Hey guys, it’s been a while! I hope you are all doing well in this new year. I know we’ve been pretty silent in here. For me personally, I’ve been struggling to find a balance between my day job and keeping up with my creative side. On top of that, the pandemic has gotten me in all sorts of mood. Being unable to go home and see my family has sometimes made me feel down and hopeless. In trying to keep sane throughout this difficult time I’ve inadvertently discovered a new love – gardening. A close friend of mine actually influenced me to start, she had successfully grown all sorts of edibles inside her apartment and had shared her urban farming journey with me whenever we talked. So, in November I moved into an apartment with a balcony and started my gardening journey. I didn’t realise how much I would love it until I saw seeds I sowed starting to germinate and grow into “real” plants! There’s just something so amazing and humbling watching a single seed turn into a plant, a flower, something you could actually harvest and eat. So, in this post I just wanted to share with you what I’ve been doing in my garden and how that’s become inspiration for me to paint.
Well hello there! We know it has been a long time. To be honest, we have been swamped with end of year work. We really wanted to make regular bi-weekly posts but it turns out we were a little too ambitious. We also didn’t really want to put too much burden on ourselves since this was supposed to be a fun project, but we do hope we will be more active next year with a schedule that can fit our lives.
Can you believe it’s almost the end of 2020? Like a lot of others, I simply cannot wait for 2021 to roll in. I have been at home for months and while it is boring at times, I convince myself that this is in fact the heroic thing to do during this pandemic. And since this Christmas I will also still be at home, I thought I would look back to some of my Christmas art projects from the years before.
A quaint, fairytale-looking little town by the sea. I fell quite in love with Carmel-by-the-Sea. Carmel-by-the-Sea or Carmel simplified is a small beach city located in Monterey, California. A paradise for artists and art enthusiasts, Carmel is definitely a visit if you are ever visiting California. I’ve always associated the United States with massive metropolitan cities, and was pleasantly surprised when I got a chance to visit Carmel in 2018. You can literally walk the whole of Carmel’s city centre by foot while being enchanted by its fairytale-like cottages and art galleries that surround the city. This pretty little town definitely fueled my creative mind where inspiration was at every corner.
For some reasons, I love facades, windows, doors, and rustic walls that have been standing outside against different kinds of weather, passed by generations, and some have probably have seen the most extreme changes. Every time I travel, I like to see these different kinds of facades. Each one is unique and different, though every country has its own signature.
My favourite facades abroad has to be Portugal, Greece, and Singapore. In Portugal, most of the facades are covered with amazing tiles. Of course this fascinated me further since I am also a lover of tiles. A lot of them are bright in colours with the easy sway of laundry hanging flawlessly, creating this perfect picture of every day life. A lot of the facades in the main streets of Portugal are exceptionally beautiful, but hidden in the narrow streets, you too could find beautiful facades. In Porto, you could find some facades covered in what looks like fish scales. A local told me this was probably the house of a fisherman.
If you follow me on Instagram, you might have seen me share photos of old paintings I did in my stories last week. I’m moving to a new apartment in about a month time, and so that’s given me the opportunity to do one of my favourite activities — spring cleaning! I actually really like sorting through my things and going through old items, I never know what I’ll find. Sometimes I’ll find gems I forgot I had, other times I find well… trash lol! Anyway… when I was sorting out my things last week, I was pleasantly surprised by old paintings I did about 3-4 years ago that I had forgotten about. Some where really terrible, which made me reflect on how much I’ve learned and progressed in the past few years just by consistently showing up and trying out new styles of painting. Some, however, sparked inspiration in me and made me want to recreate it, such as this painting below of butterflies and feathers. It’s such a fun exercise to do where you get to play around with different colour combinations and watch what watercolour does best — flow! Here, I will take you on a step by step journey on how to paint feathers using watercolour.
One of my absolute favourite things about travelling is walking around to search for street arts. I love how casual they seem and yet most of them require exhaustive labour. I have photographed a lot of street arts, from Lisbon to Penang. For each trip, I always try to find out if there are any street arts worth finding. For instance in Penang, they provided a map where you could spot them yourself. This was super fun because I could do it in my own time. In Lisbon, I didn’t need much effort since you could find colourful street arts everywhere. There was however a one popular place, which I took the time to see.
Did you know that in the Victorian era, flowers were used as a way to communicate? Every flower has a meaning, and flowers became a means to convey a certain message. I always knew some flowers had meaning, like how different coloured roses meant different thing. You don’t give a yellow rose to a crush as it’s commonly a sign of loss of affection instead (unless you want to be friend-zoned that is! Haha). However, I had never given much thought of the meaning of other flowers. Not until I stumbled upon Vanessa Diffenbaugh’s novel titled, what other than, “The Language of Flowers”. I had previously obtained this book through a book subscription box two years ago, but only had the time to pick it up and read it recently. I believe the book came to me at the right time, I’m currently obsessed with gardening and flowers has become my favourite object to paint.
I work in in the field of Computer Science. I mainly play around with data warehouses but these days one can’t help to read and learn a little bit about Artificial Intelligence or AI for short. AI has been making headlines everywhere, I don’t need to give you examples, I am pretty certain that you can think of some examples yourself! This is the era that we live in now, though we don’t have flying cars just yet, we can see how advanced we have become (technology wise at least) compared to 100 years ago. Just a week ago, I was browsing through my Instagram search and saw an Instagram profile of a celebrity robot?!! The robot looks legit, I literally thought there was a new singer I didn’t know about, but NO it was a celebrity robot? Do I call it “it” or “she”? I was baffled to be honest (especially that the robot has waaaayyy more followers than the average human!).
So you’ve seen all the inspirational photos of watercolour paintings on social media and decide you want to give it a try. All you need to do is buy some paint, paper and brushes. You go to your local art store (or online!) thinking it’ll be straightforward but then you get there and ton of other questions surfaces as you are welcomed by a wide variety of paints, papers and brushes.
Art Jog is an annual art show in our home town Yogyakarta. It is an event that attracts many people, including those outside of Yogyakarta. Each year, local artists as well as a few international artists, submit their very best work to be showcased at this prestigious event. The committee of Art Jog changes the theme each year, including the setting, making this extremely attractive to art lovers as well as selfie lovers (unfortunately so). The last two years, I wrote on my social media how I was disappointed with the amount of people using the art works as photo backgrounds. In my opinion, this issue has really downgraded the quality of Art Jog. However, it is still an event that I look forward to each year (I always try to come at an unusual time, hoping it would be a little quieter than usual – it doesn’t always work though). I feel a little sad that this year I won’t be able to go. They did a virtual opening some days ago and there will be a virtual tour available too. Apparently they will also open the gallery and limit visitors. For me personally, I won’t be coming, my health is way more important than coming to see this beloved event. In this post, I thought I would do a round up of my favourite art works from Art Jog 2017-2019.