Visual artist, actor, fashion designer, entrepreneur, philanthropist... middle school student? This is Santana Draper.
In the fall of 2012, the world was introduced to then 10 year old Santana Draper's art inspired apparel collection simply named paper toy®. Originally debuting through such sites as Fab.com and Zulily.com,Paper Toy® designs are now available on Amazon.com and have their own boutique online here at http://www.PaperToyClothing.com.
He often gets asked about the name of his company "paper toy":"When I was really young, I was discovering my love of art. I also realized how expensive the toys my Dad was buying for me, so I began sketching action figures and cutting them out of paper. I'd call them 'My Paper Toy'. It was a natural progression to naming my company 'paper toy'. It was also apparent to me, even as a little kid, that other kids didn't always have what they needed, so we donate some of the money from the t-shirts to Kids' Meals in Houston."
Santana's has blazed trails when he has been chosen to exhibit his work at several prestigious festivals:
• Houston's largest fine arts festival, The Bayou City Arts Festival
• South by Southwest (SXSW) Gaming Expo
• Houston's largest festival, The International Festival AKA "ifest"
• The largest Sneaker Summit, H-town Sneaker Summit
• ESPN's inaugural X Games in Austin
He has also garnered many admirers, including: Elvis Duran's National Syndicated Radio Show; recording artist Austin Mahone; recording artist Miguel; Songwriter Ed Sheeran; socialite Karrache Tran; ABC Executive VP Vickie Dummer; French house music producer David Guetta; and, other celebs in attendance for 2013 Billboard Music Awards, MTV's VMAs and the BET Awards.
Additionally, Santana is an accomplished actor, with appearances in:
• Director Quentin Tarantino's blockbuster, Django Unchained;
• HBO's highly acclaimed Boardwalk Empire;
• Eagerly anticipated Dawn of the Planet of the Apes; and,
• Lorraine Hansberry's A Raisin in the Sun in the featured role of Travis Younger.
Let's not forget--Santana is still only 12 and a student! He studies at Harmony School of Ingenuity and is an active member of his church.