CEBU

Deep in imagination

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BORN and raised in an artistic and creative household, it seemed that art just came naturally for Cebu-based artist Ken Hensly Racho. With the internet being the gateway to the entire world, Racho shared that it has been his biggest platform in introducing his art to a wider audience, which includes foreign bands, writers and celebrities.

One day, and true enough, Racho’s work on the hit series “Stranger Things” caught the eye of people at Netflix, and the company reached out to Racho, along with other artists around the world, asking if it could feature their works of art featuring the ‘80s-inspired show on Netflix.

“Funny story! I don’t religiously check my email. So when they hit me up, I wasn’t able to get back to them right away. It took me about a week to answer. At first, I thought it was just spam,” he recalled. “Only then did I realize that it was the real deal when they sent me a contract!”

Unlike the others, Racho shared that he was given the chance to pick an episode that he wanted to interpret. He chose Season 1’s eighth episode titled “The Upside Down.”

Having been a fan of “Stranger Things,” he shared that he would create fan art during his spare time and post them on his online portfolio in Behance.com.

When asked about how he felt being selected, he said he felt overwhelmed and pressured.

“I felt a lot of pressure. I knew I had this one chance and I shouldn’t mess it up,” he said. Racho’s work was then officially unveiled on the “Stranger Things” social media pages, gaining both attention and admiration from fans, critics and peers.

As an artist, Racho delves deep into his imagination and draws inspiration from old comics, street designs—just about anything he finds interesting.

“I can be versatile when it comes to my art, and it changes with my mood. But my signature style is surrealistic in nature which, I think, is very fitting when portraying the paranormal, the bizarre and nostalgic familiar; the gritty and otherworldly dimension,” he said.

In the end, whatever the outcome may be, it is a reflection of Racho’s artistic introspection.

“I know it may sound cliché but my art is an expression of my inner thoughts and feelings. I also create art to show my enthusiasm for the things that spark my interest.”

Racho’s artistic expression extends beyond visual art as he’s deeply involved in music as well, playing guitars for rock band Drive Me To Juliet. He is also into fashion as he’s the brains behind Kensuke Creations, a brand that caters to street wear enthusiasts. Add to that, he just released a new clothing brand Hensly Ltd. bearing a cyber punk theme.

Racho is working on a few more artworks for the third season of “Stranger Things.” Two of his works were already uploaded on Netflix’s social media pages, with the last one to come out in a few days.

“Stranger Things” Season 3 will premiere this July 4.


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