Head Above Water
2020, High School, Art
My artwork explores the dangers and effects of oil pollution and symbolizes the human race attempting to keep its head above the water in the damaged environment created by its own hands. If we don’t change, the planet will suffer along with us. I was saddened by stories of oil that plagued the ocean and the life in and near it, and inspired by stories of those who chose to help. This digital artwork exhibits how this particular human error harms more than just water. Oil pollution poses a threat to humans as well as everything in and around the area of the spill. Oil seeping into the environment kills plants, animals, and coral, affects human health, disturbs pH levels, and pollutes the air and water. In this piece, I included various fish, types of coral, and other marine life—all affected by oil spills. I kept the marine life imagery soft, vibrant and colorful to represent the vivid life that exists in the ocean. The threatening oil spill, on the other hand, was created by drawing harsh lines and swirls filled in with dark color. This creates a distinction between the beauty of the environment and what can and will happen if we allow our man-made mistakes to further plague the Earth. The girl centered in the swirling sea holds her head just above the water, hopeful and desperate for change. If we hold our breath and do nothing about the issue at hand, we will drown.