Miguels other side
Goshen Boys and Girls Club drawing selected for national exhibit Voces Latinas
By PABLO ROS
Whenever Brenda Holbrook passed him in the hallways of the Goshen Boys and Girls Club, 16-year-old Miguel Sandoval always seemed to have sports on his mind. He spent most of his time in the facilitys basement, playing sports. Holbrook, the clubs art director, thought of him solely as the athletic type. He was the kind of athlete other kids looked up to, fiercely competitive. That went on for more than two years until, one day, Miguel walked into Holbrooks art class to compete in a cartoon drawing contest. Neither Holbrook nor others at the club had guessed that this athlete known for losing his temper on the field was also a great artist. Then this year, something unique happened, something unprecedented. For the first time in the 50-year history of the Goshen club, Holbrook says, one of its contest entries was selected for display at the National Fine Arts Exhibit of the Boys and Girls Club of America. The winner was Miguels pastel drawing, titled, The Eye of the Tiger. The National Fine Arts Exhibit Program draws artwork from more than 1,000 clubs nationwide. Miguels drawing was one of 37 works chosen for display at the national conference of the Boys and Girls Club of America and in a virtual gallery that will open in a couple of months on its Web site. Its a really striking picture, Holbrook says. Miguel says he copied the animal from a photograph in a magazine because he likes wild animals. He colored its eye bright yellow, creating contrast. It stands out from all the orange and dark color, he said. The photograph in the magazine was of one side of the animal, Miguel says, giving the drawing a special effect. It makes you wonder what the other half would look like, he said. Miguel knows his reputation at the club. When he is playing team sports, he is, by his own admission, a loudmouth. Or, as Holbrook has put it, a little hot-headed. But when he sits down to draw, he reveals a different side of his person. To Miguel, drawing is like the opposite of playing team sports. When he draws, he likes to be alone and focus. He gets nervous if others are watching. Thats why Holbrook says its been exciting to see Miguels other side, to get to know him better, to encourage him to open up when hes off the field, and to watch him mature.Hes grown up a lot this year, Holbrook says. Its been a great year. This year, she says, Miguel was the pitcher of his softball team, for which the club named him MVP. Kids had already looked up to Miguel for his athleticism, Holbrook says, and now Migue ls artistic prowess has been to others an inspiration.Its made a lot of (the other kids) realize that, oh, we can make it all that way, Holbrook says. Miguel says he learned to draw from watching his older sister. But unlike her, he plans to finish high school and go to college. Hes got dreams. In the fall, Miguel will start his sophomore year at Goshen High School, where hell continue to be an athlete and an artist. Miguel will play safety on the schools football team and take an art class. Hes trying to better his grades because someday he would like to play football for the University of Notre Dame. He says hell also continue to draw. Holbrook and Miguels proud father, Hector Sandoval, an immigrant from Mexico, want to make sure that he does. It really is my passion to work with kids like Miguel, Holbrook says. Miguel is proof that, given the opportunity, young people can explore their hidden talents and reveal to those around them other sides of their changing selves. And, like Miguel, they will stand out from the rest.