Student Spotlight: August Artist of the Month

Get to Know Central Hardin’s Horror Connoisseur Eddie Paris and His Experience as a Young Artist
Photo and artwork courtesy of senior Eddie Paris.
Photo and artwork courtesy of senior Eddie Paris.

Central Hardin art teacher Antonio Menendez has made it one of his educational goals to recognize outstanding artists. To do so, he has used personal judgment to name a student “Artist of the Month” every flip of the calendar, creating a poster in their honor to be hung in the hallway. The Central Times wants to delve a little deeper into who these individuals are and feature their talents, stories, and artistic aims on our site.

For the 2023-2024 school year, senior Eddie Paris was named the August Artist of the Month. Congratulations, Eddie! May the spotlight shine effervescently down on you and your work.

Paris is an avid artist who enjoys creating fun pieces involving “cartoony shapes and bright color palettes.” Much of his finished content, as well as casual sketching, correlates with the movies and music that he is into at that point in his life. These alternative artforms influence his own personal style, as they inspire the themes, figures, and overarching aesthetic he follows.

A lot of my art is horror movie fanart and basically all my original characters are goth.

— Senior Eddie Paris

As an Art IV student, the work he creates within the classroom brings Paris great pride. However, the majority of his passion for art comes from personal experimentation and further application of the techniques learned through Menedez’s instruction into outside projects.

“As far as specific artistic endeavors, I mainly do art for fun as well as occasionally doing commissions, and I also do a lot of D.I.Y. clothing, namely patches, which I’ve made for myself and my friends…” Paris explained. “I’d like to branch out though, so I like to do art for other projects when I can.”

One of his most recent personal projects was a patch captioned with, “I lost my glasses in the Rancid mosh pit.” For context, Paris attended the hard rock and metal festival, Louder Than Life, in Louisville, KY this past month. It was here that he saw the rock band, Rancid, perform, and unfortunately misplaced his spectacles in the chaos of concert-going. He wanted to create a patch that displayed his experience and reflected his interest in Rancid with a touch of humor.

Looking back, Paris remembered his elation in hearing he had been named the August Artist of the Month. He reflected on the immense and impressive progress he has made over the last few years in his art, not just regarding technicality, but also perspective and approach. A common sentiment in art students, one Paris himself had for a period of his life, is that realism is simply impossible. The ability to replicate an image, oftentimes still life, in photographic detail is not an easy task, and for some, it can be frustrating and boring. That being said, Paris has evolved to appreciate all forms of art, even the ones that don’t necessarily match up with his personal style.

“I’ve taught myself to be excited about these things, even though I don’t practice them as much as my regular cartoony stuff. It’s a lot easier to get better when I have the approach of, ‘this isn’t something I do all the time, but doing this project can help me improve.’”

Working in a classroom and creating art with the support of peers and instructors has been something Paris has grown up with. With graduation approaching, the question of what came next arose.

“I definitely plan to pursue art in college. Specifically, I’d love to do concept art, character design, or character animation. There have been a ton of amazing animated movies and shows in the past few years and I would be so excited to make something like that,” he expressed. “Some specific examples are Across the Spider-verse, The Mitchells vs the Machines, Puss in Boots: The Last Wish, and Wendell & Wild.”

Paris plans to further incorporate horror into his projects, especially given the new freedoms collegiate art courses offer. He is an expressive and devoted fan of this genre and feels strongly that animation is underutilized within it. There has been an influx of popularity in horror artwork within the media, and he hopes to see that surge of appreciation translate into more interesting projects in the next few years.

“Projects like Jack Stauber’s Opal are really incredible, and while I don’t plan to work in stop-motion, I think making something like that would be really neat.”

Keep your eyes peeled, you may just see Paris’ name in the credits of the next big horror film!

In the meantime, one way our August Artist of the Month has gotten his name and work out there is through commission work. The majority of his business circulates online where customers take interest in his style and initiate a conversation about wanting their own piece. Paris talks directly with the individual about what exactly they want in this piece, and gets to work.

I’m very glad I get to share my art; I’ve been drawing basically since I could hold a pencil, and I’ve worked really hard, especially over the last couple of years, to make things that I feel are representative of what I want to eventually create professionally.

— Senior Eddie Paris

Many of his online friends also do commissions, so with their guidance and further research on his own, Paris is able to work out pricing, payment methods, and strategic marketing as times change. Many of his favorite commissions to complete are when a customer requests a character from a movie, comic, television show, or game he likes. That nostalgic feeling of tracing a familiar form brings a smile to his face. Similarly, when he has the chance to design a character completely off scratch or based on a reference image, Paris is reminded of his true passion for the artform.

“It’s really cool to get to help someone make a character, and I feel honored to be the first one to draw said character. It’s a really fun experience.”

For those who do not know Eddie personally, you are encouraged to reach out, take a look at what his current project is, or even request a commission! Recognizing the immense time, effort, and fake blood often put into a painting means a lot, and if studio art isn’t your thing, maybe spark up a convo about horror movies or some good ol’ hard rock. Central Hardin has some incredibly talented artists, Eddie being one of them, and they deserve a moment in the spotlight.

View Comments (1)
More to Discover

Comments (1)

All The Central Times Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • M

    Ms. WorthamOct 26, 2023 at 8:01 pm

    Yesssss! Well deserved! Congrats Eddie!