War concerns me because although it is declared by countries, it affects countless individuals, from soldiers to civilians, including mothers and daughters and sons. Wars take place in faraway places such as Afghanistan, Iraq, or Syria, and our lives seems little influenced. This painting serves as a reminder that on the battlefield, there are other lives to whom war is very real; they must either be the ones to carry guns and drop bombs, or have their homes and families wrecked. In the background, I painted drones dropping bombs, representing the mass destruction. I also drew soldiers marching on a hill and a man holding a gun. This shows that despite being conflicts between countries, war forces innocent people to pull the trigger to kill each other. I gave the background a red and orange watercolor wash that steadily descends to black to reflect the violence and terror of war. The background is done in a more realistic style to reveal that the horrors of war are a daily reality to some. In the foreground, the snow globe symbolizes the fragility of peace. The blue and green tones inside the snow globe and the two children symbolize peace and serenity, which stands in contrast to the violence and bloodshed outside of the globe. The foreground is drawn less realistically, to illustrate that peace is but a dream to the adults and children living in war zones.
BIO: My name is Qianyue Xu, and I am a junior at Jones College Prep in Chicago, Illinois. I loved drawing and painting as a child. I have taken numerous sketch and acrylic classes since fourth grade. The most recent classes I took were Oil Painting and Water Based Painting at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. As a child growing up with parents constantly on the move, I spent my childhood in Australia, and my middle school years in China. I always have friends in other parts of the world, whose lives are just as real as mine. We share the same kinds of joys, sadness, or horrors of any sort of disasters. My experiences have shaped my perspective as an artist to see others, the world, and myself: we are all the same and deserve the same peace and happiness.