Young artists focus on Ilocos heritage sites as art pieces

LAOAG CITY, Jan. 5 (PIA) – Once a month, a group of young painters and sketchers here goes outdoors and create their pieces out of heritage and tourism sites around Ilocos Norte.

Khervin John Gallandez, 23, of Likhang Sining Group of artists in Ilocos Norte, initiated the monthly gathering of local artists here to promote their art and develop local artistry.

“We want to show that as an artist, we don’t just take photos of the places we visit but we make an ‘obra’ out of them which is more significant to us because that way we are able to hone our God-given talent,” Gallandez said.

Gallandez, who started practicing his skills at seven years old, wanted to create a group of active local artists in Ilocos Norte and Ilocos Sur to inspire other youth to continue honing their talent and take pride of it.

“When I was young I was not keen that my ability to draw and sketch is a talent already. I was very shy to share what I can do. It was only during high school that I have learned I can do unique arts that others can’t do,” he said.

Now that he is making a living out of his sketches and paintings, Gallandez wants to make the youth aware that a group of fellow artists exist in the province, helping each other out to achieve their maximum potential.

The group has already painted 10 local destinations including the World Heritage Paoay Church, Laoag City’s Aurora Park and the historical Gilbert Bridge, the nature-rich Karingking Resort in Solsona, Ilocos Norte and even the Crisologo Heritage Walk in Vigan City and even Taoid and Marcos museums.

Likhang Sining has now 15 members in Ilocos Norte and Ilocos Sur particularly students from the University of Northern Philippines in Vigan City.

“I initiate outdoor sessions at my own expense because I value what God has given me… the ability to see the beauty of every ordinary and simple things,” Gallandez said.

“If you have an ability or talent, don’t hide it or don’t be afraid to get out from your box, show to the world you have something that makes you unique,” he added.

Gallandez had his first exhibit in 2014 at the La Tabacalera Hall in Laoag City. Most of his master pieces are expression of deep emotions and faces.

He has now his mini kiosk where he accepts commissioned self-portraits, caricature, paintings, and calligraphy works.

Their group’s paintings and sketches of heritage and tourism sites were kept by the artists to realize his passion in art. Some were posted on social media to promote tourism.

“I want to continue inspiring young artists to embrace their passion and never stop believing in themselves,” Gallandez said. (Cherry Joy D. Garma/PIA1-Ilocos Norte)