Just add water: A watercolor fair 2015

I was so excited when I found out that Dianne was organizing a watercolor event. πŸ™‚ 🙌 I have attended a pointed pen meet before and a brush calligraphy meet and even an art materials meet but never a watercolor meet or a formal event so this was really awesome. We got to see amazing artists do demos and we got to ask them questions and learned a lot from them. I also enjoyed the part where we exchanged artist trading cards–so happy I got to exchange cards with so many talented local watercolorists. πŸ™‚

Group photo! Also got to hang out for a quick artambay after with Manuel Jiongco, Paola and Megan—artists I admire. πŸ™‚


Some of the artist trading cards I made, using metallic kuretake watercolor paint. πŸ™‚


The beautiful cards I got in exchange:


I also treated myself to a gold Escoda travel brush and Shin Han Pwc paint from Artwhale. I painted some quick florals this morning:


P.s. Here’s a painting I did the other day, my first time to try negative painting. πŸ™‚


My first pen meet!

I was able to join the 3rd pen meet Manila last Saturday at Project Pie, and it was one of the funnest events I’ve attended. I didn’t know what to expect, since it was my first but I loved the energy and super enjoyed the time I spent with everyone–mostly friends from instagram and the local arts/crafts scene πŸ™‚


I’m planning on joining the next one! Thanks, Sienne of inkcatcher for organizing this fun event! πŸ™‚

I went to BGC after for the art mart and bought the following:


(see my instagram: @aphazia for details on who made what) πŸ™‚

Calligraphy exchange Manila 2014

I added the year because I’m looking forward to the next one next year! πŸ™‚

Felt lucky and blessed to be part of this star-studded event. Thanks to the awesome and talented organizers, I met a lot of my fave local calligraphers and letterers.
I wasn’t able to take decent photos because I was too busy testing pens and blabbing away haha.


I pressured June into making a fansign hehe sorry June, but thanks so much! (Because owning a fansign from her is in my bucket list). Here she is (seated) with (l-r) Shawie, Mich, Anina, Ella and Lorra.


I was shameless and asked for fansigns from Abbey Sy, Anina Rubio, The Fozzy Book, Patrick Cabral, John De Veyra, Geli Balcruz, Paola Esteron, Ella Lama, John Ed, Jelvin Base, and June Digan! Thanks so much!


Artsycraftsy experiment: hydrus and micron

I was able to score a copy of The Paris Review with Samantha Hahn’s illustrations. I got so inspired that I made some fanart, usingΒ  Hydrus from Dr Ph. Martins and a Micron pen. I don’t use pencils to sketch first so the proportions are whack but that’s the way I roll. Excited to make more!


From the band Warpaint, guess who?


I spilled the paint accidentally on top of this haha–but it adds character, so I don’t mind πŸ™‚

Artsycraftsy adventure: Make temporary tattoos!

I felt so lucky and happy when I found out I had a slot in Alessa from lifeafterbreakfast’s temporary tattoo-making party.

So excited that I arrived an hour before the scheduled time lol.

When we started, I got so giddy and excited and started filling my paper with everything I fancied: merbirds, cats, a unicorn, some flowers:


I got so excited that I accidentally ruined a third of the sticker sheet in my haste haha.

The unicorn survived though:


With creative genius, Alessa. Her flower tattoo is too lovely for words:


I then headed to the Global Pinoy bazaar at World Trade Center where I got these goods:


Mini Bonifacio bust, handmade unlined notebook from @pluma_ph, adobo choco from theo & philo, chinese waterbrush from @craftcarrot and panda plush from cliqnship!

Happy times: June 2014

I love making lists, and love it more when they’re lists of things I love! Here are some of the things I’m grateful about:

❀ Finishing the season 9 of Buffy. I have meh feelings about season 8, but season 9 was just so good, and reminded me of the series plot-wise and dialogue-wise. Am in the middle of reading Angel and Faith right now, sometimes losing sleep because I want to read it all in one sitting.

❀ I moved my voting precinct so voting would be easier and nearer

❀ Finally tried making my own Magnum creation: vanilla ice cream with a dark chocolate coating, parmesan popcorn, freeze-dried raspberries and yoghurt nibs. Topped with a caramel drizzle:


❀ That outrageous National warehouse sale near home, where I found brand-new books that were only around Php30 each! I got some comics for only Php5 each!
(check out my instagram for my loot: http://instagram.com/aphazia)

❀ Winning at that CBTL contest where the prize was a trip to my idol Ramon Orlina's museum at Tagaytay, wherein he was the one who toured us! #fangush


❀ Discovering a library that's near our office, with a lot of art books, books I coveted, and super nice staff! I love the Union Church of Manila's library! Membership for the entire year is only Php200. I've been dreaming of this my entire life and the Universe answered my prayers! This might curb my book-buying enthusiasm. Maybe. I'm planning on donating my old books and magazines there too, since they also accept book donations.

I'm so excited about these books I've borrowed:


What has been making you happy recently? πŸ™‚

Exploring the Universe: California-Getty Museum

Whenever I visit a new country, I try to fit a museum/library visit in my itinerary. I got lucky and got to visit not just one, nor two, but four (!!!) museums during my California trip. This museum is my fave!

The Getty Museum housed most of my favorite works of art, and the architecture is equally gorgeous. If I had more time, I’d probably stay here for a week, not running out of things to do/draw/admire. I think my mouth was open during the Getty visit, I was just too awestruck and I couldn’t believe I was seeing these artworks in the flesh!!


Before the trip to the museum, here are some shots from the road on our way back to LA from San Francisco:


We stopped at Iron Skillet along the highway for some authentic diner food. They had the most scrumptious tart and sweet blueberry preserves which I ate with a bowl (!!!) of whipped cream, atop my pancakes. They had the cheeriest service, so we left our server a short note thanking her together with the tip. πŸ™‚



The day we went to Getty Museum! You park in the basement and take a train going to the museum itself. For security purposes, perhaps, and for aesthetic purposes as well. I really appreciated this, since we got to see the beautiful skyline. I took a snap of these trees with pops of red:



Kunyari candid hehe:




Here are snapshots of just some of my faves! The whole place itself was heavenly, from the steps going to the entrance (above), to the garden at the ground floor.

I used to have this obsession with Andy Warhol and pop art, but right now, I’m obsessed with the Impressionist movement. I love Monet, Mary Cassatt, Renoir and Chagall, and was happy that I got to see some of their works in Getty. I also took some photos of new favorites:






I’ve never seen a hummingbird before, and I was delighted that I was able to see a lot of them in LA! My aunt’s house had a hummingbird feeder which we filled with nectar for these birds. Each morning and before sunset, we’d get to hear the quick flapping of their wings, which sounded like a bee buzzing. The first time I saw one, I was reading outside their balcony while having breakfast and covered my ears since I thought there was a bee nearby (I had an irrational fear of said bee entering my ears, haha). To my amazement, it was a hummingbird! I saw several colors in several places, but I still can’t get enough of them.

At the leftmost part of the photo, you can see a blurry orange blob, which is the hummingbird at the balcony of my Tita’s house:


I was able to photograph one in Huntington Garden, and another in this museum:



I love the interactive area for kids, and could play here the whole day. Because I’m secretly 12.

This is the view from outside the top (?) floor of the museum. More proof of the loveliness of this place. I was also able to check out the garden during the golden hour, which I’ll blog about soon!




More shots taken on the road, on our way home from this day filled with beauty:



Exploring the Universe: California part 2-The LA Art Book Fair at MOCA

When a friend (Thanks, Iori!) mentioned that there would be an Art Book Fair at LA at around the time I arrived, I immediately googled it up-this was an event I did not want to miss. Luckily, we were able to check it out on its last day (which meant that most items were on sale when it was nearing the closing hours), so, yay!

Printed Matter’s LA Art Book Fair held at The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA was an event that had everything I loved- handmade books, zines, comics, creators manning their booths to facilitate connections/interactions (and my fangushing), art books and lovely people.

Upon arriving, I immediately headed to the zine section, where I almost lost my marbles due to the sheer awesomeness of everything. Zines and zinesters everywhere! I had to be constantly reminded by my relatives to check the whole area first before spending all my monies in the first stall I checked out. Everything was glorious. It was overwhelmingly fantastic.

I chanced upon the stall of one of my idols, Esther Pearl Watson! I saw her comics first in BUST magazine (Tammy Pierce is Unlovable) and it’s the first part I read in the magazine, I love it so.Β  It was a bit embarrassing when I asked her if she had more items by EPW only to realize that she IS EPW. She was so friendly and nice!



I got to meet a lot of my idols at the zine area! I was too happy browsing the zines in all the tables that I forgot that I haven’t checked out the other areas yet, yikes. This ended with me hurrying past the queer zines and art books just so I could visit all the stalls (and they were a lot!). Haha. I wanted to buy this queer zine anthology but I used up my budget in the zines area. Note to self: Pacing is key when it comes to book fairs.

Here’s photographic evidence of the awesomeness of the fair, and snapshots of the people who were cool and friendly (and beautifullllll):
I’ll post a pic of my loot soon! I bought a lot and I might give away some of ’em (I’ve read them all already), so stay tuned!

Read Part 1 here.

Best night ever: Metric Live in Manila 2013

As I’ve mentioned in my previous post, I dreamt of attending a Metric concert. I’ve been listening to them for around ten years (I found out about them through an lj music community), and I can just imagine how wonderful it must be to see them perform live.

When I heard the news that it was confirmed–Metric would be having a concert in Manila, I couldn’t believe how fortunate I was. This incredible opportunity presented itself after the realized dream of watching a Tegan and Sara concert and it felt too serendipitous. I listed Metric right after Tegan and Sara in my grand bucket list of “Bands I want to see live in Manila”. This is turning out to be one of the best years of my life.

My partner would be abroad during the concert and I was prepared to watch on my own. Good thing new friends Karen and Evee would be watching too–I felt like I’ve been friends with them for the longest time haha, they were really fun to be with. I was in Aura around 11 am, like the true addict that I am, but when I went up there was no line yet so I visited all the stores in Aura and ended up buying some calligraphy pens heh.

Flying Ipis was the opening act, which gave me a happy because I love the band and their energy. (Emily Haines apparently did too–She said: “I love Flying Ipis, I wish we could take them with us”, or something like that). She attempted to speak a few Tagalog lines too, which made me love her even more.

Watching them perform live was nothing short of magical. I want to be Emily Haines when I grow up. She’s lovely, charming, superkind and super-talented. I took some videos for the gf but mostly I danced my heart out and sang/lip-synced (my Tegan and Sara vids are overpowered by my off-key singing so lesson learned haha). I was dancing so vigorously during Gold Guns Girls that I mistakenly jumped off the ledge and fell on a girl beside me, dragging Karen with me (Sorry!).

I couldn’t stop sobbing like crazy during “Breathing Underwater”. When I listened to Synthetica, this was the song that instantly leaped at me from the album. It was similar to the effect of first hearing “Hold On When You Get Love And Let Go When You Give It” from Stars, in which I claim favorites from their latest album and listen to it till kingdom come. When Metric played this song I was probably pms-ing but the tears just came out in buckets and I felt all the feelings in the world. Mostly elation, and gratefulness. They’re playing one of my faves! Right here! Right now! I cannot express how lucky I felt at that time, even if the song is a bit melancholic. The live version sounded better than anything I could have ever imagined. Right now I am listening to Metric songs on repeat and this song still makes me tear up a bit, haha.

My fave songs from Metric are: Parkdale, On The Sly, The Police and The Private, Breathing Underwater, Raw Sugar and Gimme Sympathy, Gold Guns Girls, Speed The Collapse and The Wanderlust. They played a good mix of old and new songs and I loved their acoustic rendition of The Police and The Private. That acoustic Gimme Sympathy was perfect as well, and my vids stop halfway because I couldn’t stop myself from clapping my hands, or dancing and singing along. When Emily Haines went down the stage I got to touch her and I couldn’t stop staring at my hands filled with gold fairydust. Evee got the setlist too! Yay!

There was a meet and greet portion after the concert and the floor tickets were allowed to mingle with the band members. I wanted a photo with everyone, of course, and some fangirling, heh. The whole band (James, Joules, Joshua, Emily) was really accommodating and nice and they all got to hold my pink pen (which I kinda regret not giving Emily when she marveled at how it can write with both ends) and calligraphy pen during signing. I was starstruck and a bit flustered because of too many emotions and how fast everything was happening, haha, that I was not able to get a photo with Emily. I did get to hug her for a long time when she went out the second time. She asked me where her bandmates were and I think in my shock I mumbled a soft “I dunno” or “I’m not sure”. HAHA. One of my fave local artists, Mich, gave the band an excellent customized artwork and I was so happy for her! I regret not making one but I did not expect this great opportunity and I hastily made her a merbird.
I gave her the customized merbird of herself singing using a blank index card I found in my bag (I wasn’t prepared!). I explained that it was a merbird, a bird that could swim, and she asked “Is it breathing underwater?” OHOHO Emily y u so witty? She was so gracious about it, and she said she has a place where she keeps all the artwork she receives, and asked if it was okay to fold it. I think I was so in awe that I just nodded with my jaw to the floor. True story. She folded it and placed it in her back pocket. A piece of me is there, you guys! ETERNALLY.

I followed her around and got to hug her a second time when we talked a bit about “Live It Out” and how it was my fave, and she said it was hers too (OMG we were talking about their albums asjdkajsfkjskfjd), and and and

I have no words for how happy I was when I went home that night. Thank you so much, friends, and thank you, Universe, for being a great big enabler.

Now for the photos! Sorry for the crappy quality, these were taken using my phone– it was dark and I was trembling with excitement:





Yay new friends! πŸ™‚

Two days with Tegan and Sara (Tegan and Sara Live in Manila 2013)

If this is a dream, please don’t wake me up.

I first heard Tegan and Sara’s music more than ten years ago, when my friend Marie (the most hardcore TnS fan I know) introduced me to them via her multiply page. I listened to their songs and stalked them online and immediately became a fan. Aside from the fantastic music, I loved how close they were (makes me wish I had a twin!), and how they’re so funny and out and proud. They were in that grand bucket list of musicians I want to see perform live, right in front of me (which includes Metric, The Weepies, Leona Naess and The Spice Girls, among many others). A false alarm, several online petitions, crushed Singapore dreams and many months later, here they are! ASDJKAJFDLKASJLFKJALKS *shaking and crying*

We arrived at the Meet and Greet at around 8 am, and I bought my ukulele with me so I can have it signed.TnS impostors:

ImageAt around 7pm, we were over the moon when we saw them inside the Greenbelt premises. It was worth the wait, just to see them a meter away from us, and I told myself I’d hug them even if the bouncers drag me away from the stage during the signing.

Sara whispering sweet nothings in my ear. Must be discreet. Haha. (I kid). Photo from Marie (Thanks!)ImageWhen it was my turn, I gave them my Tegan and Sara merbird fanart in a flash and proceeded to ask them for hugs (shameless but I don’t care haha), and was so distracted by hugging Tegan that I don’t know if Sara heard my flustered “yesss” when she asked me if the fanart was for them, heh. No pictures were allowed, BOO. If the organizers asked me to pay 100 so I can take a photo using my camera phone I would have gladly paid them on the spot. Money-making shenanigans! Not cool. Why can’t you just give us what we want, which is a bit of time to show our love and appreciation to the twins, and a chance to preserve that memory with a very quick snapshot? Knowing how kind and gracious the twins are, I don’t think they would reject that request. We really hoped we were informed about what we’d be getting with our money because if we had known ahead of time that pictures (even using our own phone cams) weren’t allowed, we’d have purchased both the cd deal and the 1500 Greenbelt deal (which was quickly sold out). I might have had to pawn some things or something like that, but my point is if they had been more transparent, we’d be less angry and they’d possibly get more profit, if that was what the organizers were after. We, the loyal fans of Tegan and Sara, just hate feeling like we’ve been duped. We offer you our money and our trust and we feel like we’ve been betrayed with all these last-minute surprises and changes. To say we’re pissed and disappointed would be an understatement.

Anyway, the Universe was kind, and…I GOT TO HUG THEM. BOTH OF THEM. They were so nice about the whole thing, which makes me love them even more. The gf and I got our cds signed and we were on a fangirl high the whole night.

At the concert venue, we arrived at around 9 and met awesome earlybirds. Can I just share that these people are the most amazing concertmates I’ve ever met this lifetime? Everyone was so disciplined and organized and we were able to rally the troops to form a cheery, fun-filled line out of our own initiative (What do you say, let’s organize the next TnS concert ourselves? HAHA) Join the Tegan and Sara Philippines group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/teganandsaraphilippines/) at FB if you want to meet the very friendly and welcoming group. πŸ™‚ Everyone shared their snacks and the place was filled with good vibes till the times the gates opened.

A tip to the organizers–I think any fan in any event would also appreciate feeling appreciated, and during the ingress, there’s bound to be crazy devoted earlybirds. Before you go barricading them, it would be best if you’d talk to them–communication is key and the way to a harmonious day–to inform them about how you need them to vacate the premises or if it’s okay for them to stay there but the metal barricades would have to be placed there for the gate setup, or any explanation, really, instead of just pretending to not hear them when they’re talking to you, or ignoring them completely.Β  They’re not unreasonable, they’re just there crazily earlier than you because that’s how much they love the performers. Haven’t you felt that kind of devotion towards a band/musician? Niceness begets niceness.

One of the best parts of this day was when I was blathering about how I really really wished my merbird fanart would show up in their instagram page, and a few minutes later, I was called and saw the most amazing sight. All my creys:

ImageLook how creative the fans are! Karen and Kasey made cookies. HARDCORE.

ImageThe masks above are for our “masquerade party”. We interpreted it as a mask party and our chance to pledge our allegiance (and meet fellow secret fans in the office haha).

Marie and I got matching shirts. We bought official merchandise, a shirt and a set of postcards.

ImageWe all want to be near the twins, so my tip to the “pushers”: Next time, arrive early if you want to be nearer than stage rather than elbowing the earlybirds, okay? Be nice. It’s okay, though. The energetic performance from the twins made the night an unforgettable fantastic one. Karen was lucky enough to get Tegan’s pick, which I caressed, using my face. I guess this means my face has been Tegan’d. Good times.

My hands were trembly from excitement so the photos are blurry, heh. ImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImage

Thank you, Universe for making me really lucky and making this year the best year yet. ❀

P.S. After we got our Tegan and Sara tickets, the gf and I were thinking of dream concerts here in Manila, and Metric was on the top of our list. A few days later the announcement about Metric appears. MAGIC.

P.S.S. Here’s another fanart I did, Tegan and Sara as characters from Riverdale! I was addicted to Archie comics and having them as staple characters in Riverdale (resident heartthrobs) would have been crazy exciting: