• Taiwan,  Travel

    I spent my Halloween at the adorable Rilakkuma Cafe in Taipei

    I have something to confess. I wasn’t able to visit a single night market in Taiwan 🙁 I know, I know. What a tragedy. To be in one of the best places in Asia to eat and not go to a single night market. I have my food allergies (I have a lot of them) to blame– two weeks before flying to Taiwan, I broke out in hives all over my face and entire body from eating fried chicken from a fastfood chain I tried for the first time. A bit paranoid from my experience (I had to go to the hospital ER where they hooked me up to antihistamines via IV), I wanted to play…

  • Musings,  Taiwan

    Spending my birthday in Taipei

    The day started out pretty bleh. I woke up having gotten just a few hours of troubled sleep. The cold weather had gotten to me while drawing outdoors the previous day, and I woke up on the day of my birthday with a clogged nose, a sore throat, a slight fever, and feeling as if all my mucus was in my throat (too much info?). I felt terrible and contemplated staying in my hotel the entire day to rest off what I felt was going to turn into the flu. Never mind that it was my birthday. I’ve never made a big deal out of my birthdays anyway and prefer to treat it as…

  • Taiwan,  Travel

    Quirky, illustrated Taiwan

    Hello from Taiwan! 🙂 I felt like getting away for my birthday and booked my flight to Taipei a little more than a month before my departure. Why Taiwan? I actually was considering going to Japan or Korea (both of which I’ve been to before) for my birthday trip but thought Taiwan would be cheaper (and it is), haha! Also, I’ve never been to Taipei beyond passing through its airport for layovers. I thought Taiwan would make for a good Asian trip for its proximity to Manila, availability of inexpensive airfare, and its street food. But my biggest deciding factor? TAIWANESE STATIONERY. I’m a sucker for stationery– stickers, notepads, pens, notebooks,…

  • Books,  Sketches and doodles

    20 Ways to Draw a Strawberry (and 44 Other Elegant Edibles)

    I posted a video on TikTok of me drawing in this book and the video blew up, with over 680,000 views 1.5 million views and 170,000 likes 352,000 likes as of this writing (tbh it’s lowkey stressful to have that many notifs blowing up my phone 😅). People have been asking the title of the book and where to get it so I decided to write this post 🙂 The book is 20 Ways to Draw a Strawberry and 44 other Elegant Edibles by Zoe Ingram. It’s available here on Amazon, but I got my copy from the Big Bad Wolf book sale in Manila last year (2018): 20 Ways to Draw…

  • Arts & Crafts

    I got into abstract painting as a joke. Joke’s on me.

    Warning: very colorful post ahead. In my younger years, I hated going to art museums and galleries and seeing crappy (to me) art being sold for a ton of money. I had a strong dislike for abstract art– the kind where the artist seems to just randomly throw goopy paint at a canvas and call it art, complete with a highly-philosophical, baloney-sounding artist statement about identity or some inner crisis. What I hated even more was the fact that people were buying it for a price the artist commanded. I’d have my eyebrows knitted together, thinking if perhaps I’m not a real artist (because I make happy, colorful things and I’m not filled with…

  • Faith & Spirituality

    Wooooh. Convicted!

    Note: This is a post I originally published on my personal Facebook account on March 25, 2018. In mid-2016 I was getting the sense the Lord was telling me I needed to delete my private online journal for safety and privacy reasons in the wake of a suspected cybersecurity issue (among other things). My LiveJournal (hello LJ friends who had access to my account!) had hundreds and hundreds of journal entries dating back to 2001. I had a strong emotional attachment to my journal. Journaling was my outlet and therapy; my journal was where I vented my frustrations, wrote for posterity the things I wanted to remember, told stories about…

  • Faith & Spirituality,  Musings

    “Congratulations!”

    That’s what the priest told me in the confessional when I went to confession recently. The past 6 months have been a struggle. I experienced spiritual fatigue, burn out, betrayal, doubt, persecution, hurt, loneliness. I also stepped down from my position in ministry to take care of my non-community priorities, and with it came speculation, rumors, gossip. Some people I thought were my friends weren’t friends, after all. I stopped talking to most people because I didn’t know whom I could trust. “Ano ba yan, Lord,” I sulked. “Ginagawa ko lang naman yung pinapagawa Mo sakin.”

  • Sketches and doodles

    To all the sketchbooks I’ve loved before

    I laid out my sketchbooks recently and was quite surprised to find I’ve gathered up quite a bunch already. I’ve always had sketchbooks even as a kid but I drew in them sporadically. I only started to fill up an entire sketchbook in 2010. I wasn’t an illustrator yet then; I was working as a fulltime graphic designer and drawing was merely a hobby– a mindless and inconsistent pastime for idle moments at work while I was waiting for client feedback on my design projects. In 2016/2017 when I already a professional illustrator, upon God’s leading, I let go of my illustration agent (more on that in a blog post…