Art students from Key West High School will be seeing their handiwork move through town in the coming week, when 10 bicycles the students painted are added to the rental fleet at Island Safari Rentals.
Twenty students in Shannon Perkins' advanced drawing and painting class, and members of the National Art Honor Society added their creative colors to adult-sized bicycles in a project that combined competition and community goodwill.
Students worked in teams of two to design the 10 adult women's bicycles using paint donated by the local Sherwin-Williams store. A portion of the rental fees from the painted bicycles will be donated to the high school.
"Half of the money we get from Island Safari will go back into the high school art department, and the students will decide what local charity gets the other half," said Perkins, adding that the money may be given to Special Olympics, a soup kitchen or any other nonprofit group the students choose.
Marty Lange, who works for Island Safari owner Will Duran, conceived of the project, and Perkins has asked local officials to judge the 10 student designs.
Duran will provide cash prizes to the first-, second- and third-place teams, Perkins said, adding that Lange disassembled the bikes for the students to paint, giving them more room to paint the bikes' fenders, rims and even spokes.
"There's one that's done in a black-and-white domino-type of pattern," she said.
Another bike is painted to look like the Scooby Doo Mystery Machine, while another boasts fluffy, white clouds on a sky-blue backdrop. "The kids really did a great job. They painted every part they could get their hands on."
Lange and Duran will pick up the bikes Tuesday and add them to Island Safari's rental fleet on Greene Street.
"We're hoping to make it an annual project," Duran told The Citizen on Friday.