Friday, April 9, 2021

Graduation, Senior Week, Student Art Work & A Collaboration between CC Theatre, Music, & WIQH

Difficult to imagine we are but one week from April Break. I write to highlight student artwork, promote the upcoming theater production, and provide a few details for senior celebrations as they approach the end of their K-12 experience.  Nobody would have predicted an ending like this one for the class of 2021. 

Life is full of paradoxes. Next week, next month, or next year will bring uncertainty, yet we all must plan for a future however uncertain. In the face of significant uncertainties, prediction remains a fool's bargain and all plans are subject to change; however, with the help of the Student Government, community members, and dedicated CCHS staff, we are hopeful the planned celebrations will be enjoyable and memorable.

We look forward with hope and plan with confidence, as we approach April break and plan for more students arriving on campus every day on April 26th. Additional information regarding the 26th will arrive before the break. Enjoy the day and weekend.


I am excited to report our graduation ceremony, weather permitting, will be held as planned on 5 June. The ceremony will begin at 9am.  If inclement weather requires we postpone the ceremony, (can we please catch a break and not deal with inclement weather), we will hold the ceremony on 6 June or the first day the sun shines on us.  Additional details will be forthcoming, and all plans are subject to change, but the state of Massachusetts is allowing additional guests this year.  At the moment, each graduate is permitted 6 guests, assuming the venue can meet the guidelines listed on the document below. We are confident this can happen safely at our facility. As noted, I will share additional information as we get closer to graduation.  

Covid 19 Safety Standards for Commencement and Graduation Ceremonies

Senior Week Schedule - May 25 - 28

May 25:
Tuesday Day: Group 1 Kimballs
Tuesday Evening: Senior Awards Night

May 26:
Wednesday AM: Senior Breakfast
Wednesday Day: Prifti Day of Service

May 27:
Thursday Evening: Senior Banquet/BBQ class video and yearbook signing

May 28:
Friday Day: Group 2  Kimballs

CC Theatre, Music, and WIQH's Collaboration: A Reading of Rod Serling's Twilight Zone Scripts TONIGHT!

We hope you'll gather 'round the "radio" and join us for CC Theatre's "Reading of Rod Serling's Twilight Zone Scripts."  Performances are tonight, tomorrow evening, and Saturday evening starting at 6:45pm with dinner music performed by members of the CCHS Orchestra.  The readings begin at 7:00pm with live original music that was composed specifically for our production.  All sound you hear this evening (voice acting, sound effects, and music) is being created live from the CCHS auditorium and broadcast over WIQH.  To make our production accessible to all audience members, we are also running closed captions and a live American Sign Language interpretation via Zoom.  Check out or for details and links!

In case you haven't had a chance to check out the auditorium setup during an after-school rehearsal, I'm including the link to a short rehearsal clip video shot by Adam Gooder's film student and CC Theatre actor Jack Gilmore.  Some context:  We start in the auditorium cross aisle, where the actors are seated spaced out on either side.  As we turn to walk onstage, the folks wearing headphones include the stage management team, director, and sound designer.  On the stage, we meander through the eight sound effects stations, each one staffed by a Foley artist responsible for specific effects created live during the broadcast.  We conclude the tour with the pit band performing the live music written especially for CCHS's production.

Thank you, as always, for your support!

- Melissa Charych, CC Theatre program Director and Teacher

Character Design

A selection from Mr. Pickman’s drawing classes and independent studies.

This exhibition showcases the creative inventions of students who are independently pursuing the art of original character design. 

Over the few years, I began noticing an ever-increasing trend of students drawing unique characters in the margins of sketchbooks, notebooks as well as digital drawings created on laptops and tablets. The expressive drawing skills, deliberately emotive color schemes, and narrative details are so compelling, I was inspired to exhibit them in a formal venue.

These works are clearly reminiscent of classic comics, graphic novels, and superhero posters, yet they are very modern in theme, narrative, and contemporary social commentary. There is a range of finished works and annotated sketches that reveal a robust creative process.

For me, each image tells a fascinating story and provides inspired and compassionate insight into the human condition.

Samara Reid

When I make a character, I try to explore their personality by drawing them. It’s kind of like spending quality time with your kids. The more time you spend with them, the better you get to know them and the closer you two get. I try to show personality in the character’s design using shapes and body language. If a character is mean and prickly, then I will probably make their face sharp, and give them aggressive body language. Using color is also very important to me in character design. Color lets me give tone to the character, and colors symbolize certain things to us, so I can imply what a character is like based on color choice.  Like, if I wanted to make a character seem warm and welcoming, I would probably use tones of toasty orange and soft peach. But overall, my goal in character design is just to have fun! 

Celise Isaac

I've been drawing my whole life.  I remember first getting into art because of my father.  He doesn't draw nearly as much anymore, but he's a very talented artist.  When I was young and living in my old town, my dad was taking a college art class and I, being the competitive person that I am, immediately wanted to be as good as him by the time I was his age.  Over quarantine, my art has evolved a lot, and I think I've finally hit my stride stylistically after more than a year of struggling to draw in a way that I connected with. I used to try and draw exactly like others on social media platforms, and always got frustrated when my art didn't look the same.  But now that I've learned to love and accept the way Celise draws, I've realized that it's best to put my ego aside and truly appreciate the joy of being an artist.  This change in mindset has really reflected through my recent art and because of that, I wanted to share some of my latest pieces in this Original Character Gallery! I hope you enjoy!

Mo (Naomi Kablotski)

Art has always been something I’ve fallen back onto, no matter the circumstance. Recently, after many unforeseen circumstances in my own life, I’ve been comforted and inspired by multiple popular content creators and their personas. My goal for this year has been to make as much art as possible - and simply because these creators are so sweet and engaging, a lot of the drawings that I have made involve them and their characters. After spending multiple hours trying to teach myself Adobe Photoshop, I made it my goal to create art every day, to both improve my skills and broaden my knowledge regarding the software. If any aspiring artists like me are reading this, I want you to be patient with yourself! I am not, nor do I claim to be some art genius. But, if I know one thing, it’s that drawing most certainly isn’t some ultra-rare talent you’re born with. If you’re genuinely passionate about what you do, be patient with yourself and your capabilities. I know you can do it. Just don’t give up!

Rebecca Sutter

I recently started drawing digitally, but it's a really fun medium. I think it makes it especially easy to try out multiple styles or color pallets. It was a lot of fun to play around with these aspects in terms of character design. When drawing most of the time I have a go-to personal style, but with some of these pieces, I tried to branch out more. I took a lot of inspiration from the vibe of a few different video games for different drawings and I also did some experiments with line-art and coloring.

Taylor Stainton

Here are 3 of my favorite characters :) The first is JimJim. He's a small frog like creature who likes jet-packs and can make candy with his psychic powers! He's just a cute little guy :) Next in order is Fox. Fox is a kind of forest spirit. His job is basically to protect the forest and all wildlife in it. He's not really any age in particular since he's a spirit, so he can take any form he likes. This is just his favorite human form, which is just about the only form we can see. Third is C-13. People call him Cy, though, because C-13 isn't exactly the most normal name. He was made in a factory, so he's very young. He was taken out before he was meant to be let out, so there's a few pieces of tape holding him together and some loose wires at the back of his neck.

Aurora Wu

One of the characters represents the oasis, while the other one represents the forest. They both yield life, which is represented by the color green. In the woods, forest fires are desperation and destruction; in the desert, the oasis being born is hope and rebirth.

Annaliese King

These are all concept art of original characters for a fantasy novel I am writing, all drawn digitally with a tablet. If I had to guess I would say they took me between 45 minutes to an hour to complete the simplest pieces and upwards of 3 hours to make the most detailed one. Each piece is colored, shaded, and highlighted, and all except for one are fully lined. I decided to leave one of the drawings in the rough draft stage because of how much I enjoy the look of messy line-art. Each character looks very distinct from one another; however, I am
constantly tweaking their outfit designs from one drawing to another, as you might be able to notice. Though these works are far from perfect, I am proud of them not only because I went out of my comfort zone to make them, but I believe they have substantially captured the essence of my imagination. There is nothing more magical than being able to translate your mind into something real.

Isabela Cattafe

This was a character concept I came up with at the start of the quarantine that sat in my beat-up sketchbook for nearly a year. Originally just a girl with an eel tail, I wanted to see if I could push the design further. I tried to incorporate more storytelling details into her appearance, such as the bite mark left by an eel on her forearm, suggesting that she didn't always look this way.

Kendall Somol


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