One hallway at Riverside-Brookfield High School just got a lot brighter.
In recent weeks five RB students, including two incoming freshmen, worked with two recent RB graduates to transform a bland wall into a work of art. Christy Kral and Natalie Shugailo, both 2006 graduates of RB, led a two week summer workshop where the students painted a mural on a hallway wall at RB.
The mural combines a lower half of bright wavy lines and a representation of the sun and a top half of sometimes whimsical symbols of many of the clubs, activities, sports and classes at RB.
The RB students who created the mural were junior Emily Andrulis, sophomores Aaron Perez-Garcia and Deanasia Sanders, and incoming freshmen Katherine Alaks and Katherine Andrulis.
“I think it looks really good,” said Emily Andrulis, who said that she is more musician and singer than painter. “I’m really happy with how it turned out. I’m going to come by this hallway a lot, because the music department is right there and I usually walk through here, so I’m excited to tell my friends, ‘Hey, look, I did that.'”
Since the two-week workshop ended, Wooden, three-dimensional cutouts of students were added to the lower half of the mural, and the top half of the mural was filled out.
Kral and Shugailo were recruited to lead the project by former RB art teacher and fine arts department chairman Jon Grice who recently left RB to take a job as the chairman of the fine arts department at Stevenson High School.
“We’ve been friends for a long time and we both do art,” said Shugailo, who recently graduated from Northern Illinois University with a bachelor’s degree in fine arts with a major in painting and is now working as a freelance artist.
Kral, who attended Illinois State University, plans to become an art teacher and, this fall, will do her student teaching at York High School in Elmhurst and at Walker Elementary School in Hinsdale.
RB social worker Mari Mortensen walked by the mural one day and loved what she saw.
“Wow, it’s bright, it’s fabulous and because I go down this hall every day it’s going to make every day fantastic and beautiful,” Mortensen said. “I love the color selection. It’s a great antidote to all of our beige walls.”