By Devon Lucas, student reporter
Recently OCHS students may have noticed inspirational pinecones with googly eyes in the most peculiar of places throughout the school.
The AP Studio Art students’ and their Advisor Nicholas Liebrecht wanted to spread positive vibes through the halls after a poster with a racial slur surfaced recently online. The post went viral on social media creating uproar within the school and even leading to a walkout to protest against racism.
Liebrecht’s students’ discussed how they would handle the situation if their friends were the ones’ holding the sign and the feedback was just as negative. Many of his students were saying things like “we wouldn’t be friends anymore” and “I would throw fists if I was in the parking at that time.” Liebrecht emphasized to his students that it’s important to be positive during a situation like this. “You don’t and can’t fight negativity with negativity you have to get a positive message out there,” said Liebrecht.
Originally the class planned to make posters to raise positive awareness until some pinecones were discovered when a student needed a mesh design for an abstract painting. Liebrecht had a bag of pinecones collecting dust on his shelf. He gave bag to the student, which left him with just pinecones. So, Liebrecht did what he does best and started putting googly eyes on them, which then lead to a creative and fun way to spread positive messages. “I put googly eyes on everything that I can,” said Liebrecht. “It’s my hobby.”
A total of 25 pines cones were made and distributed in various places within the school. The pine cones consisted of two googly eyes, two pipe cleaner arms, one bead noise, and an encouraging message such as ‘strength requires kindness’ attached. The pinecones were found in bathrooms, on bathroom sinks, on window seals and even drinking fountains. “I first saw one in the D/E girls bathroom and it made me smile,” said junior Lindsey Ramage.
Liebrecht is unsure about whether the pinecones made a difference. He knows that most of the pinecones were stolen, but he hopes that one lonely pinecone ends up on a teacher's desk and is shared with students throughout the trimesters.
The AP Studio Art students’ were very satisfied with their creations and proud to be apart of a group trying to make a difference. “I feel it’s something that our school needs right now,” said senior Trevor Brown.