Looking back on the past 10 years, the market for 3D artworks was still small. Coupled with a sheer lack of motivation and appreciation for the art among the younger generation, only the passionate few persevered in acquiring the skills.
Among them is 35-year-old artist Nak Nang. Over the past few years, Nang’s 3D drawings have helped shop owners who use them to attract customers.
Hailing from Batheay district’s Pao commune in Kampong Cham province, Nang moved to the capital to pursue his studies and graduated from the Royal University of Fine Arts in 2008.
Catering to shops big and small, Nang is able to draw practically anything his customers desired.
“It doesn’t matter what kind of pictures they wanted. I can draw anything to satisfy my clients. In recent years, 3D drawings have been popular among various shops, cafes and restaurants in Phnom Penh. I’ve drawn for several dozens of them,” he says.
And Nang is upbeat about the growing demands.
“The market for artists’ works is better than it was 10 years ago. Our artworks have been admired and highly appreciated by Cambodian people. Now, they appreciate its value.
“When people appreciate value, they hold high regard for our work, which in turn provides us with a reasonable income. And this spurs artists to be more innovative in producing even more creative artworks.
He says drawing 3D artworks is a painstaking process. “It takes me around three to four days to finish a piece, and a week at the most, provided I fully understand what kind of pictures my customers require,” he says.
On top of his busy career as an artist, Nang also spares time to provide free arts education for orphans at a pagoda in his hometown.
“Every weekend I offer training to orphans at a library in Pao commune’s Chan Muly pagoda. The kids there are passionate and keen to acquire the skill, and I help them to form groups consisting of between 20 and 30 people each,” Nang says.