Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Movie on a Monday Night

I haven't seen a movie in a while and yesterday I thought that I should take a few hours of leisure before I work on burning some screenprinting stencils. So I went to the nearest mall and checked what's showing. There's The Dark Knight Rises, and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Slayer. Guess which movie I ended up watching.

Well I was in the mood for a 19th-century setting with an axe-wielding and hefty version of the 16th president of the United States, and day-walking vampires. It's amusing how the film makers were able to mix them together. The story is actually from a mash-up novel written by Seth Grahame-Smith. I guess one of the reasons why I watched it is because it was co-directed by Tim Burton. 

Lincoln VS vampires? Sounds like it's meant to be humorous. But the film is actually a serious one. It may be a bit boring at the first half but there's a lot of action and cool effects towards the end. I liked it. Glad I watched it. ^_^

Now I'll see if I can watch the Dark Knight Rises also this week.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

A Day in Mandaluyong City

Yesterday I thought of getting ICC stickers for my helmets at a DTI branch in Mandaluyong City. Old helmets now must be inspected for safety standards. If the helmet still has it's standard parts intact, then an Import Commodity Clearance sticker will be issued to it.

When I got to the DTI branch at 2 PM this is what I found - people crowding around the application desk. And there's a long line to where you get your helmets inspected for the sticker. At around 3 PM, they only accepted applications and you will have to come back the next day for them to check your helmet.

I failed to remember that when something is free, expect really long lines. According to statistics, there are more motorcycles than there are cars. So there are more motorcycle owners, and riders usually have more than one helmet. Imagine all of the riders in Metro Manila applying for the free ICC stickers in only 4 branches.

From what I've heard, stickers are free until the end of July. After that, you will have to pay a total of PhP 102.50 for the sticker and processing. Some say that the MMDA will start inspecting helmets by September and would give a warning instead of a ticket if your helmet has no ICC sticker. Full implementation will start on January 2013 and riders wearing helmets without the ICC sticker will be fined.

I decided instead to soon get a new helmet that already has an ICC sticker, because all my helmets have become tight since I've gotten dreadlocks. I still have to get stickers for them though so they could be resell-able.

Anyways, so as not to make my trip to Mandaluyong City a complete waste of time, I went to Mega Mall for a snack and to check out the current exhibit at the Art Center on the 4th floor.

Unfortunately the Art Center was closed yesterday. I could hear work going on from inside, probably in preparation for an exhibit opening on the weekend.

So instead I just looked at the other galleries at the same floor.

At least I got a closer look at one of Jeff Dizon's work being displayed at the window of  Art Circle Gallery. His detailed work and unique modern expressionist style really eludes me. The artwork above is acrylic on canvas, entitled "Damsel With Nine Fishes". See more of Jeff Dizon's paintings here.

Then I remembered that my cousin Emer's office is just inside Mega Mall. He works for a telecommunications company. Luckily it was his day off yesterday and he's done with the gym when I texted him. Emer is the cousin I am closest to and I haven't seen him for like eight months. So we met up and catch up over dinner and went window shopping.

It wasn't a bad day after all. ^_^

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

In My Life (The Beatles)
by Dietmar Hermkes

This, for me, is the best instrumental version of the song In My Life by The Beatles played with an acoustic guitar by Dietmar Hermkes. He's from Berlin. I wish I could play the guitar the way he does. Really awesome!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Dreadlocks Styling

Just sharing these photos of me having fun with my dreads. So these are two of a few ways I tie up my long dreads with a scarf.

I call this my Beehive Dreads. The scarf that holds the dreads is hidden under the knitted headband.

This is my Bo No Taba (Stick Bundle) Dreads hehe. Reminds me of the headdresses of the Huli wigmen warriors of Papua New Guinea, also of  the Long-Horn Miao women.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

I'm glad that Krispy Kreme opened a branch here at Alabang Town Center. My friends and I now have another place to hangout and chat over coffee. 

But what I'm glad about most is that I have a new place to work on graphic design and online research when I don't feel like working at home. They have a long counter there facing a big window that you can look out on, so you can rest your eyes from staring at your lappy.  Also you can enjoy a small cup of brewed coffee and a doughnut for only PhP 110. Free WiFi too. Perfect for bohemians hehe.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Developing my Own Sketch Filter

I also wanted to make digital sketched portraits but the graphic pen filter and the charcoal filter of PhotoShop is not so convincing with the very uniform strokes. I found some free plug-ins from the web that turn photos to pencil sketches but they only look good when zoomed out.

I realized that if you can't find a good sketch filter, then make one. Put that Photoshop adeptness into use! So after hours of experimenting, I was able to come up with this texture, with random strokes but kinda lacking in softness though. Looks more of a pen and ink sketch than pencil. Still good. ^_^

Don't try to scroll down the image. It's just a picture hehe.

This portrait, by the way, is of Pojie Pambid. A Director in PSID (Philipine School of Interior Design) and the Editor-in-Chief of MyHome, one of my favorite interior design magazines.

I was trying to achieve a Da Vinci feel on this portrait by using an antique paper texture combined with white and brown ink color. How do you like it?

If you want a portrait just like this click here.

See more digital portraits here.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Trying Out Digital Watercolor

Aside from digitally imitating oil paintings, I've been meaning to imitate the look of watercolor paintings. This portrait of a friend of mine is my first try. Do you Pinoys think she looks familiar? Well if you've been watching Usapang De Campanilla, she's Mareciel Yao, one of the anchorwomen of DZMM TeleRadio.

The watercolor filter in PhotoShop is actually is quite good. But in order to make in more convincing, you need to add and remove some elements. Isolating the subject from the original background and adding the texture of watercolor paper does the trick. Manually placed washes of color on the background with a PS wet media brush adds to the effect. I think I can improve on it more with images of real watercolor washes. Now that's another thing to put on my to-do list.

If you also want a digital watercolor portrait, click here.

See more digital portraits here.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Me in an Art Exhibit
and Other Irregularities

So I made it to the opening of my friend's group art exhibition at Light & Space Contemporary last Saturday. The exhibit entitled "Charles Darwin, Me, and Other Irregularities" will run until August 5, 2012. 

I must say, art really is evolving. Today's world offers new media, new perspectives, and new circumstances that shaped this free-thinking generation. And four new breed of artists : Kuro, Ralph Eya, Julius Redilas and Andrei Venal, present works that manifest their unique adaptation to today's cultural climate.

Below are some snapshots of what you will find at LSC:

That's my friend Kuro telling me about one of his installation art pieces entitled "Desperate Soundtrack",  an old upright piano draped with candle drip, lit black candles, and with music coming from a speaker.

Taking a closer look at "Tawas at Barang", one a series of  giclee canvas prints by Andrei Venal.

Nice watercolor paintings of Googled pictures of dissected animals by Julius Redilas.

A performance inside a big box, viewed through a small hole, entitled "Twenty-Seven" by Ralph Eya.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

The Backwater Gospel

I think it's a good time to procrastinate (LOL) with this nine and a half minute animated film by The Animation Workshop. I really like the art in this short film and the theme is rather dark.

It's about an old town with God-fearing people. But it seems that it's death they fear the most. They go crazy when the undertaker visits their town. His presence always meant that someone's gonna die.


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

A fellow artist and friend of mine, Kuro, invited me to see a group art exhibition that he participated in with 3 other artists. The title: Charles Darwin, Me, and Other Irregularities,  and they will be featuring photography, digital art, videos, sculpture and installation. Also there will be an artistic performance, and most importantly, free beer hehehe. Entrance is free and it will take place at Light & Space Contemporary, located in West Fairview, Quezon City. Here's the Facebook event page. You'll find directions on how to get there.

I'm going, of course. I wanna see what the English naturalist, know for his theory of evolution, has to do with this art exhibition while drinking beer hehe.

Monday, July 9, 2012

with a Post About Procrastination

"How's your business?  asked a friend. "It's moving slowly", I replied. He asked why and then I paused for a moment, thinking about the reasons. There are many but instead I said laughingly, "because I'm also moving slowly."

I realize that the creation of my online store, where I will sell stuff that I've designed and made, is being delayed. I still only have 4 existing t-shirt designs some designs are waiting to be produced. I also intend to make fashion accessories and home accents. 

I've been procrastinating. And I'm procrastinating even further by thinking about the root cause of my procrastination, and much more by writing about it. Hehe. I've seen a chart on the web about why people procrastinate. (Of course, being a graphic artist, I made my own chart which took me a couple of  hours.) ^_^

Looking at this nicely done chart gave me a clear idea of why things are taking so long. I'm being a perfectionist! Hehehe ( I actually checked if my perfectionism is normal or neurotic. ) Being an artist, my perfectionism is actually a good thing. My problem is in the over-planning part. Well, I am also guilty of the other reasons for procrastination, like me taking long to decide on something; not properly managing my time; and being easily distracted. It's a good thing though, that when I procrastinate, the time is mostly used on creative or productive things. Some are little tasks that are somehow aligned to my long term goals.

The thing is, my long term goals doesn't really have a deadline. But I'm actually good with deadlines. If I always deliver on time, despite my poor time management skills, then I should set a realistic deadline for the making of my online store.

Anyways, you'll find many articles on the web about dealing with procrastination. I've read these tips from asianefficiency.com and freelancerfolder.com. Also an essay about structured procrastination by John Perry, a distinguished philosophy professor.

Understand that procrastination  has a purpose. We must all keep things balanced. So if you're also a freelancing artist whose work involves getting online, I wish you the best of luck. Hehe.

Now I better  get some work done!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

My Bohemian Fashion:
Dressed for the Dark Clouds

The rainy season is here in the Philippines and it came right on schedule. It started raining on the first day of June. In fact, it was the first storm to hit the country this year. 

So now we're on our second wet month and it has been really wet for the past few days. Rain is good for nature, yeah. But when we speak of heavy rains in the urban landscape, that means heavy traffic, puddles and floods, dirty cars, postponed events, and a lot of not-so-good things.

Not being able to wear your favorite getup is another. You wouldn't dare walk on the rain soaked streets wearing your favorite suede shoes and white jeans, would you? But I'm sure there's something in your closet that is perfect for this sad and dreary weather. For the bohemian man, there really is no excuse for not being stylish on a rainy day. ^_^