Wall art project benefits PVCC students


Paradise Valley Community College students create
art on KSC walls during continued construction


When Paradise Valley Community College student April Adams was asked by her art teacher to envision an edifying experience that she could create into an art piece, she immediately visualized winning the Colgate-Palmolive Incentive Trip to New Orleans. As the number one recruiter for her division of the company in the early 1990s, Adams and her husband were treated to a private dinner held on the 50 yard line of the field of the New Orleans Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

“It was a once in a life experience I will always remember,” Adams recalled as she designed her image. “The jumbotron flashed ‘C ongratulations April,’ …and a marching band played as they marched along the outside of the field .”

From Nov. 5 through Nov. 21, 2012, PVCC Fine Arts faculty, David Bradley supervised 18 art students as they sketched, marked and painted and designed images onto sheetrock panels in the Kranitz Student Center, currently undergoing remodeling .

Sandy McDill, interim dean of Administrative Services at PVCC, whose office is in the ongoing construction remodel zone in the KSC building, wanted to do something to beautify the long, unsightly first floor hallway. After checking with campus and construction authorities, McDill sent an email to Bradley affording his students an opportunity to display their talent.

Bradley says he envisioned circles that would allow multiple individual designs by various students and yet unify all the art into one mural.

“I had to find a way to create a sense of order in all the diverse concepts, so circles seemed like they would work the best,” says Bradley.

He then developed guidelines that would allow his art students to explore and express their own ideas and meaning within an edifying context.

“I gave my students a list to choose from,” says Bradley. “They could chose a time when they learned something new, helped someone, received helped, discovered or explored something meaningful.”

As the mural progressed, Bradley said that the biggest pay-off for his students was the on going personal feedback from observers who appreciated their work.

Donna McMullenrom PVCC Public Safety, says that as the art students worked, she enjoyed the evolving pieces of art. “I like the various colors in the art the best.”

Walter Cheatham,  public safety dispatcher, requested a beach scene and Bradley went to work on the suggestion.
Now Cheatham wonders how artwork will be preserved.

“Is someone going to cut the pieces out of the wall?” says Cheatham.

Bradley says that although some works of arts are meant to live only a short time, the students’ work can be preserved through documentation, so he has been taking progressive photographs.

Zoe Gentry a PVCC freshman with an undecided major created three pieces with the chosen themes of a ship, writing stories and journeys. Gentry says she enjoyed the task of working with acrylics.

“It was fun. I don’t draw that big so blowing up an idea was challenging,” she says. “The hardest part was getting over my anxiety of drawing in public.”

Emily Fassold, a second year PVCC student who is contemplating a career in computer coding, felt enjoyed the project . “Mine is the weird one,” she says of her painting. “Using paint on a piece that big was rewarding…also, standing back and knowing that I made that was very satisfying.“

Angelo Khammo, a second year PVCC student majoring in art, also appreciated the opportunity .


“Being out there where others could watch me create and then give comments was the most challenging and rewarding,” Khammo says.


Bradley intends to keep the process going throughout spring 2013 .



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