24-year-old artist Lan Gabriel Espoir professionally known as Lanart21 believes that dreams are only invalid if they’re quashed or silenced. Through his talent and inventive mind, the youngster anticipates taking the Rwandan movie industry to the next level by crafting 3D animation movies that will compete on the international market like Disney movies. The artist who holds a number of titles such as graphics designer, digital artist, movie production assistant, tattoo artist, website designer, and 2D animator, recalls falling in love with filmmaking in September 2021, when his friend connected him to an American movie director and writer, Matthew Leutwyler. “We worked on a movie titled ‘Fight Like A Girl’, a 2023 film about a young Congolese woman forced to work in an illegal mineral mine, who escaped her abductors and found a new profession as a professional boxer,” Espoir stresses. He was the production assistant for this movie which was shot in Congo. While on set, he understood the techniques of shooting movies, using a clapperboard, and realised how hard the process is. Espoir had no idea of how much work was required in creating a whole movie because watching them seems so smooth and fun. He learned to appreciate movie crews ever since then. Before tapping into filmmaking, the artist was a movie subtitle generator, and language translator in English, French, and Swahili. His love for art started in 2017 while he was at an Expo in Gisenyi, where he witnessed a young traditional artist making wonders in a live painting that left observers mesmerized. “It was at that point that I was certain that I would discover a new aptitude, however, I yearned to use a computer to draw. Through tutorials on YouTube, and research from experienced digital artists, I learned the basics.” In 2018, the artist created his first vector art in adobe illustrator which people around him liked, and asked him to paint their portraits. All that is history as he is now a digital artist specialising in vector art and painting. So far, he has started tasting the fruits of his hands, nevertheless, he believes that he could be earning more money if only Rwandans understood digital art. He has noticed that traditional art is what sells mostly as people resonate with it better. His role model is Arthur Mitchell, professionally known as ‘ChiWorld1234’, because he shares his creative vector art, step by step on his social media platforms without hiding any step, his kind heart of allowing others to learn from him is exceptional. “He is the best digital art vector who made me believe that I could actually be skilled in the art. I recall him congratulating my work that I had shared on Instagram and tagging him, that he followed me. This was very thrilling as it was the first time to be followed by a verified person.” Espoir contemplated ways to connect with the endowed artist that every post he shared, he tagged and hash tagged Mitchell. ‘I recall him appreciating my work, posting it on his Instagram story for a week. He also reached out to my DM to encourage me to keep doing better.’ The youngster anticipates starting a company that will create, and teach anything related to digital art like 3D cartoons, 2D cartoons, gaming characters, and 3D animation movies (completed in two hours). When not painting, or translating, the artist is busy in his body tattoo business, a talent he learned from his best friend in 2021. “Seeing him create body art in an astonishing way, propelled me to purchase tattoo material via Amazon. In just one year, I was good at it.” Espoir is also gifted in constructing websites, and coding, a skill he grasped while pursuing computer engineering in school.