SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO)– Getting a perfect score on any exam can be a challenge. But that’s what one Lincoln High School graduate achieved on the AP studio art exam.
Benton Keller was one of 152 people in the entire world to get a perfect score on this test. This is very impressive considering there were 34,000 people who took the exam.
It all started when Keller got his first camera, which came from a unique situation.
“I came from a very poor family that didn’t have a lot and my first camera was found out in the garbage, and it worked,” said Keller. “And I’ve used it and it gave me such an interesting idea of just kind of looking through, not my own eyes but with a lens, which is so tangible.”
Since getting a camera his passion for photography has only grown, and was the basis for his AP studio art exam project. It consisted of multiple photos focusing on the topic of what we can and cannot control.
“It focused a lot on people and faces and how we transition emotions with different stages of life,” said Keller.
His portfolio was judged by four people, who all gave Keller a perfect score.
“These are college level pieces, so they are looking at skill level. They’re looking at ideas, and inquiry, and materials and process, and how we came to that and then there’s a writing section that goes along with that,” said Sarah Winterscheidt, Lincoln High School art teacher.
A perfect score is nearly impossible to achieve.
“AP recommends that you do not set this as a goal for a student because there are so few students who receive a perfect score,” said Winterscheidt.
For Keller, photography is something he plans to continue incorporating throughout his life.
“I want to continue it as much as I can to create more pieces to show the world. Because I have always felt that there’s definitely more out there and the more people maybe open their eyes a bit to what’s around them the more we can kind of communicate and become closer as a species,” said Keller.
Keller graduated from Lincoln High school last year and is now working in industrial fabrication and welding.