Two years ago, Iz Lacson dreamt of forming a group where artists could freely share their works without fear of artistic hierarchy. Inviting four of his colleagues, they formed a group where this dream could become a reality. The group believed that every artist, amateur or adept, was gifted with their own style that they should be proud of. These five friends wanted to fill these artists with the passion to continue doing what makes them happy and remind them of the reason they started drawing in the first place. Aiming to inspire and motivate, while gently reminding people that art is not a competition, they pioneered art trading events and formed what we know today as Art Trade MNL.
Digital Art Trade
Digital Art Trade, one of the group’s organized events, was held last September 26 at Iago’s Grill, BF Homes, Panañaque. It attracted different artists, letting them bond and share their experiences while trading personal artworks with each other. Not only was it a social gathering of talented illustrators, but it also included games, raffles, activities, freebies, and talks. Art Trade MNL was able to invite four established artists, namely, Kookie Santos of Serious Studio, Nollzz Li of Piod Paper Crew, Nelz Yumul of WeeWillDoodle, and Vincent Quilop. Each artist was a professional of a different medium, and talked about their achievements and struggles in the art industry, giving first hand advice on how to further improve.
Aside from tips for refining one’s style, these professionals also imparted to the audience reminders on how to treat and view not only their own artworks, but also those of other artists. They showed how constant practice, endurance, and discipline could go a long way, and reminded all those present to stay humble and to never forget their worth. Lastly, they also imparted how it was not in comparing your work with others that one begins to improve, but in making mistakes and learning from them.
Alive and kicking
A lot may say that the art industry is a dying business with no income and future, but what they fail to see is that it is actually growing each and every day. Everything around us nowadays, from innovative architectural designs to vintage-styled calligraphy work, is art. Every day, we wake up to numerous designs and patterns that help improve our life by either simplifying it or letting us live to the fullest. Art has been subtlety integrated into our lives without most of us noticing it, which is why it’s only right that we show our support and appreciation to those who make it their life dream to give us these incredible experiences.
All in all, the event left everyone feeling refreshed and inspired, ready to make some more art to show the world just what they can do. Everyone left with huge smiles on their faces, bags overflowing with goodies and printed works of fellow artists, phones updated with contacts, and their notebooks filled with portfolio websites just waiting to be seen by someone new. With a heightened morale accompanied by a sense of belongingness and camaraderie, Digital Art Trade left every artist in attendance wanting more and anticipating what Art Trade MNL has in store.
“Art is a gift that [needs] to be shared.”
– Nollzz Li, founder of Piod Paper Crew