Monday, May 21, 2018
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Northview seniors put splashy, worldly imprint on school hall


Rob Hadley adds color to Sylvania Northview's C Hall. He sketched the mural and painted it with the help of fellow seniors.


While flat on his back and staring at the ceiling, Rob Hadley mapped out the world this summer.

From the floor in Northview High School's C Hall, the artist envisioned plans for a multi-culture painting project, a colorful endeavor which transformed the walls and ceiling into an eye-popping, globe-trotting work of art.

Rob had help from other Sylvania Northview seniors. But he is credited as the artistic talent behind the murals.

Some people wondered if the painting crew would finish in time for the start of classes last week.

Rob said their anxiety motivated the crew.

Stewart Jesse, Northview principal, said the crew "did an outstanding job."

"It was very well done," Mr. Jesse said. "The extra time was worth it."

Painting the senior hall is a Northview tradition, dating back more than a decade.

Typically, incoming seniors brush on strokes of color for a couple of weeks, updating scenes and splashing on their own senior style.

This summer? Rob logged 210 hours on the project.

Some other seniors worked on the hallway from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekdays for six weeks, Mallory Apel said.

Rob's father, John Hadley, paid for gallons of paint and someone donated ceiling lights that have been installed in the hallway to brighten the area.

This summer marked the first time that students painted the entire length of the hallway's ceiling with themed sections. Since 1996, the ceiling has been adrift with clouds on a sky-blue backdrop.

"It was old and worn-down looking," said senior Katie Smith, one of 15 seniors on the "People Who Painted" list.

Each year, seniors try to "one up" the previous class.

"We wanted the hall to show our class spirit," said Moe Moubarak, one of the painters.

The hallway, several seniors said, will be an important part of the Class of 2008's legacy.

"As a new senior class, we want to set higher standards," Rob said.

Bright, vibrant surroundings mean "everyone's happier," said Rob, who cut short his summer job and vacation to work on the painting project.

Scenes from around the world, which reflect the school's culturally diverse groups, blend in with pop culture artwork from one end of the hall to the other.

Various scenes feature the school's homecoming theme of An Evening in Black & White; Charlie Brown characters; the names of all 318 seniors in bubbles, and photographs from the Aug. 15 senior picnic.

"This is the first time for senior pictures to be on the walls," Mallory said.

Scenes from around the world include the U.S. Capitol; Parliament's Big Ben in Great Britain; the Taj Mahal, and the Sydney Opera House in Australia.

Art on the ceiling includes a map of the continents.

To put the continents in perspective, Rob did the preliminary work on the floor.

"I would just lie down and stare at the ceiling," he said. When he had the global connection figured out in his head, he started sketching.

Rob spent a lot of time painting while lying on his back on scaffolding.

Some high school staff members who didn't know Rob's name would mention to the principal that "Michelangelo" was painting again in Sistine Chapel-style.

The end cap of the hallway was reserved for a favorite saying of the seniors, something that Pam Theil, the high school's orchestra director, often tells the students:

"No matter where you go, no matter the weather, always bring your own sunshine."

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