This article was written by our wonderful art teacher, Mrs. Carter.
After hundreds of volunteer hours and several months of Corona Virus delays the art department at Juab High School finally finished the project that was started in the fall of 2019. The original design for the lettering and layout was created by the teacher and many students submitted their visions of what best represented Nephi to fill each letter. From those original artworks five were chosen to be on the final mural. Erica Murdock came up with rendering of the old mill for the letter N. Jasmine Felt depicted the Ute Stampede for the E. Ayron Raynor came up with the first idea for the red cliffs and agriculture on the P, but had graduated and left town before that part was ready to be painted, so Evelyn Roundy who had worked on the sky and background stepped in and created a similar design. For the H, Michelle Bunker started the Whitmore, but was doing online school at Rocky Ridge, so Adyson Heap agreed to complete the painting. Nikole Bunker was the artist for the wheat for the letter I. Emrie Rollins spent many hours taping off the letters and painting the perspective shadows.
The process started with the original sketches and students helping with research on the best methods to paint a mural. After it was determined that painting on aluminum was the most permanent and portable way to create a mural they researched the best paints, chose colors to use, and got an estimate for all the materials. The entire advanced art class took a field trip to Custom Signworks to see how the professionals worked. Wyet Ingram and Keti Garrett, former JHS art students, offered to order the aluminum panels and install the mural when it was completed. The information was compiled into a presentation, and Nikole, Jasmine, and Emrie took the proposal to the Nephi City Council in the fall. The council was delighted with the idea and gave the green light to begin. Custom Signworks took the original 8.5″ x 11” sketch and enlarged and printed it to fit the 4 panels that are 8’ x 16′. Students helped cut the letters out, tape the huge stencil to the panels, and draw the design. The mural was at the sign shop during this process and while the sky was completed with spray paint so all of that was done after school hours. The mural was then moved to the art room at the high school where the students taped off the lettering and handprinted each letter. Work was progressing when the school was closed in March. No one was allowed to work again until May, so students came in after online school to work whenever they could. They spent many hours during the summer and when school started again in the fall to hand paint each stroke. Due to social distancing restrictions much of the time the students were working solo or two at a time. Finally in Nov. we took the mural back to the sign shop to have a clear seal coat applied. Hopefully it will help beautify the community for many years to come.
Travis Worwood, Assistant to the City Administrator/Treasurer asked if Nephi City could use the mural as one of the City Logos for the website and other branding items. He said, “I just wanted to say this turned out amazing! This is one of the best representations of our city I have ever seen. I don’t know who all contributed to the mural, but it is phenomenal!” The art department would like to thank Nephi City for funding the project, Diane Jones for providing and repainting the wall for the mural, and Custom Signworks for sharing their expertise, printing the pattern, providing a space to work, and donating the installation of the mural. A special thanks to the students who dedicated so much of their own time and talent to persevere and complete the project.