Shining a Light on Fine Arts

Fine Arts are a crucial part of a Hockadaisy’s time in Upper School. With 11 different fine art disciplines available and 30 unique classes overall, getting creative and expressing oneself is easy. The FourCast spotlights ten of the Fine Arts classes provided here.
Students in Dance Workshop II prepare for their winter showcase.
Students in Dance Workshop II prepare for their winter showcase.
Anjy Fadairo
The Cornerstones Editors-in-Chief brief their classmates on plans for an upcoming spread.
Mass Communications

This is Cornerstones staff member sophomore Maya Bakshi’s first year on staff after taking Intro to Journalism her freshman year. All members of the yearbook must take the full-year Intro to Journalism course before joining. As a part of the Cornerstones staff, Bakshi does anything from taking photos to designing layouts.
Cornerstones is a place that allows its members to get pretty creative. An immense amount of work goes into designing a spread alone, and even when writing photo captions. Cornerstones staffers have to learn how to fit a large description into a few words.
“Yearbook gives me a lot of freedom to take a ton of photos, which I really love, and to capture different parts of the student life here at Hockaday,” Bakshi said. “I can manipulate how things look and the design of things.”
Bakshi said going into journalism is a good way to share how you see the different aspects of the Hockaday world.

Vibrato is an award-winning literary magazine run by Hockaday students. Throughout the year, they collect pieces of art from students and put them together in a collection at the end of the year.
As Co-Editor-in-Chief Junior Diya Cadambe started as assistant Literature Editor her freshman year and worked her way up to Managing Editor before taking on her current position. Her time in Vibrato has contributed to the rapid development of leadership skills and a confidence she said she wouldn’t have found elsewhere.
Inspired by the posters she saw hung around the halls in Middle School, Cadambe decided to join Vibrato once she got to Upper School. Although the class has also given Cadambe the opportunity to learn more technical skills like Adobe InDesign and Photoshop, she is especially appreciative of the sense of community.
“I’ve made some of my best senior friends from Vibrato,” Cadambe said. “The community is something that’s a big part of it, but it’s also an actual class. It’s fun, it’s really intuitive, and you get to enjoy yourself.”
Cadambe encourages people to look at Vibrato with an open mind and to appreciate the effort that goes into the book year-round.

The Cornerstones Editors-in-Chief brief their classmates on plans for an upcoming spread. (Bella Raymond)
Dancers, in in 2023s production of Harlequinade, rejoice over the marriage of Harlequin and Columbine.

Senior Elena Zeballos is a member of Hockaday Dance Lab and will play the Mad Hatter in Hockadance’s upcoming production of “Alice in Wonderland.”
Although Zeballos has been dancing since she was five years old, she emphasized how Hockadance is open to people of any level of skill. Students audition and are sorted into different classes based on skill level, allowing for a mix of grades and ages.
Hockadance strives to create a collaborative environment where students contribute creative ideas, segments and poses for performances. At the end of the year, Hockadance puts on a production of dances fully choreographed by the students.
“Joining dance is another way for me to bond with all these different girls with the same passion as me, and it’s so fun,” Zeballos said. “I can make friends with people in different grade levels, and we all get to kind of geek out over dance.”

Dancers, in in 2023’s production of Harlequinade, rejoice over the marriage of Harlequin and Columbine. (Cornerstones)
Photography and Film


Sophomore Emily Winchester is in Intermediate Photography. She plans to continue and join Advanced Photography.
Winchester said photography is the reason behind the growth in her imagination and understanding of the creative process. She also believes photography has taught her many different skills.
“I really like to learn the film process, developing and just working through different cameras,” Winchester said. “Also, I learned all the different formats and ways that you can take pictures and the way that you can print negatives.”
The photography class fosters an environment where students can learn from peers about different perspectives and approaches, valuing group work and collaboration. Students learn the importance of considering details and staging for impactful photography.


Sophomore film student Isla Mckenna has been in film since her freshman year and is now taking Advanced Filmmaking.
“It’s such a small class, so you really get know the other people, and it makes me take English and creative writing more seriously because I know it will help me in my filmmaking,” Mckenna said.
Film students also get the opportunity to participate in film festivals in different ways. Because of film, Mckenna got the opportunity to direct the largest student-led film festival in the country. She applied through her Middle School film teacher. Mckenna became the assistant producer at first and then received the position of director. Other students have had the chance to win awards by submitting their films to festivals.

Sophomore Lillian Sells works on her latest piece during art class.
Visual Arts

Freshman Samantha Moseley attempted ceramics for the first time this year. Despite being a novice to the fine art, she already loves it.
“Ever since I’ve seen people doing clay or pottery, I’ve always wanted to try that,” Moseley said. “When I came to Hockaday, I got the opportunity to try.”
Moseley views her fine art as unique because, in addition to being a confluence of painting, sculpting and photography, ceramics occupies space in a way the work of other fine arts doesn’t.
“Other fine arts, they present something on a wall, but we have to present on a pedestal because our stuff is 3D,” Moseley said.
She also said she will keep doing her fine art throughout Upper School.
“I’m definitely going to continue ceramics,” Moseley said, “I’m probably going to do it all four years.”

Studio Art
Siri Cherukuri, a senior in AP Studio art with a passion for painting, is well-known for her award-winning paintings.
Art provides her with relief, and art class has become her time of the week to relax and escape from the stressfulness of regular school life.
“I’ve really liked art for a long time – I started when I was seven – but I never really did art seriously until I was in high school,” Cherukuri said. “I really wanted to take AP Art and am I excited I get to do it this year.”
The AP Studio Art class has provided Cherukuri with an environment to grow and expand her skills beyond her usual level. The art room itself resides in a corner of the Fine Arts building, allowing for a separate space from the main building where artists can focus.

Sophomore Lillian Sells works on her latest piece during art class. (Anjy Fadairo)
Senior Matt Shaw workshops his performance during advanced drama.

Sophomore Izzy Hu first took up drama during her freshman year. Having no prior experience in the fine art, she said she was pleasantly surprised by the opportunities and community she found within the class.
“Everything was really chill, and I really enjoyed the culture within the class,” Hu said.
New drama teacher Jeremey Hays also provided insight into the Drama classes, explaining how the Hockaday students have provided a community where vulnerability can be shown.
For drama students, a hallmark of each year is the fall play. This play is annually held by the theater students and showcases Upper School actors from all grades.
Besides this, many students look for opportunities in St. Mark’s plays and in Hockaday’s musicals.
“There are many opportunities to apply drama, and I’m really grateful for the experience,” Hu said.

Senior Matt Shaw workshops his performance during advanced drama.
Senior orchestra performers beam after a successful performance at Augusts convocation ceremony.

Much of junior violinist Liz Steger’s life revolves around the Hockaday orchestra.
In addition to her fine art playing a huge role in developing her skills as an instrumentalist, she also loves the way she’s able to find camaraderie through being a member of the orchestra.
“I’ve played violin for eight years now,” Steger said. “At first, when I decided to do orchestra it was because we had to do a fine art – something I had to do, but the reason I stuck with it is because there’s something really special about the way the music you make blends with everyone else’s.”
In addition to appreciating the team aspect of the orchestra, Steger also finds that the different grades that blend into one class make it a better experience.
“There’s pretty much one or fewer classes that we all get put in, so we’re all stuck with it,” Steger said. “It’s not like other classes where you have certain people one year and others another year. It’s helped that we’ve been in orchestra this whole time and have been able to form a relationship.”
As Hockaday’s only instrumental orchestra, the group participates in several concerts and performances each year.
“We’re playing some Christmas music at North Park in December,” Steger said. “Then in the spring semester, we’ll have a pop concert and our senior solos performance.”

Senior orchestra performers beam after a successful performance at August’s convocation ceremony. (Cornerstones)
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