In what can be described as a heartfelt homecoming, Ronaldo “Ronnie” G. del Carmen, Bachelor of Fine Arts major in Advertising Arts alumnus – Batch 1985, returned to the University of Santo Tomas for an encounter with the University administrators, faculty members and the present-day College of Fine Arts and Design students.
Del Carmen had a taste of what it feels like to be a Thomasian nowadays, as he began his homecoming by walking through the historic Arch of the Centuries, an act reminiscent of last Wednesday’s (August 6, 2015) Thomasian Welcome Walk. He gamely posed for photographs in front of the Arch and upon reaching the statue of Archbishop Miguel de Benavides, he exclaimed: “We used to draw him a lot during our time!”In his courtesy call to the University Vice-Rector, Fr. Richard G. Ang, O.P., Del Carmen paid tribute to the University, saying that everything began for him in UST.He then had the chance to speak in front of a jam-packed crowd in the Beato Angelico Audio-Visual Room, which was bursting at the seams with students, faculty members and administrators who all came to witness one of Fine Arts’ proudest sons come home.
Relating to his most recent movie, “Inside Out,” del Carmen said he was “Joy” when he finally got in the old College of Architecture and Fine Arts to begin studying art. Del Carmen’s good friend, fellow Thomasian Ruben Nepales, Jr., recounted how Ronnie had to overcome poverty just to finish his studies. This del Carmen did, graduating at the age of 25.
Ever true to his humble beginnings, del Carmen stressed to the students that while technology for art is there, they should not forget that everything begins with what every first grader knows: a pencil and a paper. He urged them to cultivate creativity, make mistakes and learn from them, and explore their potentials.
Del Carmen also told them that art is storytelling, and that animation and film-making are fields that truly require a great storyteller. While he said that structure and templates are provided, great storytelling happens when it comes from the heart—when emotions of the narrator touch the emotions of the listener. This, he said, is the inspiration behind “Inside Out,” the emotions that people go through and how these can help one relate with another.
The encounter ended in a truly CAFA/CFAD way, with Ronnie gamely drawing his favorite character, “Sadness,” on a sketch pad. An advertising senior, Ava Aboy, gave del Carmen a portrait of the animator, which Ronnie happily received. Del Carmen likewise received a statuette of Beato Angelico, the Angelic Artist, a perpetual reminder that art is a gift from God, offered to God in the service of the nation, the Church and the world, according to Fr. Edgardo D. Alaurin, O.P., CFAD Regent.“Inside Out” by Disney-Pixar will be shown in Philippine theaters on August 19, 2015.