Perceptions Over Reality
8/17, 14 X 23"
Oil on Masonite

This painting was my attempt at demonstrating how the media instills fear into our perceptions of a place, making us afraid to travel beyond our home borders.

In contrast to the dangerous news headlines, the events taking place in this picture are pleasantly ordinary. We are merely watching a tourist have a transaction with a local. This concept applies to real life. The world is not nearly as dangerous as we are led to believe. Whenever I am about to travel to another country, and I tell people about my upcoming trip, I am always told, "Be safe". Many people tell me I am brave. Truth be told, while I am nervous upon entering a new big city, I discover that the fear is unfounded once I begin walking around town.

I'm not saying there aren't dangerous places in the world. Of course there are. Just use your common sense, be respectful to the locals, and don't walk down dark alleys at night by yourself. After visiting nearly 40 countries, I've never been a victim of a crime. Knock on wood. I've met countless travelers from all around the world, and none of their travel tales have sounded like the dangerous situations that we hear on the news. If there's one thing I've learned on my travels, it is that a huge percent of the world is made up of good people.

At the end of the day, we shouldn't let fear and freak news headlines dictate our decisions in life. My suggestion is to go out there and travel!


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Arthur Erberber. Unauthorized
reproduction prohibited.
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