San Miguel launched their limited-edition San Miguel Pale beer cans featuring the work of two award-winning Filipino cartoonists, National Book Awardee and Illustrator Rob Cham, and the late National Artist Larry Alcala.
Dubbed the ICONICAN, the beer depicts various Filipinos from different walks of life in the artists’ signature styles.
Lauro “Larry” Alcala (1926-2002) was a popular cartoonist and illustrator in the Philippines best known for his “Slice of Life” cartoon series, first published in 1980, where he depicted different scenes of everyday Filipino life, while cleverly hiding his own image within his cartoons—preceding the “Where’s Waldo?” books. Alcala’s weekend cartoon series appeared in various Philippine newspapers and was later recreated for various advertising campaigns, including San Miguel Beer cans. He was posthumously awarded the National Artist for Visual Arts, the highest order bestowed on Filipino artists, in 2018.
Meanwhile, Rob Cham is a cartoonist and illustrator who received the National Book Award for his first graphic novel, “Light,” and the National Children’s Book Award for its follow-up, “Lost.”
In a social media post, Cham shared that the collaboration came about after those in charge of San Miguel Pale Pilsen enjoyed his work.
Cham added that the San Miguel team decided to pair his and Alcala’s work together over their shared penchant for illustrating crowds. Cham, in particular, drew different generations of Filipinos sharing a drink together. “They saw how we kind of liked drawing crowds and we were different generations of komikeros,” he explained.
Cham also revealed that the release of the limited-edition beer cans was pushed back due to the pandemic.