Miss Universe Barbara Palacios, on behalf of The Agustin Agency, presented a $1,000 scholarship award to Mikal Barker, a Nossi College of Art Commercial Illustration graduate for his illustrated work on Palacios’ upcoming children’s book series featuring dragonflies.
Seven Nossi College of Art Illustration students and alumni were selected to bring her dragonfly characters to life. To be considered, each illustrator submitted ideas, from digital concept to completed assignment, along with a video pitching their concept to Palacios and The Agustin Agency, a literary agency connecting authors to their audiences across the globe.
The quality of Barker’s work stood out to Palacios, who said she was drawn to Barker’s use of color and his portrayal of the characters.
“When I saw Mikal Barker’s art, it brought tears to my eyes,” said Palacios. “I thought, ‘Yes, that’s it. They will fit my stories.’”
Only one student could be selected to earn the $1,000 award along with an opportunity to continue to work on the project with Palacios and Agustin through publishing deals.
“This is a great opportunity for our students and recent graduates to work on a project of this size and importance,” said Cyrus Vatandoost, executive VP of the college. “Through our Nossi All Access Program, we give students a glimpse into real world timelines and deadlines, so they can compete in the professional world.”