enjoys multiple artistic pursuits. She is a ballerina and a photographer. Aside from her accomplishments on stage, Scanlan likes art because “it’s accessible and anyone can do it. Once you take the classes, you understand more about why you do certain things and what people are drawn to.” 

Emma has taken several photography courses at St. Luke’s. She explained, “I began photography as a freshman here just because I wanted to do an art class, and I found out I really liked it.” 

Though she does not want to pursue a career in the arts, she wants to continue with dancing and photography as hobbies. She appreciates that photography allows her to make her own creative decisions. Scanlan said, “You can kind of, go your own way with things. You might be given a project in class, but everyone’s going to come back with something completely different. Specifically about photography, I like that there’s a lot of different kinds. You don’t have to just take pictures of landscapes or portraits; you can kind of do a lot of different types of photography, but it’s all using the same skills and information.” 

While photographer is a newer pursuit for Scanlan, she has been dancing since she was only two years old. She finds inspiration from two decorated dancers: Sarah Mearns and Tyler Eeck. Scanlan commented, “They are two dancers that, whether it’s online or if you actually go see a show, you can tell that there is emotion behind it and that they really love what they do.” 

The talent that it requires to contribute to a team is very much matched with the talents of our senior artists. They find inspiration in unexpected places and dedicate their time to working and improving their passions. Let’s make sure we take the time to celebrate our artists along with our athletes.