During the summer of 2021, senior Ilianna Brett embarked on a journey of a lifetime to the Bahamas on behalf of KO’s Rosoff Fellowship for Media Arts. In the course of three weeks, Ilianna went underwater diving, ranging from 20 to 106 feet, all the while snapping beautiful images on her camera.
The Rossoff Fellowship for Media Arts is offered to one Kingswood Oxford junior who has taken at least one upper-level media arts course. “It is essentially a lump sum of money that is spun off from an early anonymous donor,” creative arts teacher Greg Scranton said. Named after Pat Rosoff, a late beloved KO art teacher, the fellowship gives one student an opportunity to explore whatever creative passions they choose.
Ilianna spent three weeks at what was essentially a sleep-away camp on the ocean. Using a point-and-shoot camera, Ilianna would dive to the bottom of the ocean three or four times every day to take photos of the sea life around her.
Inspired by ocean life and the Earth’s vivid life support system, Ilianna’s work features various sharks, turtles, fish, and coral. With the use of flash and various angles, her work beautifully captures a world of creatures that isn’t seen often.
“I love that I get to share my work with people in a space like the Roberts Gallery, which is so open and inviting,” Ilianna said. Mr. Scranton expressed that he was so happy for Ilianna to earn this opportunity. “The kids who get awarded these fellowships really love what they’re doing and are so passionate, so I think it’s a really self-serving experience,” he said.
Ilianna’s work is currently being displayed in the Roberts Gallery and will most likely be on running for another week or two. I encourage everyone to stop by in between their classes to check it out and admire the amazing work Ilianna has created!