Artist bio

Shayna Arnell Sutton was born in Weatherford, Texas in 1990. Raised by a single mother in a small town she lived off her very creative imagination as a child, she embraced her personhood and allowed what made her different to be expressed throughout her art. She began her art education in 2008 only to decide to enlist in the United States Navy in 2011. Completing her enlistment in 2016 she decided to continue her education and by doing so found her love for art again through God. Although, she wears the hat crafted from a mother, veteran, artist and sometimes baker. They all play a part in helping to inspire the multifaceted artist she is today. She tries to immerse herself in all of the different art mediums but, she has strong passion for drawing, sculpture, painting and photography. They all allow her to do what she loves the most which is portraits, social, political and personal messages or statements. She loves to use vivid colors but still loves the power that comes from the simple yet influential monochromatic colors used in an analog camera. She is pursuing her BFA in Sculpture at the University of Texas at Arlington.





Artist Statement

Cardboard allows my vision to come to life through the manipulation of this recyclable component.This mixed media sculpture aids in expressing the hidden qualities of my spirit, the ability to find my own language and connection to God. It benefits my personhood by allowing me to direct my own narrative and my interpretation of the world around me. As a result the organic material is transformed well beyond its everyday function, forming a complex, multilayered female figure.

How it fits into contest

“Makeda” is a self-portrait of me and my lost spiritual narrative. This sculpture represents my gospels truths of my journey as someone’s daughter, mother, as an artist and a USN veteran. I found through my journey my strength alone was not enough to endure life’s obstacles. Through my conversations and prayers to God I found wisdom and knowledge. I now know I should not rely on my own strength but, on the power of God to fight my battles. My inner solider who was once a prisoner of war, is gifted the breastplate of righteousness to protect my vulnerable heart. Through these moments I find myself embracing the world around me with my eyes closed, just like the sculpture. Always remembering God is with me every step of the way of my journey.


Artist: Shayna Sutton

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Curious? Interested in submitting artwork to our contest? Know someone who might be? Through April 14th, 2022, the Engage Art Contest is open to the whole world! Get your foot in the door by claiming your Artist Page now!