• 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…

  • Arts & Crafts

    Tres Marias: art up for auction for the benefit of the survivors of Super Typhoon Haiyan

    If you’ve been following my Instagram, you’ve probably seen me posting progress pictures of a matryoshka doll set I’ve been painting for the past few weeks. In 2012, I bought a set of black chalkboard matryoshka dolls from Muji. I love Muji’s stuff– I always think their “blank” products are perfect for customising (see the Muji colored pencil tube I turned into a kokeshi doll). Their matryoshka dolls aren’t any different. These chalkboard nesting dolls came in a set of five with white chalk included (I’m trying to look for a product link online but Muji seems to have discontinued producing these dolls). I bought the dolls knowing I would…

  • Arts & Crafts

    Review: Stampin’ Up! Undefined Stamp Carving Kit

    Look what I got to play with recently! It’s been a while since I carved any stamps because I’ve been busy with illustration work. I’ve been itching to dig my tools into erasers and rubber and this came at a perfect time! [pinit]   It’s a Stampin’ Up! Undefined Stamp Carving Kit which comes with everything you need to start carving your own custom rubber stamps. Fun! I’m not a fan of pre-made creativity and apart from the time I was ten and bought some kiddie stamps from a neighbour’s garage sale, I’m not the type who would buy ready-made stamps. Some old stamps I got from a garage sale…

  • Arts & Crafts,  Singapore,  Travel

    Singapore’s Bras Basah Complex and Art Friend, the Asian equivalent of Michaels Arts and Crafts

    (Read the first part of this two-part series here) On our last full day in Singapore, my family and I decided to go our separate ways one afternoon since we all wanted to do different things. My parents went to Bugis, a street/flea market (they later complained that it was just like Manila’s Divisoria), my brother did touristy stuff like the Gardens by the Bay since he didn’t know what else to do (haha), and I took this chance to go to Bras Basah Complex. Photo: Wikipedia

  • Arts & Crafts,  Singapore,  Travel

    Singapore stationery loot: kikki.K and The Little Happyshop

    As you may have noticed (or not) from my last Wordless Wednesday, I was in Singapore recently. I was there together with my brother and parents for my parents’ 30th wedding anniversary. I don’t have a travel journal for Singapore and probably won’t be making one (at least not for this trip). Singapore is nice. REALLY nice. But that’s all it was to me– nice. Singapore is a destination a lot of Filipinos have been to due to its proximity to our country (3 1/2 hours by air), the abundance of cheap airfare from Manila, and the lack of need for a tourist visa. A lot of people, tourists and…

  • Arts & Crafts

    How to carve eraser stamps

    When I first started carving eraser stamps early this year (2012), I knew only ONE other person locally (Lorra of Stars For Dreams), who was also doing the same thing. In the last few months though, crafting, and stamp carving especially, has been the trendy thing to do among twenty- and thirty-somethings in Manila (along with calligraphy and washi tape!). The DIY/handmade/crafting movement has been going strong for the last few years internationally, thanks to Etsy, and Manila has started to catch on. Crafting is not just for kids and little old lolas anymore! Some of my rubber and eraser stamps. I’ve sporadically been posting my eraser stamps on Instagram…

  • Arts & Crafts

    My DIY chevron Chuck Taylors

    What do you do with an old pair of white Converse Chuck Taylors? You decorate it with a black fabric marker, that’s what!     This certain style of Chucks has a reversible tongue — you can choose to wear it with the tongue underside displayed if you wish. I decorated the pink tongue with polka dots.     I drew a chevron template to use as a pattern for the shoe. Chevron patterns are very trendy right now, and while I’m usually not one to follow trends, this is one trend I like. Also, it’s easy to draw. LOL.   My cats seem to approve. Sushi   Tiger  …

  • Arts & Crafts

    DIY Washi-taped Keyboard

      Just recently, I was without Internet for two weeks. For a country where a lot of BPO companies conduct business, we sure do have sucky, local customer service *coughPLDTcough*. For most, two weeks without Internet is like a death sentence, but for me it was like rehab. I had Internet on my phone (however slow *coughGLOBEcough*) so it wasn’t that bad. Also, being (partially) disconnected from the online world gave me a chance to start on things I had previously been putting off. Like washi-taping my keyboard.   I got the idea from Minifanfan who seems to have started the trend. I’ve been meaning to washi my keyboard ever…

  • Arts & Crafts

    Rubber/eraser stamp carving, part 2

    I live on the Internet. Screenshot of my old online digs, courtesy of the Internet Wayback Machine. I’ve been online and making websites since 1998, in various places on the web. I am grateful to have been an impressionable teenager then, quick to embrace new technology and media at the time the Internet went mainstream. I blogged my life online, along with a regular circle of local blogger friends and we all kept updated on each others’ lives via Livejournal. Some of them I’ve known for about ten years now– some I’ve met in real life, or bumped into randomly in school/at work, and there are others I haven’t met…

  • Arts & Crafts

    Rubber/eraser stamp carving, part 1

    A relatively new hobby I’ve taken up recently is rubber stamp carving. It started when I stumbled upon some handmade rubber stamps being sold on Etsy some years ago. At the time, I was running my own Etsy shop (which I’ve since “retired” since work got in the way) and was looking to speed up the process and reduce the cost of packaging my products by having a custom rubber stamp logo made for my shop. The price of these custom stamps turned me off, though– they were about $25 USD for a small stamp. Yes, I know it’s a custom piece and it’s handmade but it was, for me,…