Monday, January 16, 2017

Marshall Monday: Wander-Full

For the 3rd year in a row, I decided to celebrate my birthday by exploring a new island. This year, I visited Malapascua. Home to thresher sharks and friendly locals, the island is small enough to traverse on foot. So that is exactly what we did on my birthday. We took a long walk to get to know the island.

No stopovers for selfies, no complaints about being hungry or thirsty, no awkward or uninteresting conversation. 

Marshall - 1, humans - 0.

Sure, I had to stop when some scent distracted him for a second, but he was always happy to trot alongside me in a heart beat. Here are a few photos from our walk and beach swims. 

Just before letting him loose on the beach.

We went past this sand bar and the mangrove area.

We explored Malapascua's little winding roads. 

Then we came upon this cove covered with pretty red leaves.

Marshall made a friend during our sari-sari store stopover.

Then he went to test the water in another cove.

After about a 2 hour walk, my walking buddy is beat. 

But the next day...

Yup, back on the beach. And this time, with followers. :P

The only one who loves lying on the sand as much as I do.


Just keep swimming, swimming, swimming. ;)

He looked so happy to be back in the water. :) But, it was time to go. 

Till our next adventure, Marshmallow. Thank you for still being such wonderful and wander-full company.

Sunday, January 08, 2017

Marshall Monday: Surprise!

You know what I think is fun? Birthday surprises. I look forward to a few of them every year. For this special occasion though, I changed the rules a bit. This time, I did the surprising.

I haven't seen Marshall in 4 years. So imagine his excitement when I suddenly showed up to whisk him away to another island for my birthday trip! I swear if he could talk, this is what he actually said:

"Watdafuuuuu...! YOU'RE HERE!
You're here and taking me to the beach?!!
And my dad is in on this? YOU GUYS!

Or something like that.

So anyway, here's how the surprise adventure has gone so far.

Marshall at Daanbantayan port trying to contain his excitement.

Marshall on the small boat.

Marshall on the big boat.

Finally, Malapascua Island. :) Taking a walk down the beach path.

We checked into this cool dive shop and hostel.

Where he likes gazing out over the street and at the beach.

We had some breakfast muffins

and fun beach time.

Marshall played ball with the locals

and made more friends.

Plus, lots of chill time with his entourage.

It's definitely been such a treat hanging out with the Marshmallow again.   Not to mention spending time in this charming little island. Turns out, surprising friends on your birthday is a super idea. Especially sweet, cuddly, 4-legged ones who are stoked to see you after a painfully long time. ♥♥♥

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Only Good Vibes

Ever get that feeling of walking into a store and wanting everything in it? It can be fun, but sometimes it can feel paralyzing to have so many options. When this happens to me, I usually walk out not buying anything. Indecisiveness, what a bitch.

Well, this is the same feeling you might get from visiting With THOUSANDS of artists, each with their own gallery of art pieces, you may find yourself lost and overwhelmed. Honestly, you might think, "ain't nobody got time for that!"

Ahem. I do, actually. And I really don't mind rummaging or sifting through heaps of illustrations, typography or designs. So, I've decided to curate some of the most interesting works I've seen on Society6 and share them here. This is a way for me to help other artists get exposed, a way to collect works that inspire or delight me, and a way to share even more cool images with those who appreciate them.

Aaaaand, out of my own OCD, I've decided to do it by theme. So to begin, I've created a collection of works that radiate:
Only Good Vibes.

Palm trees + water + hand-drawn style
This print will look cute in any home.
Good Vibes by Mason Denaro

Because I love simple and playful black and white illustrations.
It's O.K. by DR Clothing Co.

When I read this line, I imagine a surfer dude with the typical lazy, raspy voice saying this with a big smile while tucking his sun-bleached hair behind his ears. So much good vibes. :)
High Fives & Floating Vibes by Ocean Ave // Lettering and Design

If you like to keep a tidy and modern looking place but have that tropical vibe, I think this lovely print would be a good match. 
Good Vibes by Bloombw

I'm also so attracted to geometric designs. This one though pink and feminine (which isn't really my style)is actually very cool.
Good Vibes Geometric by Mmartabc

You can't frame the sun, but you can frame this charming and cheerful print.

How can you not smile when you are greeted by this? :)

Hello Sunshine Gold by Terralogy

'Nuff said. Haha! This is ultimate hippie, good vibes.
Pyramid Scheme by Wharton

Brightness peaking out of dark clouds. Perfect for a kid's room or for a kid at heart. 
Stay Positive, Stay Happy by Alba Blazquez

Wise words, if you ask me. Hand-drawn is just my type. (Get it? :D)

Printable Quote , It's A Good Day to Have a Good Day by AlexTypography

What are those? Kittens? Bunnies? All sorts of cute creatures spilling out of coffee? Sold.
Good Day by Myrakins

Because good vibes are not only for the day. I like the cartoony and storybook feel of this one too.
Good Vibes V.2 by Dan Elijah G. Fajardo

To view the whole collection and order any one of these prints, click on the link below. :)

Friday, November 11, 2016

That Inking Feeling - An Anecdote About Inktober

A few of the illustrations I did for Inktober. These were the ones with the most likes.

The Inktober challenge has been going on since 2009 but it was only this year that I decided to join. I'm so glad I did. I usually stay away from online challenges (remember the ice bucket? That's the only one I remember because like I said, I don't join these things), but I may have had a few good reasons to join this particular one.

1. An unopened bottle of India Ink which I impulsively bought months earlier despite having no experience with this medium.

2. The desire to create something tangible. I needed a regular activity away from my digital devices and work with my hands again.

3. My Facebook timeline. It was starting to overflow with bad vibes. Political rants, judgmental brain farts, fake and dangerous news articles--it was getting overwhelming.

4. Fear of having forgotten how to draw. Or draw well. As a graduate of fine arts, people think that we've all got this skill forever but really, it's easy to lose or get sloppy when like me, you spend years working more with your computer. 

5. The need to keep myself occupied. I spend so much time alone, which I usually enjoy, but other times, it gets lonely. Most of my friends work regular hours and that means most days, I am by myself. I felt I needed something to distract me and keep my head in a good space. 

The decision was made. I needed to use my ink, spread some good vibes and improve my technique while I was at it. One cheerful/funny/playful illustration a day for every day of October. That's what I committed to. 

Almost suddenly, all these fun illustration ideas came at me, even at inconvenient times. Like, as I was about to fall asleep, or while driving my scooter in the rain, or as I was cramming for a work deadline. But it didn't matter, it got me so excited to execute these ideas and most importantly, share them. I've been too shy to put my work out there the past years but having a small goal, even as simple as getting people to smile, made me push aside any insecurity about my work and just put it out there, on my Facebook page and my Instagram account. I just thought, surely, someone was going to appreciate it. Like, my mom. Thanks Mama! :P

A lot of people joined the challenge and a lot also dropped out. You know why? Because it was fucking hard. It's not really a challenge if it's easy, right? We eventually get caught up with our day to day tasks and concerns that we run out of the energy to sit and draw. For me, it was towards the end. News got heavier, personal affairs brought me down, even the shift to gloomy weather here didn't help. It suddenly felt like so much effort to produce something good. It got frustrating and I wanted to forget the whole thing. The problem was, I also wanted to keep my word. By announcing before hand that I was going to do this challenge I kind of left myself without a choice. (Thanks a lot, past Denise!) So I stuck with it.

In the end, I received so much good vibes back from friends and strangers, folks who messaged me about the way my works cheered them up. I even made new friends and possible business partners! The positive response really boosted my confidence and interest in illustrating again. Apart from that, this whole thing got me to open an online shop. As friends asked if they could purchase my illustrations, I thought that it wouldn't hurt to just put my stuff out there for anyone who wanted a copy. 

Which is the whole point of this post, actually. I just wanted to announce to anyone who still reads blogs (why, by the way?) that I have some of my Inktober stuff out there, as prints, mugs, shirts and my favorite--shower curtains. 

Also, to revive my poor, forgotten blog, I decided to make use of this space for sharing anything related to my new adventures as an illustrator/shopkeeper. Haha! So there you go. If you appreciate, surfing-related drawings or cursing animals. You might find something you like here. They are mostly inspired by life on the beach with a touch of my sometimes distorted way of seeing things. Here is the link to my shop and a preview of some of the available artworks. Thanks for reading! Bravo! That was like, 29 Tweets. ;)