Mommies, are you honing your child’s skills during this pandemic? Read about Nadia Lacson, a self-taught 5-year old artist who’s already getting commissions for painting!
What can you read in this article?
Painting – from a form of distraction to a form of self-expression
How the artist’s style evolved
How Nadia Lacson, a five-year old artist got her first commissions for painting
We try to get our children preoccupied at home during this pandemic to help them cope, to keep them entertained and more often, to get some work done ourselves.
Some moms would enroll their kids in online classes like martial arts or ballet, some would just allow their kids to build forts and play. One mom gave her 5-year-old daughter paper and some paint, and she turned out to be such an extraordinary artist.
Preschooler Nadia Lacson is a self-taught painter who is already getting commissions for painting. Awesome, right? How did it happen? We asked Nadia’s mom, Tippi Chavez-Lacson to tell us more about how they discovered Nadia’s gift.
Image courtesy of Tippi Chavez-Lacson
From distraction to self-expression
Like most kids, Nadia was introduced to painting by her parents as a way to keep herself busy while mom and dad were working at home.
During the start of the pandemic, Mommy Tippi, a lawyer, started working from home. Because she needed some peace and quiet to conduct her meetings and to review important documents, she started looking for ways to keep Nadia distracted while she and her husband, Nico, were working.
“We were just at home, and Nadia really wanted to be with us all the time. She thought it would be play time every day with us. But as much as we want to give her attention, it’s really difficult when you’re working at the same time,” shared Mommy Tippi.
At first, they gave her toys to keep her distracted. Then when that didn’t last, they tried giving her art materials. Mommy Tippi started giving Nadia paper and some crayons, where she would just draw random lines. Then when she moved on to giving her paint, Mommy Tippy noticed that it was something her daughter was really hooked in.
“I think painting was the one activity that really sustained her attention for a long time. I can work straight for one hour na she wouldn’t want to get my attention,” she said.
How Nadia’s style evolved
So they just let Nadia immerse herself in the activity. She started like any regular kid, drawing random lines on a piece of paper. However, after some time, the couple was so surprised with what their daughter came up with on her own.
“It started like a normal 4-year old’s work, you know, random lines. Then she graduated to color blocking with water color, then I had acrylic paints lying around so she used that too.
She started mixing poster paint, layering the poster paint with water color, then she discovered this marbling thing with it, where the colors would somehow marble,” shared Mommy Tippi.
She was so amazed at how Nadia was able to come up with her own style all by herself.
“I think I saw her discover this new style from the rudimentary random lines to color blocking and then it progressed to this marbling thing.” she shared.
One of Nadia Lacson’s early works | Image courtesy of Tippi Chavez-Lacson
The proud mom also witnessed how her daughter suddenly became so particular with the colors she uses in her artwork, compared to how a usual child would go about it.
“She just suddenly became so particular na with the colors. I used to think it was random, like how kids usually do it. But then when she puts it all together, I’m very amazed at how they all come together and form this whole cohesive artwork.”
Nadia obviously has a gift for the visual arts. So we asked Mommy Tippi if her daughter had an inspiration or if there was any other artist in the family whose work she was exposed to. But according to Mommy Tippi, while she had relatives who are painters, Nadia has not been exposed to their art beforehand.
“The style is completely her own,” she said. “You know when they say that kids are natural artists? I think she’s the perfect example of that.”
However, like any supportive parent, she wanted to know how she can further help her daughter hone her craft. While she was sad that she couldn’t take her to museums now to expose her to different forms of art, she enrolled Nadia in art lessons and researched more about her style.
“I don’t know anything about visual art, so I feel very nervous on how I can properly hone her in her interest. So I did some research on her style.
That’s one sad thing na I can’t bring her to museums to expose her to other forms of arts or inspire her. But we do watch YouTube videos on techniques. I also enrolled her in Likhang Bata at the start of the pandemic, for art class and for proper technique.”
Painting with a purpose
One of Nadia Lacson’s paintings inspired by Siargao | Image courtesy of Tippi Chavez-Lacson
Aside from honing their child’s interest, painting also became a way for Tippy and Nico to teach Nadia about social awareness. It all came together when the family decided to take a quick vacation to the island of Siargao.
After their trip, Mommy Tippi asked Nadia to make some art inspired by photos Daddy Nico took while they were in Siargao. Then they showed it to their friends and asked the people who liked Nadia’s paintings to donate a small amount to a non-government organization (NGO) in the province.
“We decided to do it that way rather than charge so we can also teach Nadia some form of social awareness, and using her talent to help other people,” shared Mommy Tippy.
The particular NGO they chose had a project that was related to another one of Nadia’s favorites – books. The proceeds of Nadia’s paintings will go to building a children’s library in Siargao.
After they posted it on their social media accounts, more people showed interest in Nadia’s work and commissioned her for paintings.
So while painting is not really part of her daily routine (“She just paints when she’s in the mood,” Mommy Tippy tells us), Mommy Tippi reminds Nadia of her obligations to people who asked for her painting.
Support from her parents
When asked if she thinks Nadia will have a career in the arts someday, Mommy Tippy maintains that it’s all up to the child to make that decision and they will just be there for support.
“In terms of foreseeing what her future career will be, I really leave that up to her to decide. We’re just here to hone her and to guide her.”
However, she thinks that painting or art has definitely helped Nadia cope and discover herself more this pandemic. “It helped her cope, it kept her busy and it gave her an outlet to express herself,” shared Mommy Tippy.
We really admired how she and Daddy Nico discovered and supported Nadia’s gift without any pressure, so we also asked Mommy Tippy for some tips she can give to parents with kids who needed to be kept busy during the pandemic. And here’s what she said:
“Allow them to make a mess. It’s evidence of learning and experiencing something new. Also, when they make a mess, teach them to clean up after themselves (which Nadia already does)!”
We’ll take your word for it, Mommy Tippy. Keep painting, Nadia!
Nadia Lacson and her proud parents | Image courtesy of Tippi Chavez-Lacson