Gratitude list: 100 artsycraftsy items ticked off my bucket list, 2013

At the start of the year, I made a list of wishes in my crafty bucket list.

I’m happy to say that I was able to accomplish most of them! Except for “Work with glass”, which I hope I get to try on 2014. πŸ™‚

Here are artsycraftsy items I was also able to experience, items from a grand bucket list.
2013 has been such a generous, wonderful year, and my happiness and gratefulness bucket brimmeth over as well:

1. Try air-dry clay (Made pendants out of it)
2. Try modular origami
3. Check out Pinto Art Museum (For my birthday!)
4. Try Art Attack Products (The clay: great, The oil pastels: Not so)
5. Create my own scent for our diffuser (Citrus Olive)
6. Get featured in a broadsheet for my washi creations
7. Make handmade decor for Day’s baby shower party
8. Papel Picado
9. Learn to play the ukulele on my own, and jam with the gf, and then share it shamelessly on my Instagram
10. Make my own jam (Chili Strawberry Basil)
11. Make my own solid perfume: Olive-Tangerine-Mint
12. Attend Art Fair Phils. 2013
13. Do papercuts with my own illustration, then do a freestyle one.
14. Attend a Dr.Sketchy Alice-themed sketchmob event
15. Join Ukulele Manila
16. Draw on the streets using chalk at the Fort
17. Create a handmade papercut of blog logo/banner
18. Create a series of artworks (Dream sisters)
19. Create a panda bento box for her and a strawberry one for me
20. Try intaglio printing using an old cd c/o Serj Bumatay’s tutorial
21. Do a 3d papercut
22. Do a hollow book surprise
23. Wet on wet watercolor freestyle
24. Finally start that mixed media book
25. Buy a kalimba and play it
26. Play a gamelan and other asian musical instruments in Bali and CCP
27. Buy Hello Sandwich book
28. Experience silversmithing
29. Pound coffee beans oldschool way
30. Try lontar-palm etching
31. Try hand-printing, using leaves and flowers with markers
32. Study printmaking at the Phil. Association of Printmakers.
33. Try linocut, drypoint, monotype, monoprint, block printing
34. Try making glue rubber for papercutting/rubberstamping
35. Decorate home and workstation with flowers (statis in washi’d bottles!)
36. Have a small musical studio with my guitar, uke, kalimba, harmonica
37. Try ikebana
38. Visit that library in the street
39. Make yoghurt from scratch
40. Make a felt toy (stuffed cake)
41. Join a watercolor crafternoon
42. Join Fernando Sena’s art classes
43. Learn about shading, drawing with markers, pastels
44. Make a rubbercut with a rubber sole, hand printing
45. Hand color prints with watercolors
46. Check out Ronac Art Center
47. Make a landscape painting out of pastel
48. Make a portrait drawing of my mom and dad
49. Buy myself mint pens (mmm mint Stabilo)
50. Paint using oil pastels in a huge board (15×20)
51. Paint using tempera technique, watercolor
52. Make an abstract painting using pastels
53. Try classitex
54. Be personally recommended to sell handmade crafts (twice)
55. Create pastillas wrapper art
56. Create a galaxy in felt paper using pastels
57. Attend art workshop graduation
58. Receive three medals for the art workshop: Most outstanding student, best in costume, best in group work
59. Exhibit my “artwork” in an art “exhibit”
60. Teach arts and crafts to kids (Je’s pamangkins)
61. Be the chosen leader for my art class haha
62. Get recommended by a friend to design artwork for a store (Camille)
63. Be a dj for Jea’s road trip ride
64. Earn a certificate of completion with distinction for my online Art course (coursera)
65. Get myself teal markers from Art Friend
66. Pet Chestnut from cat socrates
67. Organize arts/crafts materials
68. Give my books/art materials and stuff away
69. Buy matboards
70. Try and make my very own travel palette using airdryclay and altoids tin
71. Start an online magazine: KATHA! (
72. Be the virtual dj for Katha’s “mixtape”
73. Have an offer to be a dj at a bar
74. Sing my “Fries” song with gf jamming on the uke over IG
75. Try a massage from hi-tech massage chair in mall, complete with inversion
76. Make a video for my washi collage in instagram
77. Punch holes in my belt c/o Mr. Quickie
78. Check out National Museum
79. See Spoliarium
80. Check out Paper Popup
81. Cook using induction (last sale, sale in SM thanks Universe)
82. Create customized merbirds (TnS birds, a portrait)
83. Attend Bloom Arts Festival (Here’s to joining next year *crosses fingers*)
84. Join the MuniPH X moonleaf event for Katha
84. Art drive for Yolanda kids
85. Sell merbirds for a cause
86. Sell customized merbirds for a cause
87. Give my customized TnS merbird artwork to Tegan and Sara
88. Have Tegan and Sara post my customized merbirds on their Instagram page (!!!)
89. Make Tegan and Sara face masks and wear it to our masquerade-theme office party and the pride march
90. Be a brand ambassador for Pixaroll
91. Color-your-own merbird
92. Cook perfect runny eggs using induction
93. Create optical illusion stamps
94. Carve stamps using rubber sole, erasers and speedball ez carve
95. Frame my papercut artworks
96. Cover walls with my art using washi tape
97. Create trompe l’oeil frames using washi tape
98. Cover walls with artwork by friends and idols
99. Have baby plants! Rubber plant, 2 oreganos, sanseveria and marigold
100. Appear on TV for Katha!

Thanks, Universe!

How about you? I’m thinking of new artsycraftsy goals for 2014, any suggestions?

Artsycraftsy shenanigans, April-May

Printmaking activities–my first collagraph:
Here it is with color, Mariposa’s dream. I created a papercut and added additional elements from nature:


With my classmates and instructors:


Aside from the glorious sunset after class, I also enjoy chasing this elusive kitty:

After last week’s class I was able to see my very first real sunflower! I’m not from UP so this is magical for me, heh:


We ate at ROC and met a playful kitty who stood up on her hind legs just to play with the string on my shirt hahaha. That same kitty kept on meowing for our attention and which woke up this sleeping beauty:


I ordered a Speedball E-Z carve rubberblock from Aya and made a mini rubbercut print of an elephant, because I love elephants:


Aside from learning about Printmaking from the PAP, I’m also learning about basic art concepts from the great master Fernando Sena. I wish I took up art classes from him when I was younger but oh well, it’s never too late! I’m learning so much, and I’m planning to take more lessons until I finish the entire course. Maybe after that I can finally achieve my dreams of having my works exhibited hehe (hint, hint, Universe! πŸ™‚ ).

I learned about shading:

…and drawing portraits. Here’s my dad and mom:


I also learned figure drawing. We were given scantily-clad muscled men drawings to imitate and we were instructed to dress them up. I chose to make them women:

Pastel never really appealed to me, until I learned how to use it properly. The trick is to really push it hard against the paper and not leave the white trace of the paper underneath. I always get amazed when it blends smoothly with previous colors, but my hands are really sore recently because of the muscle strain. I’m a bit pressured when drawing in class and I get shy when people check out my work but tell myself it’s part of the learning process.

Our assignment was to draw a local landscape scene and I chose a photo I took of Mt. Pinatubo’s crater, when we climbed it several years ago. The crater lake is originally just blue because the sun was too hot and didn’t cast shadows on the lake but the teacher repaired it and added shadows, which gives it more depth. I tell myself it’s a collab between me and the master and I get the giddies hahaha.


Before that, we had to draw this landscape scene involving this bahay kubo:


My classes have inspired and motivated me to keep on drawing and crafting, and I find myself with that growing desire each day, which leads me to overstuff my bag with materials I think I might use like these mint-colored pens and pencil, ready for the muse’s call. Or maybe that’s just an excuse to hoard, and look (and use when there’s time) at these pretties:


I’ve been drawing my food more often.

Pink apple mangoes, painted using watercolor:


Pondering Pon de ring donut ponders how YOLO:


Pon de rings I drew with pastel before I ate them:

I’ve stopped cutting paper temporarily because it also hurts my hand (and it’s still achy from the pastel dorkwings) but I kept on thinking of making something like this so I made it anyway. Papercut and watercolor:


Quick watercolor sketches:


Drawing hair fascinates and challenges me:

Tips, Tricks, and Techniques: Papercutting!

This is going to be a regular feature in this blog, because I want everyone to fall in love with the wonderful world of DIY. My crafting philosophy involves trying everything (with a bit of research online/through craft idols/books and magazines) and not being afraid of making mistakes–it’s all a part of the learning process! πŸ™‚ This philosophy has helped me to determine which artsycraftsy activities I love the most.

I’ll be sharing some DIY-related discoveries based on my experience with the craft, and I hope you find this guide (and future guides!) useful!

Papercutting involves the simplest of materials–a piece of paper, a cutter, and a self-healing cutting mat. Although I have tried cutting paper while sprawled on the floor (see previous post), I feel more relaxed doing it on a desk with a comfy chair. Safer, too.

I highly enjoy doing it inside coffeeshops that aren’t too crowded or distractingly noisy. I discovered papercutting some years back, when I saw the intricate paper cut artworks of Rob Ryan, and met the awesome Pergy with her ace papercutting skills.

I tried to make one myself, but I didn’t have a cutting mat back then so I used the yellow pages as a makeshift cutting mat, which didn’t work that great at all. My blade was also dull, so it kept snagging at my work, which frustrated me. However, I now have a nice cutting mat and a new sharp cutter, and Pinay crafters like Patricia, Richelle and Mansy (she’s going to have a papercutting workshop, do check it out!) inspired me with their beautiful papercut artworks, so I decided to give papercutting a second chance. We’re friends now, and my level of obsession reached that point where my day isn’t complete without doing a papercut. Heh.

Tips, tricks and techniques:

1.Plan, plan, plan. If you have a design in mind, consider which parts you’ll be cutting out and which parts you’ll be leaving. I like marking the areas I’ll cut out with an x or making marks on it with my pencil so I won’t be confused.

This is my most recent papercut entitled “Amelia’s Dream”. The outline of the face make up the positive space and the airplane cut out from her hair is the negative space. It might be helpful to read this post about positive and negative space. When making designs with a lot of positive space, bear in mind that everything should be connected though, so you can place tiny connectors between your border and your design, for example. In the papercut below, the lashes serve as my connector:


2. Patience is a virtue. Intricate details look lovely and they also require a certain amount of concentration andΒ  so set aside a pocket of time for doing it, unless that’s how you roll. I am highly impatient and I have the attention span of a two-year-old, but for some reason, the act of papercutting puts me in a sort of relaxed trance, while I try to achieve cutting fine lines. Sometimes I hold my breath and it helps!

3. You don’t have to focus on one area. Because of my short attention span, I switch between cutting hard, detailed areas and huge easy chunks to minimize fatigue. It’s up to you.

4. Sharp cutters = <3. I use a Genmes cutter but I’ve heard others use X-acto knives or those usual thin cutters. Try various cutters to find out which suits you, but changing the blades ever so often spells a world of difference.

5. Angles, then curves. If you’re like me and you have a hard time cutting curves, cut them as angles first, then go back and round off the angles. It’ll be easier then.

6. To each their own paper. I like normal bond paper, but I’ve also tried using an index card, tracing paper and a thicker, almost board-like paper. I love bond paper the most because it’s easier to slice, but then your mistakes easily show too, and sometimes it snags, when I forget to replace my blade. The thick paper was more durable and hid mistakes easily, but it was harder to slice too.

7. Freestyle it. It’s nice to have a planned design (see first tip), but I highly recommend just taking a piece of paper and cutting shapes you like. I believe that papercutting is just like drawing, where we each have our own distinct style. Doing this will help you discover what shapes you enjoy making (mine are long, lazy waves and easy askew triangles). You can then incorporate said favorite shapes in your designs. This would also familiarize you with the kind of paper, cutter, and cutter angle you fancy.

8. Mask accidents with masking tape or washi tape. That’s what I do. Just stick some tape at the back and cut off the surrounding areas. πŸ™‚

Some papercutting links you might like:
Paper cuts by Joe
Elsita’s papercut art. She made a detailed tutorial here that I love.
Lovely blog. Here’s an interview with the artist, Naomi Shiek. (Lotsa tips there too!)

Have you tried papercutting? Do share your experience!

Ticking off items from my crafty bucket list and new music-inspired papercuts

It’s only March but I’m glad to report that I’m feeling accomplished lately when I check out my artsycraftsy bucket list.
I was invited by Genie to join this fab foodie blogging event called “Our Growing Edge”. Read more about it here.

It’s no secret that I love food and eating, and this year has been turning out to be a very good year for food (diet schmiet!).

Aside from being able to finally taste food items and restos that are on my gluttonous wishlist (Carmen’s Best, Echo store resto, Stella and Circles, among others), I was also able to tick off food-related items from my artsycraftsy bucket list:

1. Make my own jam. Full post here.
I was pleasantly surprised with the end-product, and although it was pinker than the usual, it tasted just like what you’d imagine a chili-strawberry-basil jam to taste like. Meaning, it was edible, which was a relief. Haha.


2. Make a bento for me and my life partner. She’s on a raw diet so it was a bit harder to come up with a meal that wasn’t too light and to think of ways to design the bento, but I took it as a challenge. Read more about it in this post.


Here’s my updated artsycraftsy bucket list (it’s still growing, by the way!)

* Try embroidery
* Embroider on paper
* Make my own chalkboard paint
* Paint chip art
* Make that wrap dress
* Paint on those wooden matryoshkas
* Make a “tribute to artists I love” post/craft
* Make a paper quilt

I also made some new papercuts! They’re inspired by songs from Tegan and Sara and Stars (I still have a concert high):
Walking with a ghost/We don’t want your body:


Tried to make a 3d/pop-up papercut, words from my favorite Stars song, and a gentle reminder to continue living with hope and a happy heart:

Alice’s Dream and my first bento

For the first time, I tried papercutting at home. I was sprawled on the floor with my cutting mat propped against my legs and cutting very slowly and carefully lest I end up slashing my legs instead. I started this at CBTL but had to leave since it was getting too late and finished it at home. Here’s ‘Alice’s Dream’, because I love Alice and her curiosity:


One of the items in my craft bucket list include preparing a nice bento lunch for my love. I always enjoy checking out bento photos online and am amazed at how meticulously prepared they are, and how they look too pretty to eat! I got what was left from my paid VL (one day? two? haha)Β  and rushed to the nearest Japan Home Store for some bento paraphernalia:


Decorated the jellies with handmade stickers from Richelle and some deco tape from Frances (thanks, girls!).

The partner’s on a diet and can’t eat a lot of fried food so I made what I think is a healthy mix of savory and sweet: Panda egg with cucumber bamboo forest, herb-y steamed young corn with olive oil, orange wedges and apple with orange juice and freshly-cracked pepper for zing, and raisins as a pebbly surprise:Image

For me, almost the same thing, in a nifty ichigo bento box:


The night before that, I pretended to be Alice and had myself a wee tea party. My tea pot is smiling (because she likes washi too, apparently) and I filled her with healthy malunggay tea which I drank in my handmade stoneware cup and saucer set from Crescent Moon.

I also adore the beautiful packaging of Vanilla Cupcake Bakery! I wanted to treat myself to a cupcake after a long day at work and was so pleasantly surprised when I saw the teapot box:



Check out the scallops on that handle! Lovely.Image

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.


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


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!

Papercutting, I think I love you

I made some new papercuts!

Here’s Zaria’s Dream, with her fat kitty:


This one’s a request by Tatin, she saw my post of the fat kitty papercut and requested I make one of her chow chow. I’m a bit afraid of dogs (some childhood trauma) but her dog’s so cute and almost looks like a bear (and I love bears) so I gave it a try:


What do you think? πŸ™‚ I’m really enjoying the act of cutting paper now. I realized I still can’t cut straight lines and letters but I’ll keep on practicing. Am also reading some books and blogs about it and learning a lot! This just might be my latest obsession after rubbercut stamping, and calligraphy before that. The best thing I love about this crafty activity is that it just requires a table (I have yet to try making one at home!), a comfy chair, a cutting mat, a cutter and paper. I use plain bond paper, but I’ve also tried using paper from my sketchbook and I’ve also tried using index cards. I think I like plain bond paper the most.

I’ve read reviews of papercut artists using this: Xacto 3051 Professional Swivel Knife, and now I’m thinking of investing in one, since I have a hard time cutting curves. Anyone know where I can buy this and how much? πŸ™‚

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”:


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. πŸ™‚

Met up with a friend from fashion school and we got to know the awesome people behind the event.


Free tattoo stickers!


Here’s the first pose:
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:


Did the next drawing using a normal pencil this time:


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. πŸ™‚
Saw beautiful lampposts at BGC:


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!
‘Twas a lovely, artsycraftsy day. ❀ Happy Sunday!

Latest papercutting attempts

I’m glad that papercutting and I are now friends. It was a bit awkward when I met her a few years ago and it might have been my design which was too ambitious or my huge cutter which always accidentally cut places that shouldn’t be cut. I’m still learning a lot about what kind of cuts I enjoy making and which to avoid (I’m still struggling with letters) but I find the overall experience enjoyable this time.

Some papercuts I made:

This one’s called “Pandora’s Dream”: