New mural on campus documents the SCHS experience


Tatiana Serrano-Zeledon

Muralist Paul Gonzalez works hard to complete the piece.

As soon as senior Areiah Malanzo walks onto campus, the bright colors of a new mural catch her eye. She looks over to see her entire time as an SCHS student painted across the wall.

“My favorite part of the mural is how it is based on real people,” Malanzo said. “All of the events (painted on the mural) represent my personal experience.”

Muralist Paul J.Gonzalez was commissioned to create a mural on the side of the small gym about student life. The mural was planned at the end of last school year and painting began early August.

Vice Principal of Activities, Facilities and Communication Erin Brown and former student Sofia Kritikopoulos felt it was important to incorporate the students’ ideas into the creative process. They decided to create a mural committee. The group – including junior Emmy Ngyuen, sophomore Blake Levins and class of 2019 alumni Vince Velayo and Kritikopoulos – met and collaborated with the muralist.

“Every theme, content and message is different depending on the school,” Gonzalez said. “I make sure to get an idea of what they want to say and how they want to say it.”

The mural was mainly inspired by photographs of student life, according to Gonzalez. The committee all sent him images of their experiences at SCHS.

“These descriptions and photos helped Paul bring our school vibe to life,” Kritkopoulos said.

Gonzalez created a digital sketch of the mural, all aspects based on the submitted photos of student activity. The mural features various SCHS activities, including BOTC, sports, STEM and marching band.

“The mural is inspired by the journey from freshman orientation to the day of graduation,” Levins said. “It covers our school’s most important events and what sets SCHS apart from other high schools.”

Quality, Gonzalez said, was his number one goal when painting the mural. He used certain techniques so the mural can be a trademark to the campus for a long time.

“I do what I can to make it last as long as possible so people can appreciate it for years to come,” Gonzalez said. “It can last up to 20 years without the sun affecting it.”

The mural was finished on Wednesday, Oct.10, 2019. Senior Bismah Hamid is one of many students who was excited for this new change on campus.

“When I first saw the mural, I was shocked,” Hamid said. “I wasn’t used to seeing something so bright and colorful on our campus. It was so pretty to look at.”


Check out Paul Gonzalez on his social media!

Instagram: pauljgonzalezartist