A first attempt won first place for a Carthage High School student.

A first attempt won first place for a Carthage High School student.

CHS senior Rachel Haas made her first attempt at three-dimensional book / paper art in November, and her efforts won her first place in Pittsburg State University's High School Art Day.

“I do try,” she said with a modest smile. “Art means everything. Now that I've discovered that I'm really good at something – I've been mediocre in so many things, and now I just love the idea of creating something that's mine.”

Art allows Haas to keep her humble trait.

“With this I can work really hard on something and put it on display and show it off – not me,” she said, “and I like that.”

Haas said she hopes art will lead her into a bright future.

“I'd like to study graphic design in advertising at an art school in some big city like St. Louis,” she said. “Then I'd like to go back to get a dual major in sculpture and anthropology … The way people can not just look at it, but be a part of it is, I think, cool.”

The only family tie to the arts department Haas mentioned was her grandmother, who was a high school theater teacher. Initially, Haas' interest was in theater until she enrolled in an introduction to art class. Now, art is the best part of the day.

“Whatever I'm working on at the time is my favorite,” Haas said, laughing.

Rachel is the daughter of Matt and Angie Haas, of Carthage. They also have one son, Taylor, who is attending Missouri Southern State University.