Sage and Mrs. Trantham in front of the mural Sage painted.

In the heart of Johnston Elementary (JES), a vibrant piece of art is captivating people of all ages. 

Over winter break, A.C. Reynolds High School (ACRHS) sophomore Sage Roscoe painted a mural in the media center. The beautiful piece shows a young girl holding a flower for a black bear to sniff. As a way to incorporate artwork from those at the school, fourth graders colored their own flowers and placed them along Sage’s creation. 

“I love that I got to do something that the staff and students at JES will see everyday,” said Sage. “It’s special that the students were able to contribute by putting their own artwork into this piece.”

Sage devoted over 35 hours to making this one of a kind mural. For JES Principal Angie Trantham, incorporating brightly colored flowers from her students was the missing piece to the puzzle. 

“This school belongs to the students,” she said. “We always want them to take pride and ownership in this space as well as the activities that happen at school. Students see themselves as artists - seeing current Buncombe County Schools students and former JES students create amazing murals provides a mirror for our students to see themselves in successful roles for the future.” 

Mrs. Trantham said she sees her school as a blank canvas. In the fall of 2023, a former JES student came to paint a mural on the outside of the school. She said there will be more artwork to come by other talented students. 

Sage is taking her first high school art class at ACRHS this spring, and she is excited to grow her talents more. 

“I love that I can finally take art at Reynolds,” she said. “This is definitely something I want to continue doing. My inspiration for this piece came from my dad and family. Plus it felt very Asheville to me, and I wanted to tie in elements of the school and area we all live in.”

Student pointing to the flower he colored on the wall.