Senior Project Spotlight: Andrea Gutierrez

Many kids grow up doing arts and crafts, but not many transfer those creative skills to later in life. Andrea Gutierrez, talented artist and photographer, has always been incredibly creative and most likely will always stay the same way. When the time came around to figure what to do for her senior project, Gutierrez knew that she wanted to do a mural, one that would leave a lasting effect long after she’s gone from Woodland.

Now, what once used to be a blank white wall is a community piece of art that’s bound to last for many years to come.

Gutierrez first started her art career finger painting and gluing popsicle sticks together, which has boosted her creativity. ¨I’ve always been one of those creative kids who always loved arts and crafts and things like that,” says Gutierrez. ¨But I really started getting involved when I came to Woodland by taking art classes and getting involved in that way.”

She never expected to make an amazing mural that will boost Woodland´s school spirit for many years to come.

“I didn’t want to do something that like everyone else was doing,” states Gutierrez. “I was like, find something interesting and different to do that stood out and would leave a mark on the school.”

“Find something interesting and different to do that stood out and would leave a mark on the school.”

Gutierrez had originally planned to make her mural a series of canvases that would be displayed in the corridor of the second floor stairwell leading to the cafeteria. Her plans changed when Paul Geary, English teacher, suggested seeking administration approval on the mural not being on canvases, but on the actual wall where the canvases would have been displayed. Gutierrez, immediately loving the idea, instantly went to Kurt Ogren, Woodland Principal, to ask for permission.

“I went and I talked to Mr. Ogren, who met with superintendent and it all got approved in less than two hours,” said Gutierrez.

The proposed mural would not just be any mural painted with flowers and delicate scenery. Gutierrez intended to include the entire Woodland community, specifically the class of 2019, in the making of the project. Her original idea was to have all of the senior class’ handprints on the wall adjacent to the staircase, but excitement over the mural quickly grew. This inspired Gutierrez to add to the wall in order to include other Woodland students and not just the graduating class of 2019, but this would require much more space than one wall.

“A lot of people were really interested in involving themselves in it and I feel like it would be really cool to like even like incorporate other grades in it as well.” Gutierrez plans on requesting access to the wall opposite of the mural’s current wall in order to make the mural a symbol of the whole Woodland community.

“I want my senior project to show  other grades that come to Woodland as we’re leaving, other students that start  to come in, they’ll be able to see it and see the community that we have in the school as a whole and how close we all are, how we’ve all impacted the school in some way.”

Here are some photos of the mural, taken by Jake Veillette: