By Mariel Abanes
“My father introduced me to drawing with just a pen and single sheet of bond paper that mom brought from the office,” Thomasian artist Louis Espinosa begins his story. As a kid, he tuned in to our favorite childhood shows like Pokemon and marveled at the works of Mars Ravelo like Darna—which, he says, were the media that opened his eyes to the arts.
His passion further reveled in his pre-high school days. Sketching anime characters has become his favorite pastime, and Louis went from finishing unrealistic drawings back then to stepping his toes in art school fast forward to present. Now three years into college and meddling with different forms of art, he discovered his signature style that gained the attention of art enthusiasts.
Just recently, he won the People’s Choice Award in the 32nd Pinoy Pride Visual Arts Competition last March for his piece called ‘Kulturang Dalisay.’ He is currently a semifinalist for the Metrobank Art and Design Excellence competition for his artwork titled ‘Tanggap ka namin, Anak.’ The oil on canvas piece will be exhibited this September for the body’s awarding ceremonies. His favorite work to date, it depicts acceptance of parents to their children who are members of the LGBTQIA community—a noteworthy theme especially relevant in today’s generation.
The Fine Arts student continues to steadily grow his portfolio. Describing his style as, “more on realism and an offspring of inspiration from other artists,” his knack for details and fine hand techniques give birth to a collection of compelling pictures. One of the geniuses he looks up to is William Bouguereau, who is known for creating paintings with a luminous glow in the skin. The 20-year-old also does a lot of research—and we mean a lot—to stimulate his creative juices. “I spend hours researching about artists and their artistic backgrounds,” Louis says.
“Whenever I feel drained or burnt out, I watch art vlogs of artists like Kelogsloops, Happydartist, Lena Danya and Daria Callie,” he adds. The flare or kick of inspiration and motivation he gets from keeping his icons on the tabs pushes him to paint when he's in a slump.
Just like any up-and-comers, Louis sets his eyes on staging his solo exhibit and hopefully, to participate in shows alongside the finest artists in the country. But the biggest dream is to have his painting hung up on Louvre or the National Gallery of London.
But his goal isn’t only for his talent to be recognized by the world. One day, he sees himself building a studio open for aspiring artists who cannot afford to enroll in art schools. “I want you all to expect that I will share my skills to those people who doesn’t have enough access to art tutorials,” he vows. After all, he considers sharing his artistic knowledge as his main source of strength.
“Louis is a happy-go-lucky kid, with a lot of dreams to achieve,” he bares. While he traverses the road towards all his aspirations, he takes it from one of his favorite artists, Lady Gaga, at times when the world seem to crumble and conspire against you: “You just need one to believe in you.”
Watch Louis star in our 18th anniversary campaign #ChalkGen18 as part of this year's Chalk Bright Young Manila:
ALSO READ: #ChalkGen18: Meet The 18 Individuals Of This Year's Chalk Bright Young Manila
Photographed by Stephen Capuchino
Art Direction by Mikka Caronan
Styled by Madel Asuncion
Grooming by Andi Sapina of Makeup Design Academy
Hair by Jennifer Pascual of Triple Luck Brow and Nail Salon
Clothes by Forever 21