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President Ho Chi Minh shown through illustrations

by Thai Tan - Thanh Duy/VTV19 May 2016 Last updated at 15:13 PM

Artist Le Lam and his works (Photo: Thanh Hang/Cong An Nhan Dan)
Artist Le Lam and his works (Photo: Thanh Hang/Cong An Nhan Dan)

VTV.vn - The image of President Ho Chi Minh has been deeply ingrained in the minds of every Vietnamese people. Yet it isn’t necessarily easy to portray the man, let alone in books that illustrate his life.

Artist Le Lam was chosen to illustrate Son Tung’s picture book From Sen Village. 25 water colours in the book, hand-painted by Artist Le Lam himself, have vividly recreated the images of President Ho Chi Minh from early childhood to the day he embarked on his journey to seek ways to liberate the nation.

"What I found the most difficult when illustrating From Sen Village was that everything was entirely real. 100% real. Therefore, I had to somehow find ways to make my illustrations feel real", artist Le Lam said.

In order to illustrate the simple daily lives of villagers in central Vietnam in the most authentic way possible, Artist Lê Lam decided to travel to every place mentioned in From Sen Village before even putting pen to paper.

"I went to Nghe An, then to Hue. I went to the Imperial Palace. I went to the place where Uncle Ho along with his father and brother lived in Hue. Having seen them, they were brought to life. And at that moment, I could draw", artist Le Lam added.

Artist Van Tho was also an illustrator for poet To Huu's Follow Uncle poetry collection. He painted 12 lacquer paintings, depicting different stages of President Ho Chi Minh’s revolutionary activities throughout his life. When illustrating this famous poetry book, the most difficult thing that artist Van Tho encountered was the large number of topics mentioned in the poems, which means the same amount of detailed researching.

"These were difficult topics, for example, the one about Uncle Ho paying homage to Lenin in Russia. I had to do thorough research on Russia, what clothes Russians often wore to funerals; what kinds of sentiment they expressed at that time, and even how our Uncle Ho would have stood among the crowd. That’s what I had to recreate", artist Van Tho said.

Illustrating literature works about Ho Chi Minh has always been a challenge for every artist. However, with love and an admiration for the great leader, they are still endeavouring, finding their own ways to bring the liveliest and most authentic illustrations of President Ho Chi Minh to readers.

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