TACLOBAN CITY – Another young Samareño has proven that everything is possible with art.
Twenty-one-year-old Joneil Severino from Gandara, Samar, despite the lack of art materials, makes portraits out of matches and soot from a cooking pan.
The second-year Bachelor of Elementary Education student from Northwest Samar State University-San Jorge Campus started making art pieces when his friend celebrated her birthday in 2016.
“I was about to give her something to make her happy so I tried making her portrait. Many people liked it so I was inspired to do more,” he recalled.
He was able to personally hand over his portrait of Vice President Leni Robredo during one of her visits to Samar.
His eagerness to help his family with their daily needs amidst the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic inspired him to innovate and use his talent by accepting commissioned portraits to support his education.
“I ran out of materials so I thought of using matches and charcoal from our cooking pan to save money. I want to show to my fellow youth that poverty is not a hindrance in achieving one’s dreams,” he shared.
He used 1,500 matchsticks in making the portrait of Samar Governor Michael Tan.
“I was thinking about creative art form style, which will make sense and a symbolism of ‘Light and Hope.’ I just wanted to share my new art style with Governor Michael Tan for making us feel worthy and comfortable by recognizing our talents and gifts.”
He added that the fire symbolizes a burning desire, a light to illuminate darkness, and a spark to keep the fire burning.
Joneil is the third among four siblings. He admits that it is challenging to work and provide for his family since his mother is a plain housewife and his father hardly lands a job as a construction worker because of the pandemic.
“I feel for my parents who are trying their best to feed us and send us to school despite this crisis. This is the only way I thought that I would be able to help them,” he said.