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“For whatever we lose (like a you or a me)

it’s always ourselves we find in the sea”

-E.E. Cummings


I can barely remember the details of my first Ilocos trip, mostly because my memory is selective. I hadn’t enjoyed it much the first time, possibly because of the presence of too many strict teachers and unlikable classmates. Or maybe it’s because I never did enjoy high school. I was always that kid who teachers never seemed to be able to decide if I blended in the background or had a rebellious mind. In high school, I seldom got intro trouble because of this. As soon as I did a bad thing, people would instantly forget about it or think that I couldn’t have done it because of my older sisters’ reputations. It made things a bit boring to be honest. How can you even have fun breaking the rules if no one even notices?

I didn’t break any rules during our trip. No one really cared about what we did as long as we didn’t hurt ourselves. But I enjoyed my latest visit to that place. Annoying tour guides, bus delays, and classmates succumbing to food poisoning (?) aside, I’d loved it. I loved the ocean, the briny scent of the air and even the way sand clung to the insides of my shoes. It wasn’t like Halong Bay. The Philippines has more beautiful beaches and is richer in natural resources so it pains me to think on how locals don’t take time to travel within the country. But then, you can’t exactly blame them. A trip to Hongkong costs as much as a trip to Davao. I would choose Hongkong, given the chance.

But this…I hadn’t expected this. I would travel with them again–Kelsey, Anya, Khams, Jaz, and the rest. I’m not going to be dramatic and say I’d like to explore the world, but if want to travel again, it will be funner with those guys. Without the hospitals of course.



Semester Break

My first semester in college is nearly over. Well, actually, it’s over and all we have to do tomorrow is pass our requirements and the profs won’t give a fuck about us anymore as long as we come back after two weeks completely intact. Or maybe not.

All I have to do now is finish my essay for Communication Arts and my portfolio for Techniques and Visual Perception. I’ve already posted some of my earlier plates here. So here’s the rest:

Stylized Alphabet

Typography. Lyrics used is Tracy Chapman’s “Fast Car”

Plus some geeky late-night Harry Potter drawings.




More Plates

Redid my visper plate because the first one was way too dirty. I don’t remember how many shades of blue I used here. Ten or eight, maybe.

Statues. Only got an A- here because I wasn’t able to make them look like they were made of plaster.

A different set of statues drawn on pastel paper. 95/98. I think I lost three points because I used light charcoal instead of dark. Or I just drew a really bad face.

Oh school. And right after I got these two techniques plates back, I went to my blockmate’s debut and got a little drunk. It was only when I was walking around Taft, looking for my school so I could ride a bus back home did I realize I was a little intoxicated and quite lost. Fortunately, the more dominant and sober part of my brain brought me to the right direction. Lesson learned: Never drink on a Friday night and go home by yourself.

Weekend Drawings and Several Pictures from the Bedroom Wall and My Bag

WIP. Oil pastels on felt paper. Creating a scene in a ballroom.


Using a feather isn’t as easy as it looks. It took me some time before I found out the best way to control the ink is to tilt the feather sideways and not press too hard.

For my visper class. Monochromatic design using a repetition of 5-cent-sized circles. Must depict tonal values of one color. Chose red because everyone else is using blue or green. Look closely and you can see a butterfly. Turn it upside down and you see a shocked alien face.

An award given to me in our Christmas party during my sophomore year.




Things you find in my bag: bachelor of fine arts course guide, old issue of The Artist’s Magazine, this book called Pilgrim, my sketchpad featuring a drawings of a gentleman fox and a mother goose, and a box filled with a few things I’ve collected over the years.

A is for Alex DeLarge, B is for Batman, C is for Charlie McDonell, D is for Damon Albarn, E is for Edward Scissorhands, F is for Florence and the Machine, G is for Gaspard Ulliel, H is for Harry Potter, I is for Indiana Jones, J is for Joker, K is for Karen O, L is for Liam Gallagher, M is for McDonald’s, N is for Noel Gallagher, O is for Olivia Wilde, P is for Patrick Star, Q is for Quentin Tarantino, R is for Rhys Ifans, S if for Slater, T is for Timmy Turner, U is for Uncle Sam, V is for Voldemort, W is for Willy Wonka, X is for X-men, Y is for Yoko Ono, and Z is for Zach Galifianakis.

Posted on my bedroom wall: a drawing of Thom Yorke singing Lotus Flower, my nametag used for our restaurant project in fourth year, and two of a few letters I got from my high school friends.

A few of our books

From my Walking Dead comic book. Book four.

Fader, my guitar. My friend actually named it for me. I know, I know. It needs cleaning and a new e string.

Stuff I use for school and for my own personal use.

Course guide for the Advertising Design students

Yeah, pretty long title.










The Dragon Tattoo (And Techniques Class)

One of my pals asked me to design a tattoo for him so I combined a few of his favorite things to make this: patterns, dragons, and something Filipino (the carabao head). I left it uncolored because I thought it might be too complicated but his brother, the one who’s going to ink it to what available space of unadulterated skin he has left, told me that he can do it with just a few changes. They jokingly asked me if I wanted to see him tattoo it on his butt. My response was a stare so long and disturbing they laughed nervously then handed me the 150 php we agreed upon. Seeing his colorful skin made me want one, too. But the problem is, I might have someone draw Thom Yorke’s face on my wrist then regret it for the rest of my life because my grandchildren will ask me why I don’t have granddady’s face there instead. Yeah…final decisions really aren’t my thing.

My prof suggested I join this contest for BFAR where we have to make a painting/illustration of an endangered underwater species here in the Philippines. The moment Benji told us about it my brain closed off to all thoughts except octopi, my animal obsession. He said that the ones who’ll join will get exempted from two plates from either Techniques class or Visual Perception, the latter being my weakness. Patterns are addicting and all but I’m pretty lazy when measurements, proper focal points, and the like come along. My grades aren’t bad but they aren’t as high as I want them to be, especially since I’m planning to move to UP Diliman next year.

The thing is, deadline’s on September 15. Far from finals, but I predict I’ll be busy then. Also, the most advisable medium to use is paint and while I’m not shit here, I’m not Leonardo da Vinci either.

So I’m currently wondering if I should join or not. It’s been a long time since I’ve joined any art contests and I haven’t won anything since that editorial cartoon thing last year.



Anyway, A+ grades on my plates for Techniques class! Benji’s the man!

Entitled “The Lost Plate (Jonathan’s Dilemma)”. Reason for this is because when one of my blockmates returned from his bathroom break, he saw that his work was missing. No one took it so he had to make a new one. Two weeks later, right as he was handing it to Benji, an older girl from our org saw his old vellum cartolina sticking out of the platform where our tables sat. That guy probably inwardly screamed himself to death. One of the bottles looks like it’s glowing.


(Notice how dirty the sides are. We found these lying on the floor near the entrance of the room. Benji doesn’t believe in proper keeping, I think)

Entiled “Light and Skull”. That, my friends, is why most of the time, our prof lets us make the titles. Benji complimented me on this one even though I think I made a big mess of it. I would have done a cleaner job if I’d been born without the impatience. I was the first one to pass. I’m forever eager to go home and watched Adventure Time or finish reading the latest find in the book sale.

A Draft, A Doodle, and Four Random Photographs