What about Syria? – Mariana Leite

Why did you pick this picture?

the reason why I picked this picture is because I want the message to pass on many people from over the world. I want people to feel touched with the drawing and stop for a minute to think about the tragedy that’s going on in Syria, and even though everybody knows about it, sometimes it feels like nobody is really paying attention to it. So making this drawing was really special to me, because I felt like I was actually paying attention to what’s happening out there and paying some tribute to the lives that were and are lost everyday in Syria, and to the victims there who manage to survive but are suffering every second of their lives.

Where did the idea come from?

The idea actually came when I started following an instagram account called @syriacharity. I don’t think anyone can see some of the images without feeling terrible about how stuff like that is happening right “before our eyes” and we can’t do anything about it. The people who really could, the people with power to do it, won’t. Fortunately there are some who are helping the victims, right there with them showing them some love and giving them a little bit of peace in the middle of the horrible war. And those people deserve a lot of respect, because not everybody could do what they do. You need courage and a big heart, and there are not many people who have that.

What does this art mean to you?

This art means a lot to me because as I mentioned before, it’s about opening your eyes and your heart to Syria. Open them and you’ll see the tragedy and the horror those people go through everyday, and that they deserve being helped and find some peace. Normally while I draw something that means something to me, I like listening to some music that has something to do with what I’m drawing, and in this case the song I loved the most was Man in the Mirror by Michael Jackson. The lyrics are just beautiful and powerful so it really boosted my inspiration on this art.

What can you tell us about yourself?

I’m a 20 year old Portuguese girl living in France but born in England! Well, both my mum and dad are Portuguese and after having their first daughter (my older sister) they emigrated to England where they had me and my younger sister. After 10 years living there, we moved back to Portugal but unfortunately things didn’t go so well after some years and that’s where we moved all together to France looking for a better life. Since I was very little, I always loved drawing. I think my oldest memory making art is me drawing mermaids with my best friend (back then) at our nursery school, when I was about 5 or 6 years old. Throughout the years I always practiced quite a lot, sometimes by myself, sometimes with my big sister who is also into art, or some friends, but to be really honest, there where times when I just completely stopped drawing for months and then after some time, I would just start again. Drawing has always just been a hobby for me And only last year I really decided to start selling my drawings and that’s when I made my instagram account with the big support of my family and my loving boyfriend who always wanted me to show my work and “talent” to the world. Nowadays I have some commissions here and there and sometimes I still just draw for fun, and just for myself. I feel like my drawings could actually take me somewhere and it would be a dream come true to have my art in a gallery some day, and seeing my work being Appreciated by other great and talented artists.

What more can you tell us about your art?

I don’t know if my art says much about me, I think it depends on what I’m drawing. I’m not really into drawing my emotions, or showing so much about how I feel through them. I’m more into drawing what makes me happy. When I feel very sad, I actually don’t like to draw because I’ll always look at that artwork as something negative and that’s everything I don’t want. I like to feel comfortable and happy, for as long as I can, and remember all the good things I have in my life and how precious And fragile they are. Because you never know what tomorrow brings so just try to be your best always. That’s what I try to do. Drawing is still a hobby for me and I genuinely enjoy seeing how much I am evolving everyday. With time I’ll discover my style and maybe have my artworks in a gallery one day. For now I just draw whatever I feel like drawing and try to pass on nice messages. I like experimenting different materials like spray paint, acrylics, just normal pencil black and white (which is what I’m better at, in my opinion), watercolours, gouache, etc. It’s fun to try them all. And that’s what I like about art. You can just draw whatever you want, and if it makes you feel good and is actually good for you, that’s perfect.

To see more of Mariana’s artwork please follow the link below to see their instagram page

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