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The story behind that heartwarming image you’re seeing on Google’s homepage today

google doodle

Every time someone has opened a fresh Google Search page today, Florida high school student Sophie Araque-Liu has, via her artwork, has reminded them of the importance of mental health and of caring for yourself.

Hers was the winning artwork chosen as part of the Doodle for Google 2022 contest. Her simple yet profound entry depicts a daughter in an emotional embrace with her mother. And all day, it’s greeting visitors to Google’s main search page. As you can see above, her image takes over the part of the logo where the two O’s would otherwise be.

High schooler’s artwork on the Google Search homepage

Her winning entry fulfilled a specific prompt from Google as part of this year’s Doodle for Google contest. Students were asked to design their artwork around the theme of “I care for myself by …” The search giant announced the finalists in July. And then, today, Google unveiled Sophie’s as the winner for the “thoughtfulness, heart, and artistry” her entry presented.

Moreover, Google added that Sophie’s Doodle — titled Not Alone — speaks to the importance of leaning on a support system. And of asking for help in tough times.

“I care for myself by accepting others’ care for me,” Sophie said, in a statement attached to her winning Google Doodle that adorns the Google Search page. “Often I struggle to shoulder a burden on my own, and forget that I have so many people, like my mom, who care about me and want to help me. Opening up and letting others support me not only relieves my stress. It lets me tackle things I could never do on my own.”

In truth, we spend so much time in a kind of rapid-fire, transactional relationship with the Google Search page — query entered, results attained — that it’s nice to take a brief moment and see something like this to accompany that digital interaction.

“Asking for help”

“I chose to focus on the theme of asking for help based on my own experiences,” Sophie continued, in an interview with Google. “A couple years ago, I was struggling a lot mentally and I was honestly pretty embarrassed and scared to tell my friends and family. But when I did open up to them, I was met with so much love and support. So I really wanted to encourage others to not be afraid to look for help if they need it!”

For her winning entry, Sophie won a $30,000 college scholarship. As well as a $50,000 technology package for her school.

Andy Meek profile photo

Andy Meek is a reporter who has covered media, entertainment, and culture for over 20 years. His work has appeared in outlets including The Guardian, Forbes, and The Financial Times, and he’s written for BGR since 2015. Andy's coverage includes technology and entertainment, and he has a particular interest in all things streaming. Over the years, he’s interviewed legendary figures in entertainment and tech that range from Stan Lee to John McAfee, Peter Thiel, and Reed Hastings.