Karea Bailey’s love of art began when she was just three years old. As she grew up, she eagerly explored that interest, becoming a skilled artist who works in a number of mediums, including photography, painting and drawing. Her artistic talents also include design, presentation, art restoration and singing.
Bailey transferred from Old Dominion University to John Tyler Community College to study photography and film. It is her passion for photography that is dramatically exhibited in Nickel Bridge, her artwork that claimed this year’s John Tyler Community College Foundation Art Award. The black and white digital photograph features a serene, almost hypnotic view, of the James River with the Boulevard Bridge, known as the Nickel Bridge to long-time Richmonders, in the background. Bailey says she had driven on the bridge many times before, but had never had the opportunity to stand back and look at its architectural beauty until the day she and her fiancé took a walk on a trail near Belle Isle.
The site of the bridge surrounded by the calm waters of the James so inspired her that she took this award-winning photograph.
“There was stiff competition among this year’s entries, but Karea captured the hearts of the judges with her beguiling photo of a beloved Richmond landmark – the Nickel Bridge,” noted Beverley Dew, executive director of the JTCC Foundation. “Her artist’s eye must have been laser focused as she snapped the celebrated scene. Karea’s talent shines through the image for everyone to enjoy, but for those of us who grew up here, and actually played on the banks of the James below the bridge, we see much more – a visual feast that transports us down memory lane.
The John Tyler Community College Foundation Art Award was first started in 1995 to showcase the artistic abilities of John Tyler’s students while providing donors with a unique gift from the College. Once the winning entry is chosen, it is converted into a poster. The award winner receives $100, a framed and matted copy of the poster, as well as additional posters for portfolios.
The following students were finalists for the 2012 Foundation Art Award (zip codes follow each name): Bailey (23233), Rebekah Abrisz (23832), Shilona Cypress (23803), Tiffany Farley (23834), Lynn Frampton (23831), Edward Gonzalez (23229), Savannah Smith (23113), Terry Lynn Smith (23834), Ilona Shuvalova Strunk (23237), and Robert Wynne (23236).