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. 🙂 Everyone shared their snacks and the place was filled with good vibes till the times the gates opened.
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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.  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.

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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:

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Collab: Customized desktop wallpaper for Allie, The Four-Eyed Wonder

I was asked by my good friend Allie to create a desktop wallpaper for her lovely blog and I couldn’t be more thrilled and honored! Thank for this really great opportunity, Allie!

When thinking of what to paint, I thought of a feminist princess and her pet merbird in a fantasy garden. I hope it makes you smile, because I certainly had a great time making it.

Here’s what I came up with:

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Download it from the blog of Allie, The Four-Eyed Wonder. Hope you like it!

P.S. My friends and I have been working on a super-special project that’s really exciting! Check it out here. 🙂

Daily drawings and my summer workshops

Hello lovely friends!

I’ve been a bit busy with work lately but I promised myself that I should draw/craft each day since I discovered that it’s what I really enjoy doing–a gift to myself, in a way.

Some watercolored flowers:

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I was reading the book Tikim by Doreen Fernandez and was delighted to read a piece about pastillas wrapper art, something I’ve always dreamt of owning, making. Armed with my leftover papel de japon and scrapbooking scissors, I made a freehand merbird cutting:

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Now to make pastillas. Hmm. I used to be obsessed with no-cook pastillas as a kid, and even drew the steps so I won’t forget. It involved condensed milk and powdered milk and dayap rind and I would often make it since it was so easy and yummy.

My printmaking workshop ended last week! My last piece was a kitty I drew in plexiglass using the drypoint technique:

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Since I love cats, it’s also what inspired me for our class exhibit piece for our graduation day in Mr. Fernando Sena’s art workshop. This is done in pastel, 1/4 illustration board:

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I practiced learning watercolor using a painting by artist Thomas Kinkade as reference, which made it even more challenging, considering that manipulating the medium is already a challenge, and we worked on plain sketchbooks (I was afraid I might tear the paper when I got it too wet):

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Learned about abstract painting too! I name this “Sayaw ng Sirena” (Mermaid’s dance), also done in pastel. I think I might be in love with oil pastel:

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Summer is workshop season

As a kid, summer equals “reading season”. My friends and cousins would be out there, having taekwondo lessons and music and art lessons while I chose to stay at home with my book-related adventures. Asked if I wanted to learn something new, I’d answer no, I’d rather stay in bed and read, and I was pretty much content with that, but deep down in my heart I knew I wanted to learn more about arts and crafts.

But–I was afraid. I was too shy and awkward and I feared failure and rejection too much that I didn’t even bother trying at all.

My fears overpowered my desire and that was a shame because if I really think about it, workshops are meant to be fun and not competitive–which is why I’m making up for lost time by joining as many workshops as my budget and time and schedule could allow. It’s challenging myself to follow through with that desire to create, to learn about various processes and techniques that are all transferable in the lovely world of arts and crafts. It’s also a neverending process of discovery, and I am learning about the techniques and materials that are suited for me and my short attention span. I also have the scanner personality, so there’s this huge urge to just try everything that interests me, even for a short amount of time.

Printmaking
I learned about this workshop from various friends, who all told me how they really loved their experience. Held at the headquarters of the Philippine Association of Printmakers, near CCP, you get to learn about basic printmaking techniques. I discovered that I am much too excitable which results in overinking (oops) and mismatched prints (shaky hands!) but this teaches me to see beauty in imperfection and to temper my excitement when using the press haha.

For my first monotype print, I made a merbird! Here are the other prints I made:
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I also tried drypoint, a mermaid! I bought an old xray I had and used it to make this print:

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Also stalked some kitties. I like that the area is shady and windy and has a nice unobstructed view of the sunset:

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Creativity + Level 2 Watercolor Crafternoon by Alessa from Life After Breakfast
Been wanting to try this set for the longest time, and I was so excited when I opened the box!
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Attempted to paint some shells. Lesson to self: Find an easier angle for intricate objects heh.

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Enjoyed the group “collab”:

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Met a lot of new friends and learned about color mixing here! Here’s the group:
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Yay to artsycraftsy learning! Photo taken by new friend Mars, thanks Mars!
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P.S. I got myself some statis flowers to spiffify the house. PLaced it inside jars decorated with washi tape. They make me smile each time I see them. I also have a vase with the same flowers in my office desk, to add cheer to my workstation.

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Artsycraftsy shenanigans, post-Easter edition

Met up with the crafty ladies for a craft tambay (we bought our fave tools!) and a mini-TWYK (Teach What You Know) sesh. Made some easter cards for them using the crayon-resist method and washi tape:

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Also! I bought a new Speedball cutter and I’m sort of in love with it. Thanks, Aya! So much in love that I hand-carved a few stamps within a few days:ImageImage

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Also tried linocutting! It was fun, but I was used to the soft erasers so it was a bit more challenging. I shall practice some more!: Here’s my first attempt, burnished using a negative canister;
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Tippy taught me some watercolor techniques that I used in some watercolored paintings,

The day my hair became the sun:
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For a friend’s birthday, she requested that I paint her a cake–I made her this cupcake, which is salted caramel, with strawberry orange buttercream icing and cherries:
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Do you paint while traveling? I discovered that I like it, my waterbrush making it easier and super fun. I used my Prang set here and painted the Baler mountain view from memory, while we were on our way home. Also used some crayons for the crayon-resist effect:

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I love sunsets and how it makes the world golden:

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With the lovely crafty ladies:
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Had a great time, girls! Sa uulitin!

New papercut banner and a selfie

I’ve been planning on making my own banner for this blog for the longest time and I was finally able to do it today!

Incorporated some DIY elements like stitches, DIY tools (pencil, scissors, a paintbrush) and my very own merbird and cursive handwriting. It’s also inspired by balloons because I like ’em and they commemorate my eternal state of hyperactivity. I’m hoping they’d remind me to stay hopeful and positive eternally too.

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Inspired by Mansy’s self-portrait and that I Made Face app, I made a papercut version of mah face and my favorite expression:

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I’m planning on challenging myself by making a papercut of one of my favorite quotes. To be honest, I’ve always had the worst handwriting ever, and it pulled down my average grade back in grade school because I always got seventy somethings in penmanship, haha :

Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year.“- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Wish me luck!

Artsycraftsy bucket list weekend

An Alice-themed Dr.Sketchy Sketchmob, joining Ukulele Manila and trying sidewalk chalk art! All those items were ticked off my bucket list today, Yay!

I’ve always wanted to join in the events of Dr. Sketchy’s Anti-Art School Philippines and I was able to join them today in a sketchmob at the fort today (another item in ze list!). I got even more excited when I found out that the theme was Alice, which I loved.

While waiting, I was able to try Carmen’s Best Salted Caramel ice cream at the Echo Store (new fave tambay place!) while I did this papercut entitled “Amihan’s Dream”:

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The other day I made another papercut that I called “Lyra’s Dream”. Am planning to make a series of papercuts revolving around the themes of dreaming, flights of fancy and feminism. Maybe I can make that “Have my works displayed in an art exhibit” dream come true some day soon? (Hint, hint, Universe) Haha. 🙂
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Met up with a friend from fashion school and we got to know the awesome people behind the event.

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Free tattoo stickers!

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Here’s the first pose:
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Which I tried to draw using my favorite drawing tool, my calligraphy pen, and then I realized that using it to draw in less than 15? 20? minutes was more stressful than satisfying. Especially when I couldn’t erase errors and had to draw hands. I really have a hard time drawing hands. Must practice more:

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Did the next drawing using a normal pencil this time:

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After that I got to meet some of the great guys from Ukulele Manila. I shamelessly introduced myself to them and told them I wanted to be part of their group and they were very gracious and welcoming. (I’m now a part of their group too!). The partner and I have been jamming with my lolo’s pamana ukelele each night (that I covered with washi in this post and I can’t wait to learn more about playing it and jamming with the group. 🙂
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Saw beautiful lampposts at BGC:

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Got to try another item from my bucket list: Sidewalk chalk art! Huzzah! The Doodle Art Enthusiasts group was there at the BGC walkway, doodling with colorful chalk and accommodating doodle requests. Was able to doodle as well, some LSPs and my merbird!
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‘Twas a lovely, artsycraftsy day. ❤ Happy Sunday!

DIY: Miniature trompe l’oeil beach view and papercutting attempts

Happy Friday, everyone!

I was checking our old beach photos and getting a bit nostalgic. I miss the beach and that summery vacation vibe, that excitement of looking forward to exploring our glorious islands and being one with nature–when it occurred to me: why not bring the beach to me? I’d love to be able to imagine that each day the beach is just outside our window, within my reach.

It’s an easy way to brighten your walls and remind you of how lucky we are to be living in a tropical paradise:

What you’ll need:

-A colored printout of a beach photo (or any photo of nature, or what you want to see), I wanted it to be miniature so I printed it in a super small size, but it’s up to you

-Washi tape (preferably brown to mimic windows or white or gray)

-Lace tape (optional)

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STEPS:

1. Place a washi tape border on all sides of your photo:

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2. Trim evenly and cut a thin strip of washi to be pasted in the middle to mimic a window. I did it three ways here: horizontally, vertically and both ways. I also added a strip of real lace tape to mimic lace curtains. You could also stick real fluttering fabric if you want, for that whimsical effect:

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Enjoy your beach view!

In other news, I have my list of crafty challenges and papercutting is one of them. Inspired by Rob Ryan’s intricate papercuts, I have attempted to make my own papercut art several years ago and failed miserably. I sucked at it, and almost nicked myself so I stopped and decided that it just wasn’t for me. Fueled by the new year and inspired by local crafters, I challenged myself today to try it again and made a merbird for my first attempt:

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I felt more satisfied with the results now than the results before so I made another one:Image

I felt like doing another one without thinking of a design in mind. I just wanted to cut shapes that are angular since I discovered that I didn’t really enjoy cutting curves, but then out of the blue this forest was formed and this kitty emerged. And then the fishes arrived:

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I surprised myself with this one, I never imagined I would like the act of papercutting, but now I do. Can’t wait to create other papercut designs in the future. 🙂

My first commissioned washi fashion collage

I’m very excited about my first commissioned piece! The partner’s highschool friend asked me to create a washi fashion collage for her room, with an “oriental” theme and with the base color as red, since it’s her favorite color. I didn’t have red washi tape from my stash (eep) so it was serendipitous when my friend Geli was kind enough to share and swap her red washi tapes with me. Thanks Geli!

Here’s what I did:

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I was also able to find some pretty feathers for my merbird. Here she is with her colorful tail and rubberstamped wings:

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