Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Today we walked down the paths of our childhood...


They were shorter than we remember! But that's OK, because we do remember.

Thanks, Kitty and Mare, for having the idea in the first place, and for taking me with you on Memory Lane.

Lots of love,

Saturday, November 7, 2009

book poem

My uncle sent me a lovely little book of book quotes! I should really scan it as it's printed on old-fashioned letter paper and has lots of tiny engraved illustrations, but really I wanted to quickly post this bit I saw on the very first page:

By Charing Cross in London Town
there runs a road of high renown,
where antique books are ranged on shelves
as dark and dusty as themselves.
And many booklovers have spent
their substance there with great content,
and vexed their wives and filled their homes
with faded prints and massive tomes.
--Norman Davey

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

new stuff!

It has been a miserable couple of months for most people all round, so I thought I'd post something cheery and brightly coloured.

What I have read/seen lately:
Robin McKinley's Sunshine - best antidote to Twilight while still being about vampires
Justice - Alex Ross's watercolours of the JLA all armored up, woo!
Hark! A Vagrant - with the trusty Wikipedia close to hand
Glee - at first I thought of it as an antidote to High School Musical (hmm...been reacting a little too much to things methinks?), but I love it in its own right. And also as a karaoke substitute.
Smart Bitches, Trashy Books - Clever ladies who love romance novels. Just because you have every book Diana Gabaldon or Victoria Holt wrote, doesn't mean you're intellectually challenged. (Cassie Edwards on the other hand...)

Here is some artwork! I like doing little A6 paintings of this kind. It was fun to do simple work with bright colours all in one go instead of overthinking everything.

I made colour copies of the paintings to put in a novelty plastic "Foto-Bag" I got at National Bookstore:

(Wow, blogger-uploaded pics are so full of arbitrary code.)

So anyway, that was fun, if a bit late. Later days! ♥

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

birthday soon!

Here is a list of things I would really like for my birthday, or sometime this month, or really any time before New Year, I'm not particular:

*koff* This is not an unsubtle hint, or really a hint of any kind. It's just that round my birthday is the only time I feel justified to sigh after quite so many things.

Pentel Brush Pen -- I have 4 cartridges and no pen! T_T
Drafting Table
Bento Box
BPAL Manila, Zarita, or Bess.
a pair of denim overalls and/or overall shorts :D
Crow quills
Japanese dinner! This at least I'm quite sure of.
DVD of Ponyo (will get the dibidi, but extras are fun!)
an extant copy of Helen DeWitt's The Last Samurai

while we're wishing...
Batman the Animated Series--seasons 2 through 4
and a bike with a basket and only one speed, i.e. not my cousin's bike
and a Leica D-Lux 4 OR a Lomo LC+A
and a pony Neil Gaiman Joseph Campbell and The Power of Myth! Or the complete Gilmore Girls. Whichever is cheaper. If only *sigh*

Actually I'd be happy with a birthday card (e- or otherwise...) ♥

Friday, July 10, 2009

more doors

Four more doors!

Thursday, July 2, 2009


I need to get a bit more diverse in illustration styles, and to that end I've been building up a series of door drawings to use as stock images for myself. Mixed success so far, but then again I've only done five.

Pen and ink and markers. I think some of the plain line drawings would go well in some kind of collage with the bird people.

Monday, June 29, 2009

The Princess Approves!

This guy is doing a Wonder Woman comic, very very soon. I can't begin to express how excited I am. So here is Diana to express it for me!


Saturday, May 30, 2009

Home Is Where The Height Is

It feels exhilarating being in a real city again, especially since we’re in a high-rise. There’s something about the altitude that opens up my head, like a fresh breeze blowing through my mind.

Can someone absorb culture by osmosis? Or do you have to be specially tuned to the cosmopolitan broadband, catching the waves of the city only if you’re already sensitised through previous exposure? Libraries and bookshops, museums, art galleries—these are trappings of civilisation, and I’ve always thought it was the mark of a civilised person to take pleasure in them. Likely this is a convenient elitism on my part, as these places are my particular haunts—I hunt them down in every city I come to, and judge the city by what I find.

Having learned to read before I ever saw a schoolroom, I can’t remember not being frustrated with my backwater surroundings, with the idea of people who saw a book as a chore—a deep, murky course filled with unpleasant swimming things, to be waded through only with an army of guides and special tools.

It was only when I was much, much older that I learned to love the outdoors of a city as much as its interiors. The joy of walking especially came late to me, but when I had discovered it, it became nearly as much of an addiction as reading, and for the same reasons. I admit I don’t love walking for its own sake—I hate marching along apace, intent on matching a certain speed or reaching a single destination at a marked time. When I go out I do it to take things in: I walk to see, and the more things I find to look at, the better. I also tend to stop or slow down when I see something interesting, which always defeats any physical benefits I might have gained from my little amble.

Public transport is another mark of a good city: I love the lofty heights of London’s double-decker buses and would often race and outmaneuver children, pregnant women and little old ladies for a front seat on the upper deck, especially on a sunny day. When you know a city well enough you can dispense with the tour buses and their pre-recorded commentaries or scripted guides, and take a visiting friend on their own tailormade (and much cheaper) guided tour: “If you keep looking left you can see the Tate Modern for two seconds. Quick, there it is! And now we’re coming up to the comics shop that I got locked into once…”

Today I come home to a city I lived in for several years and loved better than my own hometown even when I was only visiting. Manila is not a walking city, although parts of it are walkable enough on a cool day. Nor is it much of a public-transport city, unless you want to surrender all pretense of personal space on a jeepney or fork out a wad of cash to a taxi driver who will usually take you the long way round and charge you a rate that bears no resemblance to his metre reading. But it feels like home and always will, as long as it has my old haunts, my favourite bookshops…and some of my favourite people in the world.

After all, what is culture without friends to share it with? Civilisation is society, in the end.

Friday, April 17, 2009

fashion mystified

I really like being into fashion without really being in fashion. Coming from a totally different range of fandom (or to be more precise, fandoms) gives me an entirely new context. It also encourages me to appreciate another person's style without having to factor in criteria like "season x/year x", "overhyped" or "designer of the moment". (Which is not to say I don't factor in my own criteria, like "Chuck Jones" or "cyberpunk" or "fairy-tastic".)

That's why I can roll around in delight over the photographer blogger on Jak and Jil calling this photo "The Watchmen":

...without having an opinion or 122. Well actually, I suppose sheer nerdy delight at the idea of The Fashion Watchmen (quis custodiet ipsos custodes?) counts as an opinion!

A huge advantage of being an illustrator instead of a stylist is that I can happily look up to Jane Aldridge as one of my muses:

...without having her wardrobe budget or relying on eBay. Inspiration is free; see below:

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Amazon Fail, concluded...not entirely satisfactorily

Was really angry and disappointed when I found out that sales ranking had been stripped from several gay and lesbian books on Amazon over the weekend, making them harder to search for and keeping them from the list of recommendations. Most of the gay literature I own I bought from Amazon, after seeing reviews on the net. (Well, I did before I worked at the lovely store with the 30 per cent discount and the geniuses at customer orders, natürlich.)

The most current news is that it was all a terrible mistake, a matter of human error caused by someone in one of the international branches filling out the wrong field and causing the software to rate even children's books and sociological studies on homosexuality as "adult".

It has been been pointed out that it's possible the whole thing was an elaborate prank cooked up by some people who just wanted to see the Internets Fight. Some guy is even claiming responsibility for the whole thing, although these claims are easily debunked.

What still worries me is the ease with which everything snowballed, and a couple of unanswered questions, like why exactly did the Playboy porn shots collection get to keep its ranking when by ANY human- or computer-governed system of censorship it is clearly as "adult" as a book can get? Is there anything people can do (aside from keeping our temper, which I seem to have failed miserably at btw, although I don't feel I've done anything to apologise for) to keep it from happening again? And, as Richard Eoin Nash points out (in bold letters), why is it always the GLBTQ books, the queer books, the non-normative books that get caught in the glitches, the ham-fisted errors"?

We the minorities suspect why, and we don't like it at ALL. And the more frequently people fail to give us a concrete, and a complete, explanation, the more we will continue to suspect.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Amazon FAIL

Amazon Rank

amazon rank
Function: verb
Inflected Form(s): amazon ranked

1. To censor and exclude on the basis of adult content in literature (except for Playboy, Penthouse, dogfighting and graphic novels depicting incest orgies).
2. To make changes based on inconsistent applications of standards, logic and common sense.

Etymology: from 12 April 2009 removal of sales rank figures from books on Amazon.com containing sexual, erotic, romantic, gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgendered or queer content, rendering them impossible to find through basic search functions at the top of Amazon.com's website. Titles stripped of their sales rankings include "Bastard Out of Carolina," "Lady Chatterly's Lover," prominent romance novels, GLBTQ fiction novels, YA books, and narratives about gay people*.

Example of usage: "I tried to do a report on Lady Chatterly's Lover for English Lit, but my teacher amazon ranked me and I got an F on grounds that it was obscene."

*And Heather Has Two Mommies. Seriously? A children's book about same-sex parents has been rated "adult" by Amazon, while the Playboy Centerfold Collection has not?

Seriously, people. Googlebomb, boycott, spam the reviews, email, do whatever you have to. Here's an idea: Call Amazon's customer service line at 1-800-201-7575.

ETA: The LA Times picks up the Amazonfail story.

Quote: "But as troubling as the unevenness of the policy of un-ranking and de-searching certain titles might be, it's a bit beside the point. It's the action itself that is troubling: making books harder to find, or keeping them off bestseller lists on the basis of their content can't be a good idea."

Sunday, April 12, 2009

bird people (watch out for nudity!)

Have been drawing fashion models with heads made of the head, shoulders and wings of birds. Sorry for the icky webcam pics; I want to draw more before I go out and scan them in a bunch.



2. (not quite finished yet!)

Discovered that the bird people look better with some text. I've been rediscovering the joy of "found poetry"--clipping whole lines of text and making them into something like a cohesive whole. I used text clipped from Lifestyle Asia (a Philippine society magazine) and the Top Gear Philippines editorial letter.

Transcription: SKIN DEEP SOULS

a prestigious object using
a prism of styles
cargoes counterbalance
architectural motifs in shaping the new Elisia

women have another option to reduce fine lines and
worlds with a new cocktail mix

full range of makeup and skincare
with customized outfits
embodies the luxury and prestige
of the property's
free medical services.


he refuses to be satisfied.
I would have no reason to
assimilate useful methods into my own lifestyle
in which my family participates,

acquired "hobbies" like
the over-accumulation of knowledge
from grade school to college, he realized that
leaders are not
those who are underprivileged.


Let me assure you it means nothing
to have serendipity on your side.

my need to show off
a fresh look and feel
will have a higher market value
for your lady companion