Patrons of the Arts – January 2024

We started 2024 with a convention last January. Inggo and I joined Patron of the Arts: Spring Beginnings held at Centris once again. Pretty proud of our full table! Looks like we’ll need 2 tables in the future, no?

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This was one of the smoothest ingress and egress con experience for us. It was quick and stress free. We were one of the early birds during ingress and we took our sweet time setting up. I brought more original paintings this time hoping that they’d find homes. I sold a few and I’m really thankful to the buyers! ♥

I also organized a stamp rally! My idea was to make a palengke-themed stamp rally so I recruited artists who have fish or produce related stickers. Those who completed our stamp will get a crochet bayong made by Inggo with all of our artist’s prizes. We had meat, fresh fish, dried fish, veggies, fruits, and more. It was so cute! I also made giant stickers again and bought fake ice as decor for it. It was a huge hit!

Our friend also made a stick normally seen in markets. I borrowed it to take a photo with my fresh fish stickers. This was also the first time that we used zipties for the acrylic boxes tied to the mesh wires. I wanted to display my postcard prints efficiently, and while it was sort of a success, it wasn’t stable enough and sometimes the prints would fall. 

Aside from the usual tilapia stickers, I made parrotfish ones. They are available in A4 and A5 size at the same price. My thought process was “who would even buy an a4 fish?!” but a lot did. They said it is a future me problem on where to stick it. Thankful as well to officemates, friends, and family who visited our booth. Some were first timers in this kind of convention, I’m glad they had fun! 

Overall it was a convention. I truly felt that we started the year right by participating this event. ♥

Rest of 2023 Works

I finally had time again to work on more blog entries. This will finally be the last 2023 entry! So, after 4 conventions last year, I decided that December will be my “rest month” before I tackle 2024. My hands were recovering at this point, and I could finally hold a brush again. It was time to get back to painting!

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The paintings above were practice pieces, from left to right – a rainbow peony on Canson XL watercolor paper. I still have a lot of this type of paper that I use for practice without feeling guilty because there’s an abundance of it; another peony on a new watercolor pad that I bought from one of the events, its an 1264 Fabriano 300gsm watercolor pad in A4 size; an A4 sized cattleya painting as a practice piece before creating the 2 ft x 2 ft painting commission. I always believe that you should do warm up paintings first before you dive into larger pieces, just to get used to painting again and practicing the color mixes.

Below, also from left to right – our server’s December art jam was a Christmas Art Trade. The one I got requested the character Zoro from One Piece + Netflix & Chill. I have no idea how to interpret this wholesomely so I did that instead; we did a bonus round of art jam for our server admin’s birthday! I messaged most of the active members to contribute to this surprise, and thankfully they joined; finishing up my 2023 commitments by finally painting this office art trade. She requested a painting of her cute pet!

I continued painting on my 1264 watercolor pad. Nothing much to say about the left and right photo as they’re still practice pieces. The middle flowers are strawberry blooms. I made these for my planner sticker sheet of strawberry goodies.

Looking at the tags of this blog is so confusing. What counts as a compilation post, when everything in my blog posts are compilations? I should have written that somewhere. Maybe I should also clean up the tags while I have the time?


My next event after Art to Cart was PlannerCon. This was StickerCon’s first event for planner and journaling enthusiasts. I applied for a half table this time and this is my real solo stint event because assistants are not allowed for my type of table.

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I was partnered with another artist for this type of table. She was really nice! I also have friends who also boothed in this event – Clair, the sisters Beatrice and Joyce / Ella and Marie, Louise, Alyanna, and many more. ♥ Inggo was also there for support – to switch with me whenever I need a break (or to shop lol). I really liked my table display that day! I added wire baskets on my mesh wires to display some of my other products – more washi tapes and my misprint postcards. The misprint postcards were just desaturated versions caused by my printer supplier’s error. Thankfully, they replaced it with the correct colors. I couldn’t sell it full price due to my pride so I did a discount basket. 

I also made giant versions of my tilapia stickers just to give away to my friends who will visit the event. One of my customers wanted to buy some of them but kept asking for a price, so I said its 100php each. She bought two! 

Huge appreciation to Inggo – whenever he wasn’t at my table, he was around the venue crocheting away, sometimes in the middle of the wide aisle lol. My friends from each aisle kept on commenting about it. He made around 4 mini clodsires that day! 

This was a pretty chill convention. I’m glad that I got to join another StickerCon event. ♥ I didn’t earn as much compared to the other conventions (but Art to Cart still was the lowest sales). But I really wanted to join another event like this that when they announced PlannerCon for 2024, I immediately joined. ♥

Maker’s Festa and Thingamajig

November – these two events happened one week apart from each other. Makers Festa was held at Gyud Food park at UP Diliman. Another discord member wanted to try selling at conventions. He’s my second con baby. He specializes in collage art, and has turned his products into prints and stickers:

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I was pleasantly surprised that Alyanna, or alfajone was physically there for Maker’s Festa. I thought she moved overseas! I bought some of her merch as well. Another seller that I found and liked was avonlii, I bought her A4 print of camellas last ATC – this time I bought her morning glory one. Makers Festa haul below.

Thingamajig was held at Tierra’s at Maginhawa. It was a small but cozy event. I wanted to return the favor to Niao because she was always there whenever I held events. Below is my small haul from the event:

I didn’t paint as much this time as my hands are still recovering. I’m pretty happy with my haul from these two events.

PGW 6th National Convention

This post is about the preparation and the exhibit itself: September was a busy month! After painting the PaperCon commission, I painted a 15″ x 15″ watercolor painting for the PGW 6th National Convention the weekend after. It was the annual open call exhibit for PGW members.

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Of course I wanted to join! I didn’t last 2022 for reasons I cannot remember anymore. And the members are starting to remember me because I kept on winning raffles. It was time to change that! The theme for the member exhibit was Lakbay+Diwang. Travel and celebrate.

My concept was pushing itself too hard, but I really wanted it to work. Below is my artist write-up that I’m very proud of:

Banaba, scientific name Lagerstroemia speciosa, is an indigenous flowering tree native to our beloved country, the Philippines. It is also known as the “Pride of India” or “crepe myrtle” in other parts of Southeast Asia. The Philippines, as a megadiverse country, has an abundance of flora and fauna—natural wonders that I believe are needed to be represented more in our medium. This is aligned with the advocacy of Ms. Bing Famoso Tac-an, founder and current head of the Philippine Botanical Art Society, which I am also a proud member of. This group aims to showcase endemic plants of the Philippines through visual arts, specifically via botanical art painting. Our group hopes to educate and create awareness about the conservation of these indigenous flora since most of them are now endangered.
I chose Banaba as the focal point of my composition because it was one of the first flowers I encountered outside when it was safer to go out during the pandemic. I wanted to show through my work that we have a myriad of beautiful endemic plants which can be subjects to choose from aside from the more popular but foreign flower subjects like peonies, roses, sunflowers, etc. My piece is inspired by the botanical art style with a white background, a requirement for the Philippine Botanical Art Society as well as its international counterparts for portraying such works, with the aspiration of scientific accuracy to the best of my abilities.
Indeed, our local endemic fauna—Katmon, Waling-waling, Tayabak, Hoya, and, of course, Banaba (but ironically, not Calachuchi and even our own national flower, Sampaguita), among others—must be celebrated. Through painting these as subjects, one can inspire and instill the knowledge that one must simply look around, even in our urbanized Metro Manila, near our homes we live in, and all round our own barangays, to see that such beauty exists around us. What more can we see and appreciate once we travel around our own beautiful Philippines.

I was really satisfied with the details. Look at those folds! ♥ The convention kick off was also the day of the exhibit opening. I attended the convention kick off first in the morning. Inggo waited somewhere in Estancia. During the exhibit opening, my Ragnarok friends from wayyyyyyyy back came and visited! We had dinner afterwards and reminisced about the good old days.

I didn’t have any time to retrieve this painting for egress so I donated it to PGW. I sort of miss it, but I can make another one anyway! I loved the experience of being part of this community. I hope I could be a bit more active this 2024.

Art to Cart

What can I say about Art to Cart?

Days after the relatively successful Patrons of the Arts, another new organizer popped up from the convention gossip grapevine. We were curious and attended their presentation. Impressed, we signed up. It was another gamble with a new organizer that we could afford, so why not? Their first event happened around mid-October.

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Above photo is our Day 1 set-up. Let me just say that I got injured on the first day of the event. It was so bad that I couldn’t hold a pen or draw for a month. I had a wrist brace most of the time. Lesson learned – don’t run, let people wait for you.

The organizers were alright? We were forgiving because it was their first art convention. We were impressed with the writeups they made of us that was obviously well researched and well-written. On the day itself however they had a lot of mishaps. The floor plan and map in particular. Artist aisles were too narrow (they fixed it on day 2). The program and host was boring.

One good thing about this event is that Inggo sold a lot of his works on this event. He even had a fan who bought A LOT of eevee merch. Super happy for him! We also had a stamp rally with our server members as well – where supportive server members completed the stamp rally lol.

This was also my first convention baby – or con bb Ret’s first event. She’s a server member as well, and she said that she has always wanted to join a convention but never had the courage to or doesn’t know where to start. I offered to help her from application, financial help, merch production, up until ingress and even lent her our extra table displays. I’m really proud of her as well! I made her pair with Shine, one of the January Maker PH girls, on a full table so she could be with someone who has experience with conventions. I’m glad that they matched personally. The photo below is a jeepney sign custom made by one of the server members. Its our informal nickname to fellow members. I loved it so much I had one made for Inggo and I for future conventions. 

Above is my humble haul from Art of Cart. This was my lowest selling convention of 2023, but I wasn’t in the red. I had a good time hanging out with my friends. One of the notable conversations during the event was with a customer who complimented me – “Your works should be in an exhibit”. Me, flexing, “Oh yes, I have an exhibit with the Philippine Guild of Watercolorists at Estancia Mall next week”.

And that is the next blog post! ♥

PaperCon – Commission

One of the most surprising experience during PaperCon was one of my customers wanted to commission me for a painting. I didn’t offer A4 prints of my works, but I’m planning on making small amounts for the next one this 2024. At first, she wanted it A4 size, then A3, and after PaperCon she wanted a 2 feet x 2 feet watercolor painting of cattleyas.

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I rarely take commissions because I’m not fond of doing them. I always offer a higher price for these. But she accepted my rates, so my weekend was spent making the painting. My usual commission process now is at follows:

  • Get all the info I need to create sketches. Offer 1 to 2 concept sketches before I start on the actual piece. Explain my materials – paper quality, watercolor quality, hence my prices. For commissions, I always use Arches 100% cotton 300gsm paper and artist grade watercolors. Always the best quality for client work.
  • After approval, request for 50% down payment before start of work. Always do this to protect yourself.
  • Explain my process to the client – 2 weeks lead time of work, progress photos will be sent per day, and delivery will be shouldered by buyer.

After that I start prepping my work area. I don’t have a large table at home, so I use our dining table when I do bigger paintings. That means cleaning the dining table and trying to remove as much oil on the surface as possible. After that I lay my watercolor paper, measure it to size using a T-square and cut the paper. Then we sketch.

If I’m finally happy with the sketch, it’s time to start painting. It usually takes me a day or two to completely be satisfied with a painting. I finish the painting on day one, and check another day with fresh eyes to see if it still needs improvements. The second day is where I take photos or scan, prep the painting for shipping, and informing the client that its done.

Really happy with this piece! I hope the client is happy as well.♥

PaperCon 2023

PaperCon was held last September 9 at Centris. It was technically my first time as a solo artist, but Inggo was there with me as my assistant. ♥ Look at my full table! It’s so cute!

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I felt pretty proud of my table set-up. We upgraded a lot of things after POTA July: laminated price tags for easier visibility, mesh wires so we could take advantage of height, a printed table cloth, more grass tiles, and more acrylic trays. It looked so neat! But look at the chaos the night before, packing all of these:

I also made newer business cards with two different designs. My previous one was too small and was not a standard size. This one is beautiful and the art speaks for itself. I also had a stamp made – the photo below was what they had made without my instagram handle. I sent some feedback and the supplier replaced the stamp with the correct request. The passport photo on the left is a new thing for PaperCon. It was a small booklet for customers and sellers, where they could collect stamps from all the artists in the event. I had a lot of fun asking for stamps from everyone!

I’m really thankful for this event. Even though the venue was scorching hot that day, we didn’t really mind it because there were a lot of people! It was also really nice to see some previous PaperCon kapitbahays and other artists. It felt like a post-pandemic reunion of sorts.

Really thankful as well to my friends who came and visited the event – USK QC people, POTA friends, officemates, discord friends, etc. ♥ Inggo also made me an orchid crochet headband because I requested one for this event hehe. One customer also wanted to commission me for a painting – which is what my next blog post will be about!

And lastly, I kept being sentimental about this one, it really means a lot to me that I can finally stand on my own as an artist. I’ve been boothing since 2017, and look at all of my products now!

PaperCon prep and products

August last year was my prep time for PaperCon that was held last September 9. I wanted to create lots of new products because it was PaperCon. It was a big deal for me to return to this event as a solo artist. So I made more paper products – specifically notepads, bookmarks, and new stickers.

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First of all the peony above, I had no idea where to put in my older posts so I put it here. This was one of the newer peony artworks that I did for my new set of stickers – 3″x 3″ sized sticker samplers! I wanted a sticker sheet that’s a midrange price, for those who doesn’t want an individual sticker but doesn’t want to spend on the bigger sticker sheet. I made 5 designs of these – rose, peony, hydrangea, orchid, and sunflower.

I had the idea of making bookmarks during Patrons of the Arts – where I saw that some art prints are laminated to achieve a glossy effect. So I thought, maybe I should do bookmarks? These did really well during my conventions last year – but I won’t restock them again this year because I don’t really have space for them in my table.

Now, notepads! It’s PaperCon, notepads are paper, so they should probably sell like hotcakes right? Well, not really! With their high production cost and bulkiness, I felt that I probably shouldn’t reproduce them anymore. It was a fun experience though!

Now my sticker sheets, my bread and butter during conventions. I added a new design- the sunflowers sticker sheet so they would finally total to 10 designs. I’m pretty proud of this set! Looking back now, I’m pretty impressed with the products I’ve produced just for this con. Next up will be the event itself!

Urban Sketchers Kyusi – UP Diliman Sketchcrawl

I’ve added another tag for all Urban Sketcher posts with USK QC. We’ve been active with the QC chapter since we also live in this city. So just in case we get to join other chapters, we could differentiate it with another tag. Anyway! August last year was USK QC’s UP Diliman Sketch crawl. This time around I invited my discord friends with me!

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I already forgot the location of where we sketched but its near sunken garden. Inggo was there as a guide for us just in case we’d get lost. We were with Hannah, Mico, Bea and her friend Ryzza. Bea is from Laguna and for some reason wanted to join us here in Quezon City.

I finally brought my foldable stool this time! And I finally used a bigger sized paper. This is a Hahnemuhle paper – around 9″ x 12″. I wanted to paint the tree and the field. It was hard because all you could see are greens and browns. But I loved mixing my own greens! It rained so the USK QC people took shelter under the film building. Another discord friend of ours also joined us here – he was having lunch near Area 2 and remembered that we were here for the event. After the latag session, we went to Friuli at Maginhawa so they could try it out.

I found it funny that the USK QC admin Nadj thought that our group was a bunch of tourists walking around UP Diliman but then realized we were one of them. Another group commented that we looked like a dance troupe because we all wore black.

It was a fun experience. I’m glad that more discord friends are interested in joining USK QC events. ♥