The school newspaper of Oakville High School


The school newspaper of Oakville High School


The school newspaper of Oakville High School


Ceramic Spectacle

Sydney Baker (12) celebrates her induction into the St. Louis Artists Guild
Lucy Caira
Baker happily poses with her displayed project in the St. Louis Artists Guild. “I really enjoyed making the noodles using the clay extruder,” Baker said. The extruder is her favorite tool to use in ceramics class.

Sydney Baker (12) is just one of many OHS students who does not hesitate to challenge herself to the fullest extent. Not only is she a three-sport athlete, CAPS and dual enrollment student, but she also harbors a hidden talent in ceramics.

Recently, one of Baker’s ceramic projects from the first semester was granted entrance into the “Young Artists Showcase 2024” display of the “St. Louis Artists Guild”, an esteemed exhibition organization. What’s more, is that Baker was one of the only of many entered ceramics students at Oakville to have her artwork accepted into this prestigious artists’ guild. 

The St. Louis Artists Guild in downtown Clayton.

“The St. Louis Artists guild is a show that showcases young artists in high school all around the St. Louis area,” ceramics teacher Amela Cikota said. “Hundreds of people submit their artwork, or their teachers submit it for them, and this year about 400 were submitted. Then, they have a juror that chooses a small percentage of the work to be displayed in the artists guild.”

Every teacher is able to submit up to 10 pieces of artwork to the guild, and Baker was the only of Cikota’s students to be accepted. 

“Last year we had about six-eight students accepted but it [Baker’s piece] is actually a special one for me because this is my first student entry to get accepted,” Cikota said. 

Being only her second year of teaching, this is an accomplishment for Cikota as it is for Baker. Of course, an honor like this does not come without hard work and dedication. Baker worked in Cikota’s room for weeks to perfect her rendition of a take-out box of noodles. 

Lucy Caira

“I first cut a bunch of slabs to shape the box and attached them together by scoring and slipping. Then I used a clay extruder to make the noodles, which took a lot of concentration so they wouldn’t crack,” Baker said. “The rest of the time I worked on smoothing it out and making sure it looked as realistic as possible.”  

Cikota chose Baker’s project specifically for her “perfect” craftsmanship and excellence in realism. This can be credited to how long Baker has been a part of the OHS ceramics program. 

“I took ceramics I my freshman year, but I unfortunately didn’t get much out of it because we were doing online school for the majority of the year. Although, I enjoyed it once we got to try it in person,” Baker said. “So, I decided to take ceramics II first semester this year to have another shot at it, which is where I made the noodle box. Now, I am a cadet for Mrs. Jenkins’ ceramics I class.” 

Baker is no longer enrolled in Cikota’s class, but she still comes to ask questions, get help with independent projects or just to catch up.

“…I just loved having her as a student. She is amazing. Her artwork was so good and she’s just overall very talented and just a really positive influence to have in class,” Cikota said. 

Not only does Cikota enjoy having Baker as a student, but Baker enjoys having Cikota as a teacher. 

Lucy Caira

“I love how helpful she is because she is always showing me new techniques to improve my artwork,” Baker said. “I’ve learned a lot of interesting methods and she teaches me how to really incorporate them into my projects, such as the wire on my take out box.”

Baker has several academic and athletic commitments besides art, making ceramics an escape for her. 

“I like ceramics because it’s a good creative outlet and it’s therapeutic. I can see it being a fun side hobby for me in the future,” Baker said. “It is also the area of art that I am best at. I don’t really like drawing or painting but with 3D ceramics projects the process just clicks for me. It’s not frustrating for me like with other art mediums, just enjoyable.”

Baker and Cikota alike participated in a huge accomplishment by being featured in the St. Louis Artists Guild. Baker’s acceptance into the guild just goes to show her vast variety of talent. She is very proud of her artwork, and so is her teacher. 

“I truly love teaching ceramics,” Cikota said. “When work like that comes out of my classroom, it really makes me proud of my students to be able to produce something so incredible.”

Lucy Caira


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Lucy Caira
Lucy Caira, Reporter
Hey! My name is Lucy Caira, and I am a senior at Oakville. Besides newspaper, I am involved in cross country, FBLA, STUCO, Spanish Club and more at school. I enjoy watching movies, reading books, sewing and listening to music. This is my first year on newspaper staff at OHS, and I am beyond excited to contribute to this school publication! :)

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