Barbara Lawlor, Nederland. For the past 14 years, the Nederland Lions Club has sponsored the International Peace Poster contest at the Nederland Middle Senior High School. Each year the contest has had a theme that the artists convey through their work, without using words.
This year’s contestants were asked to take a look at the future, to visualize what peace will look like in years to come. The posters are judged on originality, artistic merit and expression of the theme. Art teacher Theresa Redmond guides her middle level art students in the project, working with Lions Club president Fran Bauer.
Local judges were Dave Current, Olivia Greeley and Susan Davis Churches, all of whom had a tough time making a decision, as the quality of the work was superb.
The first-place winner of the contest was Megan Hess, whose poster featured a gnarled tree with branches spreading in all directions containing little snippets of happy life, kids swinging, playing music hanging upside down, reading, flying a kite and holding hands. The branches also held flags from many countries.
Megan will receive $100 and go on to the district level of the contest.
She says, “The tree I drew in this picture is the tree of Peace and Life with all the branches symbolizing everyone and everything going a different way, but it is all interconnected. I have kids playing happily and doing what they love to show happiness and love. Everyone is playing with someone of a different race or nationality, yet they are having fun. Something we could all learn.
Next, I have flags connected to all of the branches showing that the countries or states are all connected. And finally, I have little leaves on the tree to show that we didn’t kill the earth and there are some animals, including doves, to show that the animals made it too.”
The second-place winner was Trinity LeBlanc, whose picture of a whale frolicking in the ocean, being free and happy, instead of being killed and harvested, earned her $50.
Skylar Abookire was the third-place winner of $30. Her grandfather clock, amidst brilliant swirls and streams of colors, represents half of the poster, depicting the present, and half depicting the future, showing that the earth could have clear mountain lakes and peaceful people in the future.
“The Lions Club is proud of you,” Fran Bauer told the students. “Your creativity and hard work are admirable.”