In the wake of Hiroshima, Gen continues to confront one setback after another - the loss of his home, the death of a friend - when a chance encounter gives new direction to his life. An impoverished but talented artist takes Gen under his wing and teaches him to paint. Inspired by the artist's assertion that art has no borders,' Gen vows to become an artist himself, and takes a job as apprentice to a local poster painter. Despite merciless bullying from his boss and the older apprentices, Gen perseveres in the pursuit of his new calling.'
Nakazawa was born in Hiroshima, and was six years old when the city was destroyed by an atomic bomb in 1945. All of his family members who had not been evacuated died in the bombing, except for his mother, and an infant sister who died several weeks after the bombing. Compelled to tell his story in the memory of his family, Keiji Nakazawa is best known for his epic tragic history Barefoot Gen.