High School Invitational Exhibition

Abstract color pencil artwork by Alexis Estrada.

This exhibition of high school artwork produced by students in the northern Illinois region is sponsored by the NIU School of Art and Design. Awards are made available by Blick Art Materials.


The High School Invitational will be on view from Nov. 6-18, 2023, workshops and a closing reception will take place on Saturday, Nov. 18. The full schedule for the event can be found below.

Time Activity Description
Noon Doors open N/A
Noon-1 p.m. Registration for workshops Workshops are open to any student from a participating school. It is first come first serve for workshop sign-up. All workshops are free to attend and open to high school students only
1-2 p.m. Art Education program panel

Get an inside look at the art education program at NIU from current faculty and students
Art building tour for parents N/A
1-3 p.m. Illustration: Introduction to 3D Digital Sculpting with ZBrush

This hands-on workshop will show students how to get started creating their own 3D digital models using ZBrush. ZBrush is an industry-standard digital sculpting software used by artists, illustrators and animators for character design, games, movies and animations. It is an organic form of model creation, allowing the user to mimic sculpting with clay (plus a whole lot more). Digital 3D models can be 3D printed, used in hi-res 2D illustrations, or brought into animation software and rigged to add movement. Bring a USB or USBc flash drive to save your model, or save it to your Cloud account if you have one.

2-3 p.m. Photography Lighting Studio Come explore light and color through photography! Using reflective objects, colored lighting, and cardboard boxes, students will create fun and interesting compositions in our lighting studio. Students can use their phones or use one of our cameras to take photographs of their light modulators.
Printmaking screenprint workshop Learn about the process of screenprinting in this mini demo workshop from Printmaking graduate students Elyse Herrera and Mary O'Connor.
Admissions presentation for parents N/A
3-4 p.m. Invitational Closing Reception and Awards Ceremony The awards ceremony will start at 3:30 p.m. All artwork must be taken at the close of the reception


If you have questions, please contact us at art-exhibitions@niu.edu.

Entry Form Submission

Digital submissions are now open.

Entry Form