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Graffiti Talk: Chalk Messages

Inspirational chalk messages have been popping up around BC.

Emily Sears

October 25, 2011

What would you want to tell the entire BC Campus if you could anonymously write it in florescent sidewalk chalk?

 

Inspirational messages have been spotted around campus, drawn on sidewalks and sides of buildings. Some say positive messages like, “Hold on,” “You’re beautiful,” or “Keep smiling.”

 

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Messages on the wall of East River Hall

More recently, on the side of East River Hall, students wrote, “I Believe in...” and asked other students to write on the bricks what they believed in. Some of the answers included Jesus Christ, second chances, China, dancing, compassion, sacrifice, dreams, sports, Harry Potter, and forgiveness.

 

This latest mural was an anonymous follow-up to an inspirational graffiti chalked last week by Criminal Justice major Heather Paisley and Criminal Justice major Courtney Dutton. They randomly came up with the idea, went outside in the middle of the night, and tried to spread the messages of hope.

 

“We're really into suicide, depression, and cutting prevention, so that's our way of getting our message across and letting everyone know that they're loved and just make people randomly smile if they were having a bad day or something,” said Paisley, a senior from Grayson, Va.

 

Students reacted positively to the messages. Some had stronger reactions than the artists ever imagined.

 

“I heard one really special reaction,” said Paisley. “I'm not going to mention her name, but she told me that she was having a really bad day and when she saw the "You're not alone" that I wrote, it saved her life. When she told me this I think I was frozen in time.”

 

What started out as a fun idea turned into something empowering.

 

“Each message makes me feel better, makes me want to smile more and talk to others,” said Pip Pattison, a sophomore from Radford, Va. “I don’t know everyone’s story, but reading those messages makes me want to.”

 

Such positive reactions make students want to continue marking up the campus in a positive way.

 

“I think inspirational messages should be all around campus in some shape or form because you really never know who needs a smile,” said Paisley. “Life is hard, but when I was outside with Courtney that night, I've never been so happy and glad I was alive.”

 

 

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