Students work on the mural under the guidance of Wendy Wood. /Submitted

HHSS students make their mark in Haliburton

By Vivian Collings
The picturesque mural of Ritchie Falls canvasing the wall of the entrance at Haliburton Home Hardware is all thanks to a few students from Haliburton Highlands Secondary School.
With the guidance of local painter Wendy Wood, a Grade 11 art class spent a couple of months learning to mix colours and practiced landscape painting before presenting Home Hardware with the finished piece.
“The owner envisioned a mural that he hoped would be done by high school students. It totally opened the door, and I just went straight to Wendy Wood, and everything fell into place,” said Kevin Dunlop, paint department supervisor at Haliburton Home Hardware.
From there, Karen Gervais, department head of arts at HHSS, was contacted, and students got to work with Wood’s help.
Each student started with a small-scale version of the painting.
“It got everyone familiar with the area. I provided the photos, and we did sketches,” Wood said. “From that, I had done a sketch to start with, and they transferred the sketch onto the board. From there, we moved it into the back room of the art room, and it probably took about two months to complete.”
Ritchie Falls was the subject matter for the painting because it was a familiar place to both Wood and the students.
The mural is painted on wood panels with acrylic paint, both provided by Home Hardware.
Three students said mixing colours was one of the biggest learning points for them during the process.
“It was very educational. She taught me a lot. With mixing paint, I never would have thought to add blues, and reds, and greens all together,” said Kamryn Holden.
Veronica Beynon said she now uses techniques from the project in her own personal art.
“It was a lot of fun, especially with the opportunity to have a piece of work out in the community,” the Grade 11 student said.