Youngest Student wins American Bar Association annual photography contest
Thy Vu is the youngest student ever to win the American Bar Association
annual student photography contest. According to Jim Landman, Associate
Director, American Bar Association Division of Public Education, Vu showed
exceptional talent for visually interpreting the annual Images of
Freedom contest. Vu traveled to Washington, DC, at the end of April
where she received her award and a tour of the capitol. Landman commented
that a prestigious panel of judges chose her photo from among those of
middle school and high school students because of her attention to light
as well as her ability to illustrate the difficult theme of this year's
contest: Celebrate Your Freedom-Independent Courts Protect Our Liberties.
Vu, originally from Vietnam, is a seventh grader at College Place Middle School
in Lynnwood, Washington. She credits her interests in fine arts partially
to her mother, an artist, who taught her to observe light and nature. Several
years ago, Vu began drawing cartoons, and then with encouragement from her
mother, she began drawing from real life. Interestingly, Vu explains that
she first turned to art because bullies at school in Vietnam were harassing
her. In the beginning, she turned to art for comfort, now she turns to art
as an expression of her observations, hopes and dreams; however, she still
likes to draw cartoons.
Vu's winning photo of classmate, Mary Yilma from Ethiopia, looking at
a replica of the Statue of Liberty's torch, is called "Pure Court Thinking
About Freedom." It depicts the importance of separating judges from outside
influences when they make decisions based upon law rather than politics.
Vu explained the symbols she used in the photograph, "The girl in white
represents purity because judges should make pure decisions when no one
has the right to influence them." She added, "Judges should follow only
the law so we will have freedom."