Creative Block and Renewal

The latter part of my 2016 was so jam-packed, I forgot what RELAX even means anymore.

Seriously though, it was so chaotic that I even missed putting up a review for our host in HK during the 14-day period Airbnb provides for their users, which bothers me terribly, but will probably just save that for a separate post.

So going back, when all the trips, adventures and all the holiday hoopla finally died down, I realized my body must have missed bumming around, writing, playing with watercolors, brushes, GIMP and all that shizz. That’s because for the last 5 days (January 1st not included), I have been doing nothing but catching up on some blogging and tenenenenen…

Designing!

Yeah, well, no biggie right? Well, it is for me!

You see, there were times when I silently panic because I thought I’m losing touch with meee artsy soul. It gets worse because sometimes I feel like I don’t want anything to do with art altogether. Could it be what they call the dreaded Creative Block? I’m not so sure about that, but fortunately, I realized soon enough that I could never ever get tired of ART.

ART is one of the things on earth that makes me feel alive. When God brought me to life, He must have breathed a multitude of rainbows, unicorns and stars into me, much like the sparkly stuff you vomit on Snapchat, except that it’s the other way around. On a serious note, we all grew up surrounded by our Father’s majestic creations and I with my papa’s work, his passion and creativity, so I blame it all on those why art definitely runs through my veins now, and why I know I could never ever get tired of it.

So after climbing mountains, doing touristy stuff in a foreign land, downing heaps of Christmas sweets and then washing tons of holiday dishes, not to mention partying with the girlfriends and then mourning for a grandfather 2 days after, my body must have snapped because my hand just involuntarily grabbed a brush and started creating art once again!

If that was indeed creative block that I went through, then I’m glad I snapped out of it, all thanks to the inspiration I found throughout my [mis]adventures!

I looked it up and found out that creative block can be resolved by a change in the environment or a break from the routine, facts that aren’t new to us, and techniques that are undeniably effective. Two of the tips designer and writer, Tom May listed were (see the entire list HERE):

  • Don’t be afraid to step away
    • Completely open briefs can be the worst for causing creative block. Try to distance yourself from the project; take a break and come back to it with a clear head.
  • Look in unlikely places
    • Go and do something else entirely. You’d be amazed at where new ideas are hiding out. They’re often where you would least expect them to be.

He also mentioned exploring other creative disciplines which is why it would be helpful to have a hobby outside of your hobby (LOL), in my case, Photography.

I may have babbled more than I have to, again so before this goes entirely out of hand, I leave you with some of the stuff I have been doing lately to release the already overflowing creative juices I gratefully gained in the past months or so.

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This was my favorite line from the latest Disney film, Moana, which reminded me so much of my own grandmother. I also made this for me to keep in mind that God is always with us. 🙂

Also made this odd-looking (and definitely one-of-a-kind) dreamcatcher for the bestie!

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I must say that my year ended with a bang and even though it was overwhelming, I couldn’t have wished for anything better because it reignited my love for ART in more ways than one. Now, I’m back, feeling renewed and more than inspired to CREATE again, to spread optimism and of course God’s love through ART.

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5 Years on WordPress!

It has been 5 years since I imported a year’s worth of teenage rant from another blog hosting website to this one.

It has been 5 years since I made myself a promise that this will be the last personal blog I’ll ever create, but will maintain until I have grand kids of my own.

It has been 5 years since I have been completely mesmerized by WordPress‘ UI, themes, follow-worthy bloggers and user-friendliness that I never thought of trying out something else. I couldn’t be more content.

I still remember blogging in the wee hours of the night in the study hall of my college dormitory in between studying and prying into juicy celeb life online. And I also prayed I won’t see any dead nuns’ ghosts floating around the halls because that dorm stood there long before my mother went to the same university 3 decades before I did.

Although it didn’t take that long for me to fall in love with writing, it’s still quite a feat to look back and see that it has been a decade and a half since I realized I indeed love to write; and eventually poured my heart out and published my very first informal entry into a web full of strangers and readers that hid behind gravatars and anonymity. It also amazes me to have witnessed how simple, personal blogging evolved and continues to evolve  into what is now considered profitable writing and personal branding. Who knows what blogging will be like in the next 5 years? That, I’m looking forward to be a witness of again!

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So for now, I’ll enjoy the moment and celebrate the “wooden” anniversary of my blog! Can I get a high 5?

P.S. Credits to Jonathan Lavender for the super awesome hand illustrations above.

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Friday’s 10 Happy Things, Volume 4

This is a series and blog link up started by Helga Weber of Ditz Revolution. To quote her, “Friday’s 10 Happy Things is where I/we list ten things that made us smile this week so that we can start the weekend on an even more positive note!”. Click on the button below to join in on the fun!

So here are what I’m thankful for this week:

  1. Got time to rest again after roughing it out in driving school and the infamous city traffic.
  2. Talked to long-lost friends, some are nurses working abroad that are coming back home for the first time in the next few weeks, others are med friends that finally got through their licensure exams and two are from my barkada.
  3. Finally found a legit group/organization for our adventure #1 in December and they’re charging the least among all that we talked to/saw online. Don’t want to jinx it though, so that’s all I’m saying for now.
  4. Found a legit home-based job and passed their test! Gotta hustle while waiting for this other job.
  5. Finally got myself to create a few digital collages after sooo long! Here’s one for Halloween!
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  6. Seeing progress in the big clean up after the home renovations. Still a long way to go though.
  7. Med friend #1 made me realize something that never would have crossed my mind in a million years. Precious little “Light bulb moment” right there!
  8. Eat Bulaga! Been a fan of this show since grade school days, I think. These guys never fail to make me laugh (out loud) every single day. Laughing is very therapeutic for me, so I make sure to get my daily dose of it from them. 🙂
  9. Although I am so saddened by the news of the provinces severely affected by the 2 typhoons that came and went this week, I’m thankful that ours was spared. Praying for Lawin to be the last typhoon to enter PAR this year!
  10. God. Always have and always will. Love today’s reading as well as the sweet, accompanying anecdote on the Our Daily Bread app.

“Your unfailing love is better than life itself; how I praise you!”

                               – Psalm 63:3

Ditz Revolution

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Cliché

I was really hoping I could do another collage for this other topic our instructor gave us for our homework, SOULMATES.

It took me days conceptualizing and thinking of ideas on what images to include and how I would like it to look as a whole. Indeed, like what she told us, digital collage isn’t as easy as it sounds.

I put the idea to rest for a few days and cleared my head before deciding to have another go at it today. I reopened the draft I saved and started adding some of the free images she gave us (as promised) on to it. Suddenly, ideas started pouring in. Before I know it, I was getting sucked out of the creative block.

So yaaay! I made another one just in time for Valentine’s day!

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Paris. Cloud 9. Guy on his knees. Sea of flowers. It is exactly what it looks like. No hidden meanings, just one heck of a good, old cliché.

I wish I could make something not as obvious though. I’d like to be one of those collage artists who ever so brilliantly puts 3 images together and that’s it. Message comes through.

I, on the other hand love sprinkling too many images in one collage, making it seem like an amateur’s work. Wait what?! I am an amateur! 😛

Kidding aside, Happy Valentine’s Day everyone! Remember what the Beatles say/sing, All you need is love!

and

“Tis better to have loved and lost, than to never have loved at all.”

~ Alfred Lord Tennyson