A not-so-trivial pursuit: SHS student’s art goes worldwide in ‘Trivia Knight’ game

Published 2:35 pm Friday, November 4, 2022

Smithfield High School senior Elizabeth DeFluri has always been captivated by art.

When the COVID-19 pandemic shuttered Virginia’s schools in the middle of her freshman year, drawing, and specifically graphic design, became her creative outlet for dealing with the isolation.

“The pandemic really opened my eyes to the significance art has in the world and I developed a reverence for the designs and concepts people take for granted daily,” DeFluri said.

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Over the past three years, she’s created posters, logos and T-shirt designs for her school, and has even interned as a graphic designer with Isle of Wight County Schools’ communications coordinator, David Elliott. When Kris Warshefski, lead developer of the internationally used foreign language teaching website Voces Digital, asked teachers from around the world to nominate a student to design graphics for Voces’ new “Trivia Knight” game, only one name came to Smithfield High School Spanish teacher Jill Vargas’ mind.

“I knew of her internship she did with Mr. Elliott and the county and her passion for graphic design,” Vargas said. “being a teacher is more than just teaching ‘content’ but actually knowing your student’s passions and supporting them.”

Warshefski ultimately chose DeFluri for the project. By the end of the year, when Trivia Knight debuts, students and teachers from all over the United States and the world will have seen DeFluri’s work.

Warshefski describes Trivia Knight as “a game where students take up the role of a knight to try to gather treasure from trivia-obsessed dragons.”

Spanish, French and English-as-a-second-language teachers who use the game in their classes will be able to choose pre-built question sets or create their own.

DeFluri created graphics depicting three different-sized piles of treasure, a knight’s helmet and two dragon heads, one breathing fire, using the Procreate computer program. DeFluri’s work will be credited on Voces’ website.

“I am very grateful to have been presented with an opportunity to have my work published by Voces,” DeFluri said. “It means so much to me that my art will benefit students and teachers from all other the world.”

DeFluri experimented with multiple designs, then revised her chosen concept several times before the graphics arrived at their final form.

On the fire-breathing dragon graphic, “I initially drew the flames too small and had to redraw them a total of three times to get them as fierce as the Voces team imagined they should be,” DeFluri said.

DeFluri plans to attend Virginia Commonwealth University’s School of the Arts after graduation and continue working in graphic design.

She is the daughter of Susan and Paul DeFluri of Smithfield.