Wish You Were Here (Now You Can Be)

Hawai‘i-based Sergio Garzon draws his way into our hearts and onto your wall with his $5 anything-you-wish drawing project.

Text and images by Bianca Sewake

For just $5, artist Sergio Garzón, who lives in Honolulu, will draw anything with swiftness and accuracy. So far, Garzón has hiked through backyards of expensive houses at Diamond Head, as requested by one client, to draw a hidden spot that famous graffiti artists tagged. He has searched the island looking for one specific person to draw, because another client wanted to see how the person was doing. He’s gone around sketching different monuments, events, and landscapes. “I ask people to send me to places and sometimes I have to find people,” he says. “It’s like detective work, and at the same time it’s artist work, because I said I’ll find anybody and draw anything. Just send me the GPS coordinates and I’ll go there.”

It’s all part of a new project he launched on fiverr, which makes his artwork accessible to anyone around the world. It’s just one of many projects Garzón does as a way to give himself fun assignments—not surprising for this upbeat and enthusiastic artist who likes to dabble in different mediums.

Garzon lives at the Chinatown Artist Lofts in downtown Honolulu as part of an artist residency program, and this is where most of his magic happens. Well-used watercolor palettes, pens, pencils, and nearly finished drawings are scattered on different makeshift work tables. What could be considered his living room is occupied by his latest woodworking project, of a dolphin. His walls are covered with taped-up inspirations and art pieces, and his main room holds a third of his 58-foot-long woodprint block of a squid. Even his bedroom is being slowly overtaken by his art, along with materials for his most recent hobby, building ship models in old Carlos Rossi wine bottles. He calls his scatter-brained ways a “condition,” but this condition allows him to not only produce artwork, but also to share it. When he’s not sketching, he works at The Arts at Mark’s Garage; teaches a sketchbook class; and is a male figure model for figure-drawing classes.

For an artist like Garzón, who has sold artwork for twenty, fifty, hundreds or even thousands of dollars, his $5 offer is generous. “You have to be able to make [your art] available for people—for everyone—not just the super rich. I just want to share,” he says. It’s an offer he’ll keep around for a long time.

So whether you are here now or a trip to Hawai‘i is not even in the near future, it’s possible to get a unique and special handmade gift to give away or keep. Just hit up Garzon’s fiverrr page and request a sketch of the sun setting over the Pacific Ocean as surfers catch one last wave. Or, for a more romantic offering, ask Garzón to draw you and your partner basking in the sun at Lanikai Beach, the Mokulua Islands on the horizon. It will be as if you were here.

Lei Hawaii - Sergio Garzon Sketch Project