Watercolor of earth by student artist Jordynn Campbell

The cover art of the 2020-21 Family Handbook and Calendar was created by Jordynn Campbell when she was an eighth grader at Kulshan Middle School last school year. The watercolor of the earth was hanging in the District Office in spring 2020 when the pandemic closure took place.

We had a chance to learn more about Jordynn this summer. We learned she cares deeply for our planet and is an activist for the environment and racial justice. See photo above with one of her recent summer creations.

Kulshan principal Meagan Dawson shared this glowing report about her.

“Jordynn is such a super star,” Dawson writes. “She started an environment awareness campaign at Kulshan last year all on her own, bringing awareness to our school community about climate change and our use of resources. She made eye-catching colorful posters for each hallway to help students remember to bring a reusable water bottle from home instead of single-use plastic water bottles. She is my hero! We will be celebrating all of Jordynn’s successes in the years to come, and I’m sure there will be many. I’m so thrilled to see that her gifts and talents can be celebrated and featured on the cover of our district handbook and calendar.”

We asked Jordynn some questions this summer about her earth watercolor and about some of her interests. She will start at Bellingham High School in September.

Tell us how (medium used) and why (what class/what assignment) you created the piece that is on the cover of the Handbook. 

The reason I created this piece is because I feel that its soft and shows simplicity but in a beautiful way. To be completely honest…I had no idea what I was creating in the beginning but I just said “what happens, happens” and let my creative thoughts flow. Originally this art piece was meant to show global warming, but instead I ended up creating more of just a simple showcasing of our beautiful earth. I experimented with the colors to make it unique. Furthermore, this piece was created in my art class where we were using watercolors and experimenting what you could do with them (using salt, layering the paint, etc.) This helped me add nice details and touches to my art.

Do you enjoy any area of visual arts in particular, for example, drawing, painting or something else? 

Yes! My favorite ways to create art is mainly sketching (using plain pencil) and then going over my tracing with either pens or color pencils.  But I also like being bold when I want to get a message across, so in that scenario I would most likely paint my piece or go really heavy in depth with pencil.

Tell us about your passion for environmental justice. What words of aspiration or inspiration do you want to give the world or to your fellow students.

I really started getting passionate about environmental justice last summer (2019). It all kind of started when I saw a video of this group of people pulling a plastic straw out of a turtles nose on Instagram. More and more videos like that one were popping up. I kept scrolling and, next thing I know, I’m in this deep hole and saw more of the terrible reality facing our planet…and what we as humans are doing to it. Unfortunately, I don’t think enough people are educated on the matter or just simply don’t know how big our impact is on the earth. I started sharing facts and posts about Climate Change/ Global warming on social media and it kind of caught on as I saw more people doing it.

This past year I made posters for my school to be put up in the hallways for everyone to see. I wanted everyone to see the reality of how big our footprint really is on this earth. I spent my own money and time on the posters, but it was sure worth it to get my message across, because, quite frankly, my generation is the best chance to stop climate change and global warming…and I do not want to die because of it.

I want the world and my fellow classmates to know and remember this — don’t be a follower, be a leader.

Tell us about other interests you have.  

Some other interests I have are that I really love sports, such as volleyball, basketball, and tennis. I also enjoy creating things like clothing, accessories or just anything to express my style. Lastly, I’m a big music fan and I am always listening to music while doing a project or just relaxing!

What are your favorite television shows or movies, and favorite current music you are listening to?

By far my favorite TV show is “The Office” because it is really sarcastic, which I love.  A personal favorite movie of mine is called “The Hate You Give” and the reason is because it helped me see some of the unfair treatment (police brutality) from cops directed towards the Black community or people of color, which is unfortunate but I’m glad there is a movie showcasing some of it.

Some music I have been recently listening to is mainly indie music, but some artists I’ve been listening to are The Beatles and Dayglow.

What year are you starting in school? If this is a transition to a new school, what do you look forward to in high school (when we are back in-person).

I am starting ninth grade this year.  And some things I am very excited for when we are able to go back in person for school is that I can’t wait to interact with my teachers more, make some more friends, and play volleyball, basketball, and tennis for the school!

Tell us something you look forward to this school year, even though remote right now?

I am looking forward to seeing some familiar faces and just being able to be in class!

What has been the hardest thing about the pandemic for you? 

Since I am a very social person, not being able to see or hang out with most of my friends is definitely a bummer. But, at the end of the day, it is safer for us not to be all together.

What are some surprising things you have learned about yourself during the pandemic and that you now have greater gratitude for? 

Ever since the pandemic started, I’ve been trying to be more active, and I learned that I actually really like working out!

And I definitely have a greater gratitude for being able to hang out and about without a mask on because now I have to wear one when I go out, but it’s all ok!


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