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.

Holy Week Art Camp

Holy week was scheduled on the week of my birthday. I took a leave on my day and decided to paint for the rest of the holidays. I remembered that I haven’t watched most of PGW’s 5th National Convention videos on FB. So I decided to do my penance and finally watch and learn from the masters. This is one of the benefits if you join the convention – you’ll get lifetime access to the videos so you could look back and rewatch if you want to. 

I would not judge the quality of these paintings, nor compare it to the masters. I know these are my first attempts, and they should be celebrated because I tried something new. You wouldn’t always be the best on your first try. 

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Above – Frank Liao Xiao Ping Demo’s on Florals. I really liked his loose way of painting. He wanted to show the flow of the subject and not focus on the details. I tried my best – I even used masking fluid to protect the whites. I think I did good. The portrait painting is my paint along piece from Dan Macapugay’s Demo. Portraits are my weakness, I haven’t learned anatomy properly, and just relied on feeling most of the time. The face looks wonky as I wanted to paint this as soon as I can. I learned a lot with color mixing on this one. Now if you ask me what I learned, I’ll get back to you HAHA. ♥

Below – Rene Canlas’ Demo on Koi fish. This demo was 4 hours and 30 mins long. Lots of wonderful insights from veterans in this industry. But my attention span only lasted up to 2 hours. This would have been better I think if I used a larger paper to really capture all of the ripples and details.

Above – Yeye Calderon’s demo on landscapes. I learned the scratching and splattering techniques for the branches here. This was fun. Below – this photo is from a friend and I wanted to apply what I learned from Yeye’s demo here. Wasn’t really satisfied so I added gouache and pencils here.

Really happy with the results. This year was the 6th National Convention and guess what? I didn’t get to attend the demos again HAHA. Looks like I’ll be doing the same thing again next year! ♥

Daniel Smith launch at Art Caravan

Around March, PGW announced that Art Caravan now carries Daniel Smith, one of the watercolor brands that artists covet for. Their store is located in BGC, so we had to commute to get here. We had the chance to try out the watercolor sets from Daniel Smith in our table. I really loved the Jean Haines master artist set:

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We also participated in games, got to know more about the art store and the watercolor brand, ate some food (it was gooood!), got to chat with other PGW members, and managed to try out ALL of the Daniel Smith colors available. My wallet was ready for this event.

Look at all of the paints that you could swatch ♥.

And then there was a quiz bee about watercolor and Daniel Smith. I was grouped with 2 more people. We won because I am a watercolor nerd. Look at all of the goodies I got! ♥ I also won a Daniel Smith apron from their raffle, and I think that solidified their thought of how lucky I am with raffles. (I won around 4-5 last year).

I bought so much Daniel Smith paints. ♥ And then at home, it was the process of elimination for the reds. I wanted to replace some older paints with Daniel Smith alternates. I also wanted to switch up my custom palette to include colors that I could use for urban sketching (hence the Buff Titanium and Lunar Blue). I also got a Lunar Earth because I really liked the granulation of this one, and I thought this would mix well with my other paints.

So, was it worth it? Did it make me happy? Was my plan on using the custom palette for urban sketching successful? All of these questions have a yes as an answer. Will I buy more in the future? Maybe, if I had more money haha. I spent around 5k+ for 13 pcs of paints in 5ml and 15ml tubes. I hope to paint more, so I could buy more.

PGW Artworks

I tried to be more active in PGW this year. Every month, they have a prompt where you had to paint 5 subjects and post it in the PGW FB group. I tried. These are my February and March entries:

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Above – A rabbit for February. I used a new paper for this to test it out. I don’t remember the specific paper but it was a sampler pack from Canson. I didn’t liked it. Below – plum blossom on Canson 200gsm paper. Yup, still don’t like this one!

Above and Below – these are a mix of Feb to April entries. I really liked these ones. Especially the sunflower painting. ♥

Around April I stopped participating because my focus went to convention preparation. That’s it for this one!

PGW On the Spot Painting Competition

I mentioned before that PGW Convention is a whole month long event. I participated in the online on the spot still life painting competitions. It started in the morning until noon. The camera needed to be turned on, facing toward me while I’m painting.

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We were given numerous reference photos of the still life set-up. It was up to us on how will we interpret or express the composition of our artworks. I painted in portrait and focused on the leaves. What an experience. It was a continuous painting session that lasted for 3 to 4 hours. I was tired physically and mentally afterwards. But what an experience! Will definitely attend again.

PGW Convention

I wanted to write my experience of my first PGW Convention. The kick off event was held at GSIS Museo ng Sining in Manila. It happened the day before StickerCon MNL 2022, so imagine my fully booked schedule lol.

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I joined PGW on January 1, 2022 because I wanted to learn. So why not join a watercolor group? They have events every other month, and the biggest one is the month-long convention. I went there by myself, but I didn’t really mind. I bought great art materials for a discounted price, got freebies, met new people, won raffles, and learned a lot by watching the pros paint. I also joined the art exchange event. Received a bougainvillea painting from sir Manny Vailoces. A person who had a Day Pass ticket received my painting.

The most significant program that happened on that day was the artist personality test by Seeworthy. I realized that I’m a North West kind of person — and I agree 100%. Introverted, quiet, and someone who really loves organization.

I went home inspired, tired, and ready to fight the next day for Stickercon 2022. The convention continued for another month, with artist demos and live selling every other month. Was it worth it? YES!

PGW Art Tambay

I finally joined the Philippine Guild of Watercolorists last year (since its already 2023, oops!). The first event that I participated is the August PGW Art Tambay at Art Whale Maginhawa. It is a nude sketching event partnered with Sunday Nudes. It was an event with many firsts – antigen swab test, meet up with PGW, and painting a nude model.

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The order of my paintings are from the beginner up to the end. I think it is a bit obvious on how comfortable I got to painting the last one. I am not used to painting the human figure. (I paint 90% florals, 5% food & 5% fauna). This was a new and welcoming experience to PGW. Everyone was friendly! It was nice to meet everyone there. I’m excited to join future events .

Also can I just put a disclaimer here that I was NOT the nude model. Someone on IG asked if I was the model since we had similar hair. Ugh!

Art whale also had a discount for PGW members so I couldn’t resist buying some art materials for myself . I bought a Strathmore Series 400 Landscape watercolor pad and a Hahnehmuhle watercolor pad. I’ve been using the strathmore watercolor pad in future events (aka Urban Sketchers events – in future posts).

After the event, I met up with Inggo at Old Baguio Cafe so we could finally tick it off the “to eat” list. I also wanted to take reference photos of the desserts because of –Stickercon MNL 2022. More posts to come!