by BECCA BARR

Talented Teen

student_hsieh1Some people are drawn to the arts and others to the sciences. Keely Hsieh, a student at Sage Creek High School in Carlsbad, excels at both. “I’ve been involved in art for as long as I can remember. When I was little I used to make my own coloring books and write stories, which I would illustrate,” Keely related. “My house was always littered with crayons and markers and watercolors – which I would go through faster than my mom could replace.” She began entering art contests in elementary school and received recognition for her work. She was even voted “Most Artistic” for her eighth grade superlative.

Keely does more than just draw. Earlier this year, she was inspired to approach her school about doing a large-scale mural called Eyes Wide Open. She helped photograph the eyes of students and then collaged and pasted large scale versions throughout the school. She became the project manager and photography editor of this photo installation, which celebrates individuality and diversity of the school community. She also plays guitar, piano, and writes her own music. “I love creating things, and music is another way to release a part of me into the world,” Keely stated.


Name: Keely Hsieh
School: Sage Creek High School
Hobbies & Interests: Art, music, photography


student_hsieh2In addition to art, Keely also loves engineering. She enjoys the engineering pathway at school, and is grateful that Sage Creek offers STEM-based classes. She is involved with Science Olympiad and robotics at school. She is also a volunteer for the City’s engineering department, where she is learning about civil engineering.

While Keely has lived in Carlsbad all her life, and loves the city for its people and beautiful places to photograph, she hopes to leave when she goes to college. “I’d like to attend school either in the Bay Area/Northern California or out of state. I think it’d be a really fun experience to live in a new environment,” Keely said. She dreams of being an aerospace engineer at NASA, although she also has a goal of traveling and documenting her experiences through photography.

“I love creating things, and music is another way to release a part of me into the world.”

Keely gets her drive from her parents. Both were immigrants from Taiwan, and modeled hard work for their three daughters. “They’ve always supported me and taught me that everything comes from hard work and perseverance. My mom has always said that it doesn’t matter if you’re the best, as long as you are the best you know you can be, and that’s really stuck with me.”