October 01, 2013

Portraits of a Man

For Rico, the quiet amusement of my life 
This is a portrait of my husband, Rico. I see him everyday not noticing the constant yet tiny changes that happen in our daily lives. In this portrait series- I love how he steadily gazes  into the not so distant future, a testament of his personality. His mind might wander, but his heart is still. The stillness in this photo echo his quiet confidence. 

Choose a monochromatic photo. Include drama if possible. 
Look at contrast and tonal values

The simplest lines say the most.

Your life is a gift to me and our family. You inspire me to keep moving forward. Looking forward to seeing you grow old and may I continue to capture it for the rest of our lives.  Happy Birthday!

August 01, 2013

When Grace is Gone

Boxes are very symbolic for its simple shape but the scope of meaning ranges  from opposite ends. It can feel like opening a treasure box or peering into a coffin box. 

Isn't this what you call life's greatest paradox?

Maybe that is why our lives can fit into a box. Or worse, we put ourselves in the comfort of our boxes in fear of our fragile hearts breaking. Until one day our hearts stop beating and our time is up. 

Piecing together this project brought me in between the spaces of emptiness and fullness and I began to ask myself - How can I  fill a box  with meaning and value? Realizing that death wont always be on vacation, this project has shed light to my personal fears of lovingly living my life as an individual- (1) to live joyfully without hesitation (2) to do meaningful work that contributes to growth; (3) to gracefully dance with life cycles.    

Ironically, the very thought of this fear is also what encourages me to find my own treasure chest. 

I hope you find yours too.

Slugging It!

I've been slow and sluggish when it comes to my art practice and was (admittedly) close to abandoning this little project I've started. When the longing to start again persists, I would ask myself- what for?  

Luckily, Coursera opened up an Introduction to Art class and I was reeling with happiness. This was a chance to continue to grow my interest in Art. The experience of just being able to create something from fragments of ideas opened a new avenue for me to explore.  I realized that authentic self expression is something that  I personally value and would like to playfully pursue until the end of my days.   

There's so much in me that wants to share and create. It feels like a renewal of passion. For me, the practice of art is a full expression of faith. It tests my  persistence to see through clouded reflections and find clarity. 

No matter how slow or sticky, I'll keep slugging through the path in hopes to reach a higher path.   

May 27, 2013

Je ne sais quoi...

Fitzgerald, my best friend Nona and Paris to rekindle this blog. Reading his short autobiography and I am amused with his thoughts for the next generation, living on nothing, flappers that turn into mothers and all that jazz. 

Fitzgerald's thoughts on Americans living in France... 

"The trouble with most Americans in France," he remarked sonorously , "is that they won't lead a real French life. They hang around the big hotels and exchange opinions fresh from the States." 

"I know," she agreed. That's exactly what it said in the New York Times this morning."   

How to Live on Practically Nothing a Year (Woman's Home Companion, July 1924) 

Fitzgerald's thoughts on Motherhood...

So her life went on as it had gone on before. As she grew older her amusements changed, but she grew old slowly. The strange part of it is that the children think of her as a person, not as a "mother" who has to be written to once a fortnight and who will excuse their most intolerable shortcomings.   

Imagination and a Few Mothers (Ladies Home Journal, June 1923) 

Fitzgerald's thoughts for the future...

And when the time comes, as come it will, may I have the justice and the sense to say: "Good luck to you and good bye, for I owned this world once, but I own it no longer. Go your way now strenuously into the fight, and leave me in peace, among all the warm wrong things that I have loved, for I am old, and my work is done."   

Wait 'Till You Have Children of Your Own (Women's Home Companion, July 1924) 


To Nona, Thanks for the book. We're not done being conversational whores just yet. I miss you. xoxo 

May 08, 2012

"Uhm, Where was I?"

Err, I know that this space has been neglected for months now but I've never quit on the journey. Let's just say I've been on hiatus and have been gathering strength to make way for the changes in my life. It's a bit challenging to pick up where I've left off especially if I'm introducing a new chapter to my evolving story but I believe it is essential to continue despite the pauses. Uhm, so where was I? (Aside from being in the midst of my rambling thoughts...) 

To begin, Ernest Hemingway proposes to "Write the truest  sentence that you know."  Okay, let's try this... mine would be...

"Oh sh*t, it's time to grow up- I'm going to become a mom." 

That's after seeing the pregnancy test 6 months ago. My husband and I knew we wanted and hoped for this to happen. We figured we were ready to move towards the next stage of our married life. It was about time that we try our luck in starting a family. We couldn't be "Kiddults" forever, could we? It's just that when it did happen, I was suddenly confronted with the reality that life is indeed going to be different. To be honest, nothing really prepares you for this kind of awakening.

I've been warned that the start of pregnancy is always the toughest. From morning sickness to the attack of hormones (or should I say HORRORmones), I was definitely feeling the initial punches of transofrmation. I suppose nature was telling me to toughen up for this new role. The second trimester proved to be kinder and has taught me to extend myself. To nurture growth, I have to let nature take its course and enjoy the process of change. Growing up may not be the easiest thing to go through but it has it's rewards of allowing yourself to flourish one day at a time. Pregnancy has reminded me that life is a continuos practice of faith- faith in yourself, faith in others, faith in science, faith in love, faith in a higher being. The practice of faith gave me the confidence to face uncertainty with compassion instead of fear.

Now that we're preparing ourselves to become parents, I am reminded of what my sister in law, Rina would say  that passion has to have a direction. Having a baby has become a compass that has helped us navigate our lives towards our true norths. We still have our individual dreams to pursue but now there's more reason to unify these dreams and to help each other take action. For us to become good parents, we also have to come fully alive as individuals. A happy husband and a happy wife makes a happy home. It's a simple dream that's definitely worth pursuing. 

December 31, 2011

Start Bright

Star light, Star bright...  
The first star I see tonight
 I wish I may, I wish I might
 Have the wish I wish tonight. 

I wish I may have all the might
To make my wishes come to light
I wish I may, I wish I might
Have the courage to always start bright

Here's to turning chapters and evolving stories. May we continue to live out the lives that we choose to create. Hurray, it's not the end of the of the world. Happy New Beginning! I hope all your dreams do come true! It's time to make a wish! :) 

November 28, 2011

Inside the Animal Farm

Farming has been on my mind. These pictures made me imagine George Orwell's classic novel Animal Farm. Trying to get into the mood to get down and dirty while working on the nitty gritty. Good start for the week and a free day in between too. Yahoo! 

"Man is the only creature that consumes without producing. He does not give milk, he does not lay eggs, he is too weak to pull the plough, he cannot run fast enough to catch rabbits. Yet he is lord of all the animals. He sets them to work, he gives back to them the bare minimum that will prevent them from starving, and the rest he keeps for himself."
- George Orwell, Animal Farm, Ch. 1
"The animals were happy as they had never conceived it possible to be. Every mouthful of food was an acute positive pleasure, now that it was truly their own food, produced by themselves and for themselves, not doled out to them by a grudging master."
- George Orwell, Animal Farm, Ch. 3

"No one believes more firmly than Comrade Napoleon that all animals are equal. He would be only too happy to let you make your decisions for yourselves. But sometimes you might make the wrong decisions, comrades, and then where should we be?"
- George Orwell, Animal Farm, Ch. 5

"All that year the animals worked like slaves. But they were happy in their work; they grudged no effort or sacrifice, well aware that everything they did was for the benefit of themselves and those of their kind who would come after them, and not for a pack of idle, thieving human beings."
- George Orwell, Animal Farm, Ch. 6

"If she herself had had any picture of the future, it had been of a society of animals set free from hunger and the whip, all equal, each working according to his capacity, the strong protecting the weak."
- George Orwell, Animal Farm, Ch. 7

"Besides, in those days they had been slaves and now they were free, and that made all the difference, as Squealer did not fail to point out."
- George Orwell, Animal Farm, Ch. 9 
"Napoleon had denounced such ideas as contrary to the spirit of Animalism. The truest happiness, he said, lay in working hard and living frugally."
- George Orwell, Animal Farm, Ch. 10 
*Photos were taken at Costales Nature Farm (May 2011)