Something’s Fishy


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I find human and animal forms very challenging to paint. I’ve tried fishes before but I never liked how they turned out so I don’t often try them again. Last week I thought I’d try ink and wash for my fish paintings and I think I like how the first ones turned out.

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I used my Sennelier watercolor block for these paintings, and I’m pretty happy with it. The texture made it really easy to create the illusion of scales. It also took the ink from my Rotring Isograph pretty well. No bleeding or any difficulties sketching on it. I wish I can capture in the photos how delightful the texture of the finished paintings feel.

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Ink and wash seems to be my comfort zone, and I’m enjoying it a lot right now. I’m learning new things and discovering new techniques along the way.

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Here are the colors that I used for the fishes, in case anyone would find it useful:

  • Black goldfish – Payne’s Grey
  • Veiltail Goldfish – Bright Red, Lemon Yellow, Warm Sepia, Payne’s Grey
  • Salmon – Payne’s Grey, Naples Yellow Deep, Venetian Red, Lemon Yellow
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Ramami!


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Last night my husband and I hung out and had dinner with a couple of good friends. There’s a spate of budget ramen carts and stalls all over the south and one of them happened to pop up beside our favorite shawarma place. It was okay, though a bit confusing to the tastebuds because it’s like a cross between a Japanese ramen and Chinese noodle soup. Haha. The shawarma was on point, though. We had dessert and coffee at home. After a long week, it’s a relief to hang out with friends who are low-key and can enjoy simple pleasures.

On a side note, I used my newΒ cat’s tongue brush for this painting. It’s so much fun to use! I thought I’d only use it for botanical paintings but it’s a very versatile brush. I was able to drop by ArtNebulaPh at BF Homes yesterday and after playing with a whole lotta brushes, decided on a Raphael cat’s tongue (#6) and an Isabey blue squirrel round mop (3/0). Really great brushes, these two. They can hold a point very well. I also got a few Sennelier halfpans to complete my travel palette.

Overall, a fun day! ^_^

Busy, Busy Week


It’s been pretty hectic in the office these past few months, but especially this past weeks. I was hardly able to get any writing done, though I was able to make a bit of art here and there. This week was less brutal than the week before, so I was able to stay up a bit later than usual to finish a few watercolor pieces.

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It started with World Watercolor Group’s theme about dandelions. I was never a dandelion chaser when I was a child. I just let them be. I thought they were beautiful when little bits of it are floating on the air. Other kids would run around and catch them, making wishes before they blow them off to the air again. I enjoyed making the dandelion painting so I thought I’d try a few botanical paintings again. I only made one botanical painting before, I believe, of a basil plant. I thought I’d try other things.

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I found a tutorial on Youtube about how to make blueberries, but it turned out to be a bit darker than I wanted. I still like it, though. I don’t always make paintings that are big like this, but I must admit that it’s enjoyable to have a lot of space to work on the little details too.

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This one’s my favorite, it’s a coffee plant based on a photo of cafea arabica I found online. The beans are smaller and the painting less detailed than the blueberry painting, but I like that it looks cleaner. Also…coffee. ^_^

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The last botanical painting I did was of Anona Squamosa L. or better known by its local name, Atis. Internationally, it’s called sugar apple or sweet sop. It’s one of my favorite fruits, even if it’s a little difficult to eat. It’s full of seeds inside, and the sweet pulp wrap around each seed. So you pop the seed in your mouth, eat the sweet pulp and spit the seed out. It’s a lot of work to eat, but I really enjoy it. πŸ™‚

I loved this little foray into botanical painting, though it takes time to work out the little details and lay down all the layers in every part of the plant. I think i’ll keep on working at it when I have time. πŸ™‚

Family Dinner


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A few days ago my husband and I joined his side of the family for dinner. We had family from the US on vacation, and it was a dinner to celebrate birthdays and the despedida. Traffic going to Megamall was abysmal. I haven’t been to that part of Manila in a while, so I was completely floored to see how EDSA was just a carpet of red tail lights slowly inching forward. It was horrible, and I was so relieved we got to Megamall around 7:45 PM. Dad’s was full, which was a little surprising given it’s a Tuesday night. It wasn’t so bad, though, the food was good and the service was polite and punctual. Dinner with family was also good, it’s nice to see the cousins complete and just enjoying each other’s company.

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We stayed until closing time, and it was pretty sad to see the cousins lingering around each other because goodbyes suck. 😦 Despedidas are bittersweet that way. Eating soothes the difficulty of parting, sending family members off with best wishes and happy memories.

Here’s looking forward to the next family gatherings.

First Impressions on Sennelier Aqua Mini


My husband and I have very different hobbies, although we take much pleasure in indulging each other’s interests. I’m a relative newbie in watercolor, I really just recently discovered that not all watercolors come in tubes haha. I discovered Japanese watercolor (loved those!), and now I want to try other brands. I want to try small tins of watercolor pans just so that I can test them if I like them first, without buying a bigger, more expensive set. I also like to integrate little sketches in my journal entries, so having a tiny little watercolor set to bring along anywhere would be pretty great. My husband bought me the Sennelier Aqua-mini watercolor set which I think is just perfectly what I wanted. It’s my first time to try this brand so I’m completely unsure what to expect.

I think it’s really cute, though. I mean, look at it.

Sennelier Aqua Mini

Sennelier Aqua Mini

Eight colors in a tiny tin. I’ve never had a watercolor set this small. And there’s a teeny-tiny little brush in that middle slot. More on that brush later. A newly-opened, pristine watercolor set is beautiful, but of course that’s gonna get pretty messy real quick.

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To give you an idea how tiny it is, it’s just a little over 3.5 inches long and about 2.5 inches wide. It fits right in my pocket. Not that I’d carry it in my pocket. ^_^ The slots for the different colors are pretty closely spaced so if you use a big brush, it’s easy for the plastic holder to get pretty messy. I often just paint little things in my journal so I just use a small brush. It doesn’t get very messy as you can see below.

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It’s still looking pretty neat, I’d say. That teeny brush didn’t look very functional when I first saw it. I mean, it is so small. I was kinda resigned to just leaving that unused. But then the brush felt nice when I tried it. It’s pretty firm and I can use it for tiny details. Also, it’s a lot of fun to use for letters.

Sennelier Aqua Mini

Sennelier Aqua Mini

For a small brush, it gives me a lot of control with the strokes. I really enjoyed using it for brush calligraphy, which I only tried with watercolor once, if I remember correctly. I like it a lot. It made practicing my alibata characters a lot more fun.

The texture of the cakes are more soft, thick, and creamy than the Japanese watercolor that I’m used to. They’re nicely saturated and they’re easy to integrate with water and mix together.

Sennelier Aqua Mini

Sennelier Aqua Mini

Overall, I love everything about it. Small and compact, the brush is pretty nifty, and the colors are smooth and vibrant. I look forward to using it more often. πŸ™‚

My hubby got this from ArtNebulaPh.