Nicole Anderson, artistNicole Anderson wants a career as an artist.

"I may teach someday as well," said the 20-year-old whose untitled mixed-media piece won best-of-show honors May’s Student Art Exhibition. "My goal is to rely on painting."

"A lot of the images in that composition are things from a sketchbook I’ve seen," she added. "They simply were used for the narrative of the piece."

The Coast Union High grad hopes the large-scale piece raises questions.

"I love questions. Whether it’s some uncertainty about what’s going on, it’s very subjective," she said. "I like things that are very subjective. We know something happened, but we don’t know quite what happened and as the viewer we’re trying to figure out what happened. There’s always this question … and it’s never really answered. I love things that are unresolved."

Anderson’s equine-themed "Follow Me" earned the best painting award and another cash prize from the Helen Novy Art Fund Foundation.

Her future plans involve art.

"After Cuesta I plan to study abroad," she said. "I’d like to study in Europe."