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Veterans Creative Arts Festival firsts announced

Little Girl color photography first place winner

“Little Girl” by Danta Planta won first place in Color Photography in the annual Lovell FHCC Veterans Creative Arts Festival.

By Jayna Legg
Thursday, October 28, 2021
Lovell FHCC is pleased to announce first-place winners in our Veterans Creative Arts Festival visual art categories. Those pieces now will be considered for entry into the 41st National Veterans Creative Arts Festival, which takes place April 18-25, 2022, in St. Petersburg, Fla.

Despite the pandemic, Lovell FHCC received 30 visual art entries and nine creative writing entries for the annual contest, which took place virtually this year because of pandemic restrictions. Photos of the artwork are available on the Lovell FHCC Facebook page. Link here:

Creative writing entries, which included poems, essays and short stories, can be linked to below.

"Every year, I have the great honor to present our talented, brave, and creative veterans,” said Lovell FHCC CAF Co-coordinator Tricia Stewart, art therapist. “I’m so proud of their achievements, and now we can forever display their creativity on our FHCC Facebook page. Also, thank you to all the staff who are continually supporting our veterans' creative endeavors."
Watercolor picture of flower starburst

“Starburst” by Ralph Barzowski won first in the Watercolor category in the annual Lovell FHCC Veterans Creative Arts Festival.

Across the country each year, veterans enrolled at VA health care facilities compete in a local creative arts competition. The competition includes categories in the visual arts division that range from oil painting to leatherwork to paint-by-number kits. In addition, there are categories in writing as well as the performing arts of dance, drama, and music.

Local creative arts competition first place winning entries advance to a national judging process and first, second and third place entries in each category are determined. Selected gold-medal-winning veterans are invited to attend the National Veterans Creative Arts Festival, co-presented by the VA and the American Legion Auxiliary and hosted by a different VA facility each year. The national competition results will be announced in December.

VA medical facilities, including Lovell FHCC, incorporate creative arts into therapy programs to further the rehabilitation goals for both inpatients and outpatients. The CAF recognizes the progress and recovery made through that therapy and raises the visibility of the creative achievements of veterans. Color photo of bear fishing in stream

"Bear Fishing in Alaska," by Richard Simmons, is one of the entries in the Color Photography category of the Veterans Creative Arts Festival.

"While COVID-19 continues to impact our lives daily, we know the benefits of creating art can have far reaching effects on one’s overall health and well-being,” said National Veterans Creative Arts Festival Director Ann Kimbler. “Studies show that spending time on a creative arts project can relieve stress, strengthen thinking skills and improve memory. Through art you can inspire and encourage others. No matter how far apart we are, art can help us to relax and bring us closer. Veterans, we thank you for sincerely sharing your creativity with us."

Lovell FHCC first place winners:

“Diane” by Jerry Zabel, Mixed Media

“Elizabeth Taylor” by Nick Pantele, Digital Art

“Ember” by Joshua Zoeller, Colored Drawing

“Little Girl” by Danta Planta, Color Photography

“Peace & Journey” by Patsy Delp, Black and White Photography

“Starburst” by Ralph Barzowski, Watercolor

“A Village Called Bob” by Paul Revis, Short Story

“My Responses (Bug Story)” by Paul Revis, Humor

 “Let Us Reverence God in All Ways,” by Bobbie Blackwell, Poetry Non-Rhyming

Creative Writing Entries


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