BGC Passion Fest 2015: The Steady Rise of Philippine Art

This is great news.

People have been getting more and more into arts and crafts lately, with the rise of doodling and coloring books for adults as forms of art and expression to thank partly for it. This is good news for Filipino artists and the rest of humanity. Goodness knows we need more positivity and any kind of empowering form of self- expression in our lives.

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The BGC Art Mart event held seasonally is one great way of showcasing Filipino craftsmanship and I am truly honored to finally be a part of it. I’ve been hearing and reading about BGC Art Mart for such a long time now that it has become one of my goals to set up my own booth and meet people who share the same passion and to finally see my dream happen feels phenomenal.12319223_1064604633559710_1756201782_n

My sister helped me set everything up and I’m very thankful for her help! I couldn’t have done it without her.

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We chose an area that had a great view and feel of that Sunday at BGC vibe. It was great. Not so much during the afternoon though when the sun threatened to burn the backs of your legs. People were hesitant to pass by our area when the sun was at its hottest so I might choose another area to set my booth up next time.

12309133_1064606203559553_1287080416_nThat’s me, my friend Andrea and sister Karla behind the table as onlookers were checking out my booth.

12309088_1064604693559704_1871866101_nThis may look weird but really I thought I had to put it up! I felt like some of the other customers (especially the younger ones) were so shy that they would give my booth a really quick look, buy prints and timidly run off! I could feel some of them wanting to check out my art prints a bit longer which I understand since as an art enthusiast, I have the tendency to look at artworks a bit longer than necessary because I like to appreciate and observe every detail on the artwork.

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One of the main reasons why I was so excited about going to BGC was because of the other merchants! I recognized some of them because they were famous on Instagram and Facebook so really, just imagine being with people you look up to!

12309333_1064606420226198_760322991_nI was soooo ecstatic to see my name on this banner!

Since I had my sister with me I asked her to man the booth for a while and took this as a chance to roam around and take pictures of the other merchants’ booths which I was extremely excited to do. DSCN1214

Our booth neighbor who had cute and edgy prints to offer, N+G. Check them out!

DSCN1215Our other neighbor, Flow! Amazing accessories. It’s art you can wear.

DSCN1216Pretty bracelets from the booth of San Pedro Calungsod Parish

DSCN1217Booth of Gerome Soriano- for photographers looking for inspiration

DSCN1219MAIKala Wire Concepts booth. I had a bookmark custom- made by them for 140 pesos

DSCN1221How amazing is this piece by Eman Sia?

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DSCN1223“Crafted and sculpted one piece at a time” Handmade by Mae Chan

DSCN1225The works of one of the most enthusiastic artists that I know of, Sir Lorenzo Gabutina!

DSCN1226I bought one of their artsy pouches. I didn’t take a picture of it because I’m going to give it as a gift to a friend!

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Yung… KWAN!

DSCN1229I saw Sha Erandio’s art when I first visited Escolta and thought “Hey maybe I can do this too!” So I had to thank her for fueling that thought and for inspiring me in a way.

DSCN1232SQOOiD!

DSCN1233Burnwater Design Studios

DSCN1234A close up on a drawing that caught my attention- also from Burnwater

DSCN1238Works of Camille Chua- absolutely stunning!

DSCN1242From Milk Co Ph- Those pouches are hand- painted by the way. Awesome, I know.

DSCN1243The wonderfully inspiring works of Cheryl Owen. I’ve been seeing her works around and to see them as actual prints is such a delight.

DSCN1245Cut the Scrap!

DSCN1246Really cool shirts from The 175

DSCN1248Roll up cases from Tweed and Twine that I should’ve bought!! 😦

DSCN1250Ella Lama’s booth partially featuring the artist herself 😀

DSCN1253Punch Crafts! I bought a cord holder from them in Escolta!

DSCN1254Tansan crafts from Hodge Podge!

12325217_1064604710226369_1376914924_n12319806_1064606573559516_2105028090_nWhen the lights turned on, there was a collective oooh and aah and the excitement was palpable. The night was alive.12319388_1064604520226388_156316137_n12305545_1064604493559724_372561082_nI had seen a lot of people look at my art like this and I am really honored to have shared even a brief connection with them through my art. One of the main reasons why I continue making art is because I want to inspire people even in as small a way as a fellow artist who has felt a tingle of inspiration just by seeing my artworks. 12306029_1064604906893016_215929110_nA picture with two veteran artists!

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I was in BGC Art Mart for 12 hours! I was tired at the end of the day but it was the kind of exhaustion that I welcomed. I ran out of business cards and some of my prints even got sold out! I had such a great time during those 12 hours and made memories that I wish to never forget.

If you’d like to know more about the other merchants follow them on their social media sites (or Google them :D)!DSCN1274

And remember: Always support local!

A Post on What It Feels Like to be in Escolta Saturday Future Market

The day started early for me but for a Saturday, it’s not an uncommon thing (no thanks to having work on Saturdays). I braved the thought of going to Escolta on my own, carrying with me everything that I would be laying down and exhibiting for everyone to see and purchase.

There wasn’t a lot of products that I prepared because I had low expectations; I was new and very unheard of. I would describe my works as having an ethereal yet dark and flawed feel, the kind that most people aren’t into. The serious tone was not something that I expected others to appreciate, as opposed to more cheerful and bright art pieces.

So on I went with three separate bags slung onto my shoulders and the kind of apprehension that you feel when you’re going to unfamiliar territory, like a house party in which people you don’t know will be going. I rode a van to Quaipo, which took 40 minutes and that was because the roads were especially clear of any signs of traffic. In Quiapo, I rode a tricycle going to Escolta and paid 50 pesos. This was the second time that I’ve gone to Escolta this way and both times, the drivers did not know where the First United Building was. Yesterday was also the second time the streets of Manila intimidated me, with its interconnected streets and tall (and rather outstandingly designed) buildings. (For first Escolta visit, click here.)

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When I got there I thought I would be the only one left that had not set up a booth but apparently according to co-merchant and booth neighbor from Shape Happens, most merchants know that the influx of visitors and buyers rush in at around lunch time and so they set up later than 9 AM. Luckily though I was there earlier and had set up my space early because the first person to buy an art print went there and bought my Girl with Head Dress print at around 9, saying that she saw my work posted on Woman, Create on Instagram! She even asked me to sign which was a first for me. (Thanks, Denise! I’ll never forget you as my first buyer! 😀 )

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At around 10, people were starting to come in and check out the booths whereas I was still alone manning my booth and waiting for my darling friend, Steph, to come and join me because 1) I lack the math skillz for giving out change and computing the total price 2) I also want to check out each booth 3) the moral support would be nice 🙂

People came and went; Some bought pieces, others ogled as their eyes darted from my booth to the next. There were people who kept passing by the booth and looking as if they really want to look a bit longer. If you’re reading this and you happen to see me in another event, please know that it is absolutely OK to stare at anything you see in my booth. It’s cool. We’re cool.

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Steph and I took turns making rounds and buying things that we liked. We even bought the 3 for 100 pesos bracelets from Teacup Ideas who was situated right next to us! We also bought leather cord holders (P60) from Punch Crafts bearing the letters “A” and “S”, one for me and Steph! I wanted to start wearing a stack of bracelets so I bought another one from some friendly folks who also sell the most wonderfully creative pipes and hand- crafted bracelets. Unfortunately, I failed to get their name!

Here are some pictures from the Saturday Market x Future Market scene:

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By the end of the day, I felt immensely accomplished and proud of what happened. I went home exhausted but I’ve never been so happy about it. I met and shook hands with so many talented people and to be somewhat a part of their lives is an honor. To receive such wonderful support makes me feel more inspired to draw and make art. Thanks to the Escolta Saturday Future Market for giving me this experience!!

For more information on the Saturday Market x Future Market held in Escolta, you can visit this link.

 

A First For Me: My Society6 Shop!

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Society6.com/Ayeza

As an artist, it feels wonderful when someone tells me they admire my works and take inspiration from them. When I was just starting out, I had the great fortune of being in a circle of friends who liked to remind me that I was an inspiration to them. Nothing could have been more fulfilling.

But as all art enthusiasts/ artists probably know, it can be hard to keep the motivation going sometimes. One day I’m all fired up and bursting with ideas, the next I look at what I’ve done and ask myself, “What do I even do this for?”  There are many days when I feel like I’m not good enough and it’s a struggle to get out of that kind of mentality.

Motivation is like riding a bicycle on an endless road. The only way that you can get it to stand and take you where you want to go  is to keep going, keep pedaling. These days, I still struggle from the fear of disappointing myself in the end but I remind myself that in this journey, there is no end. It’s an endless road and I have to keep up.

Two years after I was initially drawn to art, I am slowly working my way towards my dream. I’ve decided to take my passion to the next level and establish a shop. I can’t do that independently at the moment so I made a Society6 page which would hopefully pave the way for bigger things.

If you would like to support my art, click here. Products include Art Prints, Wall Clocks, Canvass Prints, Iphone/ Ipad/ Ipod Cases, Laptop Skins and Stationery Cards. It would mean the world to me if you liked or promoted my art and in turn, I will give you the greatest virtual hug ever and all my gratitude.

Have a good one!

Escolta Art Market: The place of the Free Spirit and Creative

It was pure madness yesterday. After work, that is.

It was peaceful in the office; I sat, I waited for the hours to go by and I stared at the computer. You know, the usual flow of activity in an office. Earlier that day I would’ve  never foreseen myself rain- drenched and excited about stickers. We’ll get to that later.

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It was 12:40 pm when Nel and I left for Megamall to have lunch. We were both craving for comfort foods to wash away a week’s worth of stress from self-doubt, anger, anxiety and betrayal. You know, the usual week in the lives of 21 year-old yuppies.  And off we went to Sbarro’s in search of comfort. I got a slice of White pizza while Nel got Baked Ziti. To top it off we had Super Cocoa from Chatime. Everything was good.

It was around 3 pm when we finished lunch (and talking) and so we hurried off to the FX terminal and rode a van going to Quiapo so we could drop by the Escolta Art Market before it closed. We had absolutely no idea how to get there which was a shame since just a little over a year ago we used to go to a school a few minutes away from Escolta.

The weather these past few weeks has been really weird. It can go from strikingly hot and bright to downright heavy pouring rain. Yesterday was no different.  It was hot and humid but  the smell of rain lingered throughout the day.

In Quiapo, we rode a tricycle to Escolta  but I guess the Art Fair wasn’t a popular activity to some people in Manila as even the driver himself didn’t know where it was. We paid 80 pesos for a ride that could have lasted 8 minutes had he known where it was. but Alas, we can’t always have what we want. #hugot

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When we got there, we didn’t really expect it to look so…  low-key. It seemed like an abandoned space wherein random people came and went to see random products laid out on little propped up tables.  It wasn’t the products that caught my interest as much as the people who went there did. Escolta was a place where creativity hit you hard on the face and passion serenaded you. It was amazing how dedicated people can be. And brave, too. I always think that it takes courage to pursue your dreams. Or art for that matter.

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Nel and I went to each table to check out the different products. Most of what we saw were stickers. One vendor  even had Hugot lines on stickers and Nel got particularly excited about a sticker of  John Lloyd  amid crying over Basha.

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Most of the goods were laid out on the floor as there were too many of them. There were plenty of curious things to ogle at and I like ogling so if you were there and you saw me, I was probably always bending over something. It’s hard to ogle, though, when you bring a friend with you who’s constantly looking for the next best thing and easily loses interest. When that happens, I tend to ask a lot if they’re okay because they seem disinterested whereas I’m just full of wonder. In short, bring a friend who likes to ogle too.

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I bought a tote bag from Nulu!

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Post cards were also a thing in Escolta as you would see them aplenty. I didn’t buy one though because I didn’t have anyone to send them to. Or should I have sent one to myself?

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Such a small space and yet there were so many interesting things and people!  What is even cooler is that all those people in there had one thing they shared which was their love for art. In the end, where it was held didn’t matter all too much.

How we got home is  story of a different kind. I’ve forgotten how extreme a 10-minute walk in the streets of Manila is for a chill personal space- loving person like me. We should’ve used Grabtaxi instead. Seriously, what were we thinking?

I hope you had a wonderful Saturday this week. Escolta, I’m coming for you next month!

Please Let Me In

I  may not know what your hands have touched
I  may not know what you think of before you go to sleep
or the things you’ve seen
or the thoughts you’ve had whenever you sat alone in parks just staring at passing faces
I may not know a million things I want to know
Like the moments you’ve shared with your almost lovers
And the number of puzzle pieces you’ve put together
And the times your breath got caught because of a beautiful line
And the poems you’ve memorized and forgotten
Like the answers to your questions about love, life and happiness
On why we exist
On what our purpose is
On what you think about me and how you’ll think about me after you know
That you’re the only thing I’m grateful for at the moment
And your thoughts when you maybe hopefully accidentally read these words
I may not know a million things and I may never know a million things
But I hope to know what makes you because that’s enough.

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Artwork shown above is by me. I used watercolor paper hence the texture and pencils.. 😀

Blue Moon

Lonely as a wandering soul with no home

Unprotected by the warmth of another heart

Like a lone piece on a chessboard

Gliding from one place to the next

Lost and desolate,

She waits for the moon every night

With the hope that seeing something as lovely and beautiful

yet so distant and solitary

Can ease a heart that feels

as lonely and distant as a silver orb on dark waters.

Behind the Scenes: Lia’s Cakes in Season

Probably my most inspiring feature yet, the story behind Lia’s Cakes in Season’s establishment surely made me feel a bit more hopeful about things (like the future, maybe). The owner of the famous cake shop was once a clueless kid who had no idea of what he wanted to be. He was expected to pursue a career that he didn’t want but he tried to make his own path, hopeful that it would lead him to becoming a person that he’d always wanted to be. Not even three years in in college, he failed in his attempt to build his future.

Then, he tried again. Along the way he faced obstacles and countless bumps that probably made him lose hope at times, but the fact that he didn’t abandon the path that he was making was truly inspiring. In the middle of the path came the idea of his now popular shop, Lia’s Cakes in Season.

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A slice of the famous avocado cake

When we went there, we were met by a large display of cakes which looked as good as they tasted. We learned afterwards that the ingredients used in making the cake were fresh and if they somehow messed it up, they wouldn’t sell it anymore. That was how seriously they took quality.

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I don’t think I would ever forget the smell of the avocado cake. I remember how eager I was to eat the cake while I hovered over for a close up shot. I’d probably go back again just to sniff the heck out of it. Well, that sounded weird 😀

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It makes me think of how humbling it must be to fail and feel so lost sometimes. I think that one good thing about failing is it keeps us grounded; it reminds us that we’re human and our capabilities can sometimes be lacking. However, the act of keeping on and moving forward is the true inspiration.

When was the last time you tried something new? If you’ve never had avocado cakes before then now is a good time to visit Lia’s Cakes in Season. Give them a like on their Facebook page and see what other cakes and delectable treats they offer.

Also, if you’d like to see my full review of Lia’s Cakes in Season (and their scrumptious avocado cake) click HERE 😀