Last Saturday, we left Pampanga with so much words of wisdom and encouragement from Erwin Dayrit. Probably just the message I needed.
Erwin or ‘Weng’ to this family is a 37-year old ballpen artist. I met him at the SM Stationery Art Fest while he was doing a demo with Dong-A Philippines.
I was stunned by his attention to detail. This drawing of Apo Whang Od–one of the artist he admires–was made with nothing but ballpens. On the dove drawing below, I initially thought he painted the black part of the illustration board white so he can draw on it. Apparently, he covered it with black ink. *OMG*
I admired Erwin’s patience. Each artwork can take a week or two (or more) depending on the scale!
Anne went with me to Pampanga and as she pointed out, ballpen art is something that cannot be erased. Erwin says he enjoys the challenge.
He shares there was a time in his life when he would sulk in one corner. But eventually, he realized his physical state is his only challenge: he actually has very supportive family, friends and classmates. To boot, he has an upcoming exhibit at the Fernando Sena Buenas Artes Art Facility this September and his dad already made him a pulley mechanism so he can paint on his canvas. Now that’s family teamwork! 🙂
Just by filming Erwin, you can sense that there is no air of self-consciousness or second guessing from this person. Most of the stuff we shot were done in one take. We were joking that we were in stalker mode as we moved around his desk and watched him work through the lens.
We were also blessed with gorgeous light that day. I always shoot stuff in my home so seeing the trees play with the sun was a treat while we waited for Erwin to give ration water to pet roosters.
Erwin loves doing portraits and he shares that he particularly enjoys drawing people’s eyes as they speak volumes about how they feel. In the video, you will be able to spot a piece he made: a portrait of a rebel with a look of sadness and fierceness–a combo I didn’t thought possible. I didn’t realize how much can be communicated in such a small space. *Also laughing deep inside as soon as I recall that I draw people with eyes closed–with only two lines. Gotta work on that soon. Haha.*
I initially started this personal project of visiting artists as an attempt to document the current art scene. I always thought it would be awesome if I can look back on the photos & videos x years from now and do a second interview *hopefully*. Here’s a quick look at art shops, events & artist’s spaces. ICYMI:
Dan Matutina‘s Plus 63 Studio
Art in the Park 2017
Hey Kessy Washi Studio
The Art of Kenny Tai
Art Bar BGC
Fully Booked GB5
Going back, Erwin shares that his participation in the online art movement called Guhit Pinas helped him greatly. It’s where people generously shared tips and it’s also where members started noticing his posts. Throughout his career, Erwin has also received multiple awards from the City of San Fernando Pampanga itself, Guhit Pinas and the like. He has also been interviewed multiple times by local TV stations.
I actually didn’t think that this interview was going to be possible but I just knew I wanted to know more about Erwin’s story the day I met him. Thank you to Jason Montecalvo for your help! 🙂 I guess the real bonus of this personal project is the off-cam bonding over lemonade & bread! Thank you so so much Erwin for your generosity! Thanks too to your family for sharing with us your time, wisdom & space! 🙂
May you inspire more people!
The Googly Family 🙂
P.S. Get to know more about Erwin Dayrit’s art here:
Facebook: Erwin V. Dayrit
For commissions, you may contact Erwin on his personal Facebook page.
Watch out for announcements about his upcoming exhibit this September!
That photo of him smiling is such a gem! I showed everyone at home some of the BTS snaps I took and they wouldn’t believe me when I told them Erwin makes art using ballpens we use in school and at the office.