Stanford freshman wins drawing contest

By: 
Vicky McCray
Special to the News-Argus

Faith Rosman is not only enthusiastic but also passionate about her artwork. She created the cover page on the December issue of Rural Montana. 

Photos by Vicky McCray

Members of the area’s Fergus Electric Cooperative have already seen the newest Rural Montana, the magazine of the Montana Electric Cooperatives’ Association. The magazine was in mailboxes just recently. The artistic holiday cover is the creation of 14-year-old Stanford freshman Faith Rosman. It is a computer-generated drawing celebrating winter and the holidays. Faith earned $100 for her winning cover entry.

One would think this prize would be a real feather in the artist’s bonnet, and indeed, it is; however, this is not the only money Faith has earned with her artwork. She said she uses a website for artists and has made artwork online for people. She has earned $200 this way.

Faith has been taught to fend for herself, so to speak. If she wants something, she is required to earn the money to buy it. She has a job at Dauna’s Deli on Saturdays during the school year and during the summer when Dauna needed her. She learned about the Christmas cover contest with Rural Montana magazine while putting in a Deli shift.

“We were having a pretty slow day,” Faith said. 

She noted Dauna’s daughter-in-law’s aunt, who works for Rural Montana co-ops, was in the Deli.

“She caught me doodling when I was supposed to be getting her drink,” Faith admitted. “Instead of getting mad at me and making Dauna fire me right on the spot, she suggested I submit some art for the Rural Montana magazine.”

The woman gave Faith her email address as well as the details surrounding the December issue of the magazine.

“I went home and started on it right away,” Faith said.

It took her about four days to complete the picture. She explained it took longer because she didn’t do it with lines; she did a complete digital painting, which makes the process much harder.

“It is very hard to do,” she commented.

For the cover she had to make a layer for each and every color, a layer for the shading of each and every color and a layer for the brightness of each and every color. Then she added blurs and “all sorts of stuff.”

“It took a while,” Faith said. “I think my final count for total layers on my program was about 46.”

She thought the little dog took the longest, and those people who have the actual magazine can see the different shades of yellow in the dog’s jacket, as well as the shades in her coat and tongue.

Faith drew her sketch at the Deli and then took a picture of the sketch when she got home. She uploaded the picture to her paint program, bloated it up and went from there.

“That’s what I do for all of my digital drawings,” Faith said. “I have to start with paper because I’m not too good at sketching on the computer.”

Faith said it has taken time for her to get to the point at which she is now. Jim, a friend of her mom’s, bought her the Clip Studio Paint Pro program for her birthday. 

“It’s complicated and it has taken me a while to get used to it,” Faith said, “but it works really, really well, and a lot of professional digital artists use it.”

She started out with simpler paint programs, free programs, and these helped her to learn the basics. She thought she had probably been working with the free stuff for about three years when she received Paint Pro. Up until last year, she did not have a computer of her own and used a school computer or her mom’s laptop to figure out digital painting.

She said her English teacher, Mr. McConnaha, listened to her complaints about having to use a mouse for her painting. He offered her the use of a Wacom Bamboo Drawing Tablet that had been in his classroom and never used. The tablet is designed to feel like paper, Faith explained, and the pen is meant to feel like a real pen. Faith plugs it into her computer and must look at the computer screen while drawing on the tablet.

“It took me about three or four months to get used to it,” she said.

The young artist is currently saving for a Wacom Cintiq. With this equipment she can look at the tablet while she’s drawing. It also has its own programs built into it

“It is about $2,000,” Faith said, “but they are the same drawing tablets used by animators for Disney, Dreamworks and other studios.”

This price tag might seem a bit steep for someone so young, but Faith is “into” her artwork, passionate about it actually, and has plans for it in the future. Her mom, Susan Rosman, told her she had been drawing since she was able to hold a pencil. Susan has drawings that Faith drew at age 2. The little artist called the drawings airplanes, but they were actually helicopters and she drew pages and pages of them – “a circle with two little circles in the center for the windows…a little propeller and the legs and the back propeller.”

“It looked like a little cartoony helicopter,” she said.

At five Faith had turned out artwork that Susan hadn’t even thought about attempting until high school.

Although she likes working on pencil drawings, most of the art Faith is doing today is digital art, cartoons mostly. She has, however, been working on landscape paintings on the computer recently.

Faith finds time for her passion after school and “during school when I’m supposed to be paying attention.”

“I’m a doodler – all over my paper,” she said.

Faith is sending her cousin, Healy Rosman, a copy of the Rural Montana magazine because he is her main inspiration.

“He’s the really cool cousin,” Faith said. “He is in a band, he draws, he animates. It’s like ‘Wow, I want to be like you when I grow up!’”

Healy has a Wacom Cintiq Tablet.

Other than Healy, Faith looks up to cartoonists Patrick McHale, Pendleton Ward and Alex Hirsch.

McHale made “Over the Garden Wall,” and he and Ward both worked on “The Misadventures of Flapjack.” Ward then went on to create “Adventure Time.” All of these cartoon series were created for Cartoon Network.

Hirsch created “Gravity Falls,” which first aired on the Disney Channel but soon moved to Disney XD.

Faith said “Over the Garden Wall,” “Gravity Falls” and a third animated television series, “Steven Universe,” created by Rebecca Sugar, are the Holy Trinity of Cartoons. 

“I’m really interested in these people,” Faith said. “I really want to create my own show that is kind of like their style. They have a way of hooking adults into kid shows and it’s great. Their work also has a plot.”

She hopes to get her show onto Cartoon Network, Disney or Nickelodeon.

For now, however, Faith is interested in participating in the Out West Art Show’s Young Masters Art Program. This program takes place during the Charlie Russell Art week in Great Falls in March.

Faith calls herself a self-taught artist. She grew up on Disney, her favorite “Aladdin.” 

She is trying to come up with her own style, combining the vintage 20s-style cartoons like Betty Boop and Felix the Cat, with modern cartoon styles.

Faith has already determined she will have to go out of state for college, but she has been told there are ways to earn scholarships through the Young Masters Art Program. 

Faith has attended Stanford School since sixth grade. In addition to her art, she also calls reading one of her favorite things. She especially likes fantasy but noted she liked F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby” and really loves Edgar Allan Poe. She likes to write as well, short stories in particular. This freelance artist is a well-rounded young lady.

Faith also admitted she is rather morbid and likes gore, something she called candy gore. In visiting with her, however, the last thing people would draw from their conversation is morbidity. She’s enthusiastic about what she does and her eyes simply sparkle when she talks about art.

She is currently a member of the DGS Speech and Drama team, participating in Humorous Oral Interpretation (HOI). 

Folks can check out more of Faith’s artwork by logging onto wdie.deviantart.com/.

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