CCAC South Campus student artist creates stunning mural, receives memorial scholarship
PITTSBURGH—Visitors to the Community College of Allegheny County’s South Campus Theatre are sure to pause and gaze at the new 8-foot by 26-foot mural that now graces the entrance. Even more impressive than the striking artwork, which features five legendary theatre personalities, is the fact that the student artist started painting in 2015 when he took his first painting class at CCAC to fulfill a humanities elective.
Previously a business major, Podomik changed his major to art not long after picking up a paintbrush. Associate Art Professor Scott Cornish noticed his natural ability when he produced his first painting, an “amazing” landscape. Podomik took every painting and art class that was available and also spent much of his free time and all summer long at his easel, often out of doors.
“He continues to progress and progress and progress,” said Cornish. “I’m quite proud of him; he’s really come a long way, and he’s able to inspire a lot of other students who see how hard he works.”
Cornish encouraged Podomik to paint a mural at the campus, and CCAC Theatre Professor and Department Head George Jaber asked him to create one for the South Campus Theatre. Jaber awarded Podomik the Kevin Dilworth Memorial Theatre and Dance Scholarship, which funded the project.
The 22-year-old did all the research and chose the five subjects for the mural: Vladimir Danchenko, Eugene Ionesco, James Baldwin, Tennessee Williams and August Wilson. He spent close to 170 hours on the project, starting in mid-December and painting almost every day during the winter break.
Following his graduation in May with an Associate of Science in Art, Podomik will transfer to a four-year institution to pursue a bachelor’s degree in Fine Art. Eventually, he plans to earn a master’s degree in Visual Arts.
Pictured: Tyler Podomik with mural outside the CCAC South Campus Theatre