PAA Student Donates Handcrafted Mosaic Cross

May 01, 2006 | Heather Fowler

A Portland Adventist Academy student presented a handcrafted mosaic cross during chapel as a gift to the school.

When faced with the task of a senior project, a project each senior at PAA must imagine, create and defend, Deisy Cholula knew that she wanted Jesus to be the focus. Feeling that art was a weak area for her, she decided to strengthen it by devoting more than 70 hours to creating this mosaic from scratch.

Cholula, an avid basketball player, wanted her senior project to be something she had never attempted before. “I didn’t want to take the easy way out. Sports and photography come easy to me," she explained. "I wanted to make something with my hands, as a gift back to God.”

With Jesus as her inspiration, Cholula worked with art teacher Mark Kooy to come up with ideas. Kooy showed her how to fire the handmade tiles in a campus kiln and form the tiles into a masterpiece.

Choosing to use PAA's school colors, gold and blue, Cholula meticulously shaped the pattern. Blue was used for the background, gold for the cross, a light gold for the silhouette of Jesus, and a small amount of red tiles around the hands, feet and head to represent Christ's blood.

“I wanted to symbolize that Jesus was there on the cross and died for all of us, but it is just a silhouette now,” Cholula said. “He was there, but now He is gone, ready to take us home.”