Sun Sentinel Broward Edition

Creative showcase for youngsters

Young At Art Children’s Museum in Davie hosts its Fifth Annual Comic Convention

- By Scott Fishman

Teen artists got to showcase and sell their work at the Fifth Annual Comic Convention at Young At Art Children’s Museum in Davie.

In addition, YAA’s resident cartoonist, Rob Cabrera, hosted a 3-D demonstrat­ion.

“There has been a spike in interest in art,” said Cabrera, creator of the “Silo Roberts” comic strip. “There are a lot of kids interested in exploring art. Some years, there is some superhero film that speaks to different kids and makes them want to pick up that pencil and start drawing. This year, kids have been clamoring for Captain America. It generally starts with a basic love of art.”

Generating a lot of interest was the display by 11-year-old Victoria Baylac, of Weston. Baylac, diagnosed with autism at age 2, began drawing when she was 4. The budding artist’s talents have been nurtured by Cabrera’s classes.

Baylac also does work on the computer and Microsoft Paint, and created characters with animation on her Nintendo DS. Her inspiratio­n comes from a variety of sources.

“I like to draw everything,” she said. “I draw from cartoons, television shows and video games.”

Lucia Mingo said this creative outlet has helped her daughter in social settings.

“She is very shy and says she communicat­es through her art,” Mingo said. “She tells me, ‘Mommy, my drawings are my secret weapons to making friends.’ She opens up when she shows her work.”

Jacqueline Diaz, 16, came to the convention for the first time.

“I do a lot of types of art,” she said. “I do sketches, face paint and body art, and sometimes I sculpt. I read comics and write stories, so I want to be able to draw pictures for them.”

Julie Jarema, 17, made her second appearance at the event. The former YAA volunteer is a fan of Disney and Pixar animation, which she likes to show in her work. Among the pieces at her table was a pair of canvas shoes with a Dr. Seuss theme she designed.

“I started painting shoes after I did a pair with logos of Broadway shows for my friend’s birthday,” she said. “She really liked them, and some of my other friends offered to pay me. I now get sent pictures and do them for $25.”

Cabrera is proud of the talented youngsters and happy they are given this opportunit­y to showcase their work.

“I wish this sort of thing was around when I was a kid,” he said. “They didn’t have comic convention­s for young artists. You had to have already been working for Marvel or DC [Comics] to even have a display. They gain exposure through this and confidence in their own work. Most importantl­y, they develop a discipline if they want to pursue this as a career. They develop business acumen to best present themselves.”

The festivitie­s included a meet and greet with “Zoom Suit” creator John Taddeo, who gave out free comic books to children in attendance. Tate’s Comics also gave out free comics and sold superhero merchandis­e.

Cabrera will be working on his animated project, “Monica,” through the end of the year. The first of three movies is set to premiere in May at the Academy of Art’s Spring Show in San Francisco, and he hopes to screen it at comic convention­s and YAA’s new museum next year.

For more informatio­n on Young At Art, call 954-424-0085 or visit www.youngatart­museum.org.

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 ?? STAFF PHOTOS BY BETH BLACK ?? Above, with the help of Natalie Mion, 10, of Miramar, cartoonist Rob Cabrera taught a crowd of children how to use colors to create an effective 3-D cartoon. The demonstrat­ion was part of the Fifth Annual Comic Convention at Young At Art Children’s...
STAFF PHOTOS BY BETH BLACK Above, with the help of Natalie Mion, 10, of Miramar, cartoonist Rob Cabrera taught a crowd of children how to use colors to create an effective 3-D cartoon. The demonstrat­ion was part of the Fifth Annual Comic Convention at Young At Art Children’s...

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