On self-portraits

In my instagram (@aphazia), you’ll probably see me post the occasional self-portrait. When I want to experiment with materials and challenge myself, that’s what I do. I feel shy asking people to model for me so I do it myself, with the help of a mirror, and only my head area, since they’re done mostly during lunch break or that merienda break. Having a time limit pressures me to work quickly, and to not think about the output too much, which I like.


This one’s the latest self-portrait I’ve done which I called “Hungry girl in tattered hoodie”. I wanted to test my new mechanical pencil and I’m still not a pencil fan, but I’m hoping to change that.

This is my 100th post! Yehey! Thank you for joining me in my artsycraftsy/obsessive journey. Let me know if there’s something you want to see more in this blog.
🙂 Have a great day!

Exploring the Universe-California 2014: Pre-LACMA visit and cats!

Before we went to the awesomeness that is LACMA, I went around the area to explore for a short time. I took snaps of colorful things and architecture and basically everything that caught my eye. Here’s a peek:IMG_7252IMG_7254IMG_7256IMG_7268IMG_7274I love cats, as you might have noticed, and my aunt’s in-laws have been adopting kitties and loving them as much:


My LACMA post deserves another entry, but I’m sharing one of my favorite photos from that trip here. I loved this interactive artwork, and couldn’t help but hug these plastic thingamajigs as well, after I saw this kid doing it. It gave me a happy. IMG_7276

Painting with gouache

My fascination with gouache stems from the reviews and wikipedia articles that I’ve read: it’s like watercolor and acrylic, they said.

I played with it several times before, but always with other mediums like a white accent on a watercolor painting, or with acrylic as I painted those matryoshkas.

When I did try to paint using pure gouache, it was pure love. It does dissolve like watercolor (only more opaque) and you can blend it and layer it like acrylic.

I took this photo of a bottle because I liked the shape and the tiny glass bubbles near the tip:


Here’s what it looked like when I finished painting it. Those tiny glass bubbles were a real challenge!


Flower power

I couldn’t get the amazing fashion illustrations with dresses made of flowers by @grace_ciao from instagram out of my mind, so I decided to try and make some too!

I used the wilted, fallen blooms from a bouquet given to my mom, fallen gumamela flowers from our hospital visit to my tita, and during lunch today, I picked up some fallen petals from the fire tree at the park near our office.

Made some fashion illustrations using the fallen blooms, I think I’ve got a new obsession!




Happy weekend! What have you been up to lately? 🙂

Wrap-up: 30 brave days (and 30 more)!

In a past post, I mentioned how I wanted to be “braver” and jump out of my comfort zone. Thanks to Wanderrgirl’s #30bravedays challenge, I’m happy to report that the past month has been a very exciting one! Check out new brave things I did:

✔ Play the harmonica in my instagram account
✔ Create art using a pin and nail polish (inspired by @paperfashion)
✔ Meet, greet, have my harmonica autographed by all the members of Moonpools and Caterpillars. Ask for a hug from all of them
✔ Paint my wooden matryoshkas. Do not fear messing it up.
✔ Make mango salsa
✔ Try and join something that would require me to pester everyone to vote for me
✔ Taste new indian food and dine by my lonesome: dhal soup, paneer pudina tikka
✔ Agree to make commissioned artwork in watercolors
✔ Digital papercut using photoshop and mouse
✔ Try making loom bracelets
✔ Start of teach yo’self challenge
✔ Highlight my fave passages from books
✔ Draw my dream dresses from fave designers and tag them
✔ Teach myself Italian (Thanks Booksale and Duolingo!)
✔ Embossed tattoos! Take advantage of my dermatographia
✔ Frida tattoo from SF
✔ Draw using found branches
✔ Draw using a mechanical pencil–with pink lead
✔ Draw on black paper using glitter glue
✔ Climb rocky cliff on my own
✔ Swim to balsa on my own! Snorkel on my own, dive from balsa (all by my lonesome)
✔ Do that string art glue thing
✔ Make 30-second gesture drawings
✔ Buy things I do not know from Taiwanese grocery, eat them: asparagus ginseng juice, vegetarian mushroom oyster sauce, five-spice tofu (which I ate raw kase pwede daw)
✔ Embroidery portrait of my mom
✔ Make a watercolor portrait of my mom for mother’s day
✔ Make fashion sketches, and use fresh flowers for the dresses of the ladies (inspired by @grace_ciao)
✔ Paint a bottle from a photo I took, using gouache
✔ Get both sides of my head shaved, take selfies
✔ Start a makeup blog

I love how this challenge sort of “forced” me to think of brave things I can do every single day, things I probably would have put off for a later time because there’s no sense of urgency. Because of this, I am now inspired to do more acts of bravery, acts that would make myself proud, no matter how small it might seem to others.

The grand finale is my new makeup blog! I’ve been inspired by these lovely women, and this is something I’ve been thinking of doing for the longest time, but certain fears stopped me before: lack of funds for swanky makeup, mah bitchface when not smiling and uneven face when smiling (very awkward selfies, you have been warned), lack of a nice camera/computer for taking said selfies, lack of self control which might render me deep in debt, etc. etc.


I conquered all my fears today. In the end, my desire for having one won, and the basic reasoning that the “if you don’t like it, don’t look at it” rule can be applied in this case for haters of my face/my makeup experiments haha. When I am old and makeup can be bought and worn automatically through tablets rubbed against your face, that blog will make me nostalgic for the good old days. And I like memory triggers so here I go!

Interested in my new blog? Here it is. 🙂



At the end of each day, I love the transformation of the sky into a giant canvas, with a different artwork each day. The best part is that it’s totally free for the entire world, and no two artworks are the same. Makes you feel good to be alive, doesn’t it? 🙂










Exploring the Universe: California in film photos part 3: Huntington Botanical Gardens

One of the most beautiful places I’ve visited in California is the Huntington Botanical Gardens. They practically had to drag me out of there during closing time because I kept chasing after squirrels and gulping down deep breaths believing that the freshness of the air here is different (because of all the flowers and trees).

I was able to take some film photos. Mostly blurry, as always, due to being overly excited, hehe:



I remember: Wanting to write down everything

A year ago, I used to maintain a tumblr blog filled with memory triggers. I wanted to remember the highlights of each day, but didn’t have enough time to write a long-arsed diary entry about it. Thus this tumblr was born: http://rainbowramaremembers.tumblr.com. To add to the memoryceptionness of it, I tried to post a throwback anecdote of sorts with the explanation post, but sometimes the lazies get to me, or I become too excited about the happenings for that day so that was often scrapped.

I missed that tumblr though, and so here I am again, trying to revive that concept in this platform. I love Instagram but I want to blather on and on and this here might be a better avenue for blathering. Recently, I’ve installed the WordPress phone app since I am always in a hurry and I fiercely love blogs and blogging. I spend more time with my phone than the desktop anyway, and it’s super convenient to just snap a photo and squeeze the story out of it anywhere and then post it asap. This means more frequent posts, but I do apologize for the occasional typos heh. Mah phone’s screen is small.

Where was I? Oh yeah, memories.

Let’s start with this:


A spread from my Starbucks planner last year. Because I am a bit obsessed with this “documentation” thing, I drew things I’m grateful for using watercolor pencils. From the entries, you can see that I like stuffing my face with food, shopping, crafting, surprise meetups, and bacon. And my memory still isn’t that reliable–check out that entry at the bottom left, haha. Happy to note that things haven’t changed.

Quick quick sketches

Despite not being very good at it, I still enjoy making hurried sketches. I believe doing them trains me to think quickly and draw without inhibitions, and in turn, makes me more confident and less nitpicky.

In a way, it makes me braver. For the #30bravedays challenge, I dared myself to draw poses for 30 seconds each and not be too concerned about the output. A year ago, I joined a Dr. Sketchy drawing session for the first time and even if my output wasn’t spectacular (unlike all the great work of the teens beside me), I still had a great time.

When I discovered the site http://quickposes.com, I felt like I struck gold. You can choose a male or female model, choose the time, and choose if you want the models to be nude (which I’ll try next time).

Since I wanted to challenge myself to the max, I chose a 30-second interval and used my pink mechanical pencil. I’m not fond of using pencils but I tried it this time too. A non-mechanical pencil might be a better choice, since the lead of mine kept breaking. After doing 14 drawings, I switched to a ballpoint pen and it was much better.  I was able to draw 9 figures in about 5 minutes:


P.s. We went to the beach last weekend and I can’t wait to share more about the adventure with you soon!

P.s.s The “adventure” involved a real live blowfish, which was scary and awesome at the same time. Mostly scary. And exciting!