WILLIAMSON COUNTY, Tenn. - There are a lot of creative people in Middle Tennessee, some accomplished in music, some in other areas.
In School Patrol, we meet a young Williamson County man whose love of the arts has brought him national recognition.
In this Franklin High School art class, Sam Shapiro is focused on a project.
"I'm basically just doing like anatomy drawings," said Sam.
Getting his drawing of the skull just right takes a little more concentration than his usual art work. That's because his usual art pieces, are more organic.
"Sam is an interesting student. He kind of beats to his own drum. Kind of creates these interesting organic creatures that he comes up with out of his imagination. You know he doesn't want to stick with the inside the box assignments," said Laura Saylor, who has been instructing Sam for the past three years.
Every year, she submits her students artwork to various competitions. This time, her persistence paid off big.
Sam won a National medal in the Scholastic Art and Writing 2011 Competition. It was a first for Franklin High.
"It's kind of like this really beautiful happy family, and then having these two kind of like, yeah, the two blue creatures that are obviously really unattractive, one of them has a mask on, so they're hiding him kind of," said Sam.
"It's a lot about mixing the macabre with the mundane," Sam added.
But not all of Sam's work is so unusual. Creating art since kindergarten, Sam finds it is best when he doesn't follow the rules.
"I think like spontaneous is like a good thing to have in art. As far as applying a meaning to it, that usually comes later. And I think it's kind of arbitrary to apply a meaning to it, when I don't think it needs one," Sam told NewsChannel 5.
Although Sam has his own way of doing things, Ms. Saylor said she's there for guidance.
"I think it's still very important for me as a teacher, helping them grow on this path to still give them suggestions and like I said, open their eyes to some new possibilities they may not have seen being 17 and 18-years-old," said Saylor.
"It's like a transcendental experience, like you don't even feel like you exist You're so connected into it," Sam added.
Sam's award winning artwork will be on display at the World Financial Center in New York City.