“As an artist, I would someday want to tell my stories fully through the art that I make,” said Sai (@Pandesaii on Instagram), a 21-year-old digital artist and graduate of AB Animation from De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde.
The freelance storybook illustrator was one of two Filipino artists (the other being Jethro Ian) Netflix tapped for its Pride Month celebration. They were asked to draw their favorite LGBTQIA+ characters from the streaming platform’s extensive library.
They had a lot to choose from, given Netflix’s commitment to diversity, inclusion and representation.
“Representation is really important, especially for young LGBTQIA+ kids. Seeing ourselves being represented authentically helps a lot when we’re trying to learn to accept ourselves,” Sai said.
Sai, who enjoys using her iPad and Procreate for digital art, chose to make portraits of Robin Buckley (played by Maya Hawke) from “Stranger Things” Season 3; Ola Nyman (Patricia Allison) from “Sex Education”; Ellie Chu (Leah Lewis) and Aster Flores (Alexxis Lemire) from the beautiful Alice Wu film “The Half of It”; Mae Martin from “Feel Good”; and Antoni Porowski, Bobby Berk, Karamo Brown, Jonathan Van Ness and Tan France from “Queer Eye.”
Here are her portraits, and what she has to say about the characters.