Fender receives behind the scenes tour of DCSD holiday card printing


By Melissa Rollins, Editor, editor@newsandpress.net

Whimsy and charm with a touch of imagination. That was a winning combination for Mayo High School for Math, Science and Technology Senior Sarah Fender, who was recently named winner of the Darlington County School District annual Holiday Card Art Contest. On Nov. 2, Fender visited the Darlington County Institute of Technology to see how her artwork was being transformed into the card.

Fender’s image of a snowman being dressed by several woodland creatures will be featured on the cards sent out by the district.

“I really thought about it for a while,” Fender said. “I decided that I wanted to do a winter scene and I wanted to include a snowman. I thought of harmony and how at Christmas everyone comes together. I thought it would be interesting to have the animals together, building the snowman. Normally, you wouldn’t see a wolf and a rabbit together.”

Eric Tew, Graphic Communications Instructor gave Fender, her mother, Mayo Principal Arlene Wallace and Mayo Art Teacher Lyn O’Donnell for a tour of his classroom and showed them some of the equipment students use throughout the semester on projects ranging from screen printed t-shirts to coffee mugs.

During the tour, DCIT Director Robbie Smith explained that the printing process for the holiday cards has changed a lot, even in the last few years, because of advances in technology.


“Over the years, they would always print the cards on the offset printing press; they would do it the old fashioned way,” Smith said. “Last year Mr. Hayes said that for the first time, since he’d been doing it, he felt like the digital cards were the same quality as the offset printing ones so last year they did them digitally. This year Mr. Tew decided that they would do them digitally again. The students have still printed them and folded them and they did a lot of the same stuff, they just didn’t have to use all the heavy equipment.”

As part of Fender’s win, she received a certificate, $50 and a packet of the holiday cards. Donnell received $100 for art supplies for Mayo. During their DCIT visit, Tew surprised them with several other goodies, including a mouse pad, coffee mug and a button with Fender’s image on them; the button seemed to be Fender’s favorite and she quickly pinned it to the lanyard carrying her school ID card.

This was her first contest entry using graphic design.

“I was excited when I found out I won,” Fender said. “It was pretty crazy because I didn’t think I would.”

Though the graphic design element may be fairly new, Fender is quite the accomplished artist having won several contests within the district and even several at local fairs and other contests. She will attend Francis Marion University in the fall to study graphic design.

The yearly card contest runs on a rotating schedule so next year it will be open to Darlington County elementary school students.

Author: mrollins

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