Painting a Brighter Future: Character Development in the MHS Weight Room

“The featured image for this space needed to capture the attention of our student-athletes. Ultimately, they need a space that welcomes all student-athletes, needs to communicate the intended message, yet is a modern and stands out. The artist selected a graphic art style where the image appears to stand out three-dimensionally from the space surrounding it. We are especially happy to highlight the 6 featured elements of character; Character, Honor, Integrity, Excellence, Focus and Strength. Student-athletes need to continue to build their strength, skills, and studies … while continuing to develop their character.”

To add to the growing number of public art projects in our community, the McCormick Arts Council (MACK) recently installed the new Character Matters Mural in Student-Athlete Weight Room at the McCormick High School. The McCormick High School Athletic Department has reached out to the McCormick Arts Council (MACK) to assist with a unique project to feature character development and use elements to highlight the ideals of a “CHIEF” as a student-athlete. The new MHS weight room is designed to serve all students and the intention is to use the Painting a Brighter Future program to provide inspirational, engaging, and unique artwork for our student-athletes.

This project was made possible through support from the Freshwater Coast Community Foundation and The Friends of the Library. It is also an extension of our Art in Basic Curriculum mission to provide students with quality art education and advance our student’s educational experience by providing access to the arts for daily learning experiences. We are highly encouraged by the continued commitment to the arts and increased recognition of the value that arts offer our community. We believe these projects are enhancing our student’s educational experiences. Thank you to everyone involved!

“Art is the one thing that makes you enjoy the world. Art is far more important, far more than just being important to the world, it is the world. It is the world.” – Damion Johnson

Meet the Artist: Damion Johnson

Damion Johnson is a proud honor graduate of Claflin University where he earned his BA in Professional/Studio Art. He currently serves as Art Instructor at Orangeburg Wilkinson High School in Orangeburg South Carolina. Creating and sharing is his passion so his twelve-year career as an educator has been very fulfilling. He has earned the honor of Teacher of The Year and countless other related honors during his stint as a teacher. He is a founding member of the Orangeburg County School of the Arts and Humanities and S.C.R.A.P. As a member of (S.C.R.A.P) South Carolina Rural Arts Project, his murals can be seen throughout the state of South Carolina. At his beloved Alma Mater Claflin University, he also holds a seat in The Living Legends Hall of Fame and also serves as a member of the Art departments Board of Advisors. Damion is a featured artist on  ABC, WIS news, and the Friends of Columbia Museum of Art.



Painting a Brighter Future is a public art program designed to engage our community members, students, and visitors and achieve shared community goals. Our goal is to enhance our community’s aesthetics, build community pride, and share our rich stories through public art.

Painting a Brighter Future is a public art program designed to engage our community members, students, and visitors. We are able to combine the intentions of this public art program and help our schools deliver a series of engaging, rich, and vibrant paintings designed to make the student feel immersed in the learning environment. Each mural enhances the campus, adheres to the curriculum standards, and utilizes the arts as an important learning partner in providing a quality educational experience to our students. 

Our completed projects include – The Main Street Mural, Historic Willington, Plum Branch – Long Building, and the Learning Walls at McCormick Elementary School; “Solar Systems”, “Oceans” and “Outdoor Stage”.