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Panther Spotlight


8th Grader Creates Anime Art

When Elizabeth Garcia-Juarez was in the fourth grade, she discovered anime, a genre of animation that originates from Japan. Now an 8th grader, she has gone beyond watching the animation on television and film to creating her own characters as an artist.

Anime characters are colorfully styled with exaggerated features, and plots surrounding them are usually complex and themes meaningful. It is an art form that depends much on the artist’s ability to express emotion in the faces of the characters.

“I really loved the way the characters looked and how they looked so powerful and confident,” Elizabeth remembers from her first days of watching anime. When creating her own characters, she bases their clothes and colors on the personality she wants to convey. 

Art is not all about the end product for her, however. It has been an outlet for her. “What I mostly like about being an artist is that I get to let my emotions out, and I can feel relaxed about it. I can be myself and feel free with my drawings.”

Piedmont Middle School art class has helped her in growing her talent. She learned to blend paint and color pencils together, and she was taught how to use gesture drawings for body poses. While she says she is still learning through her mistakes, her time in middle school has helped her define her art and herself.  “I am a shy person when it comes to talking to other people,” she explains. “I do like to ramble about anime shows and characters.”

Elizabeth also enjoys journaling which she says is another way to express her ideas, emotions, and feelings. “I like decorating the page with colorful tape, pictures, markers, and a positive note at the end to help my confidence go up,” she says. 

While she has hopes to one day be an art teacher, animator, or professional artist, Elizabeth is content now to develop her art. When asked what advice she would give to someone who is interested in learning how to draw or paint, she keeps it simple. “I would just tell them to be themselves and just go at it,” she says. “Art can be looked at and described in many different ways.”

Piedmont is proud to have an artist like Elizabeth as part of our student body. 


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