From left to right: Ty Finley, Tara Finley, and Coach Ronnie Huckeba.
Last year, Harding Academy senior Tara Finley painted a depiction of a bison, titled “Bison Warrior” for her older brother, former Harding football player Ty Finley. Since then, the painting has received notable recognition among the Harding community. The painting was a graduation present for Ty, who played for the University for four years.
“I wanted to show him how much I respected him and how proud I was of him for his hard work and dedication in everything he does. I’ve never met a more driven person than him,” Finley said.
Though the siblings are six years apart in age, Finley is thankful for the example her brother has been to her and spent several months working on a project she hoped would convey that.
“Art is what I do, so it made sense for me to express all this through art,” Finley said.
Finley also presented a donated framed print to Coach Huckeba and is excited about the possibility of sharing her work with others.
“Bison Warrior” first gained attention at Harding Academy’s annual art show, where Finley was approached by David Hall, manager of the University’s bookstore. Increased interest in the piece led to the production of prints for the bookstore.
“The most exciting thing has been that people love my work,” Finley said. “It’s so humbling and amazing to know that people appreciate what you do best.”
Finley is thankful for the learning experience this opportunity has provided as well as the encouragement this project has brought her as an artist. She plans to attend Harding as a freshman in fall 2015 to pursue art or a related field. A fourth generation Harding student in her family, her grandfathers have both served as department heads at the University, and her parents and two older brothers are Harding alumni.
“I am a Harding girl through and through,” Finley said. “I love the Harding community, and I am thankful for the foundation it has given me.”
Prints and stretched canvases of “Bison Warrior” are now available in the bookstore for purchase and online at hubookstore.harding.edu.
Bethany Aspey, web content manager