Forest Floors

Your head is a living forest
full of songbirds.

EE Cummings

I am currently working on a mini-print series called Forest Floors. Some of the prints will be available at the upcoming 10A Alabama Arts and Crafts Fair on July 19, at 10A Alabama Street, Quezon City (near the corner of E Rodriguez and Tomas Morato).

Carving out stamps is really therapeutic, and it’s one way I can be productive when I’m upset about something or when my weird mood swings kick in. Today was kind of a gloomy day for me, full of all sorts of confusing and sad things, and I badly needed an outlet. Sometimes, though, when I draw to let some steam out, I feel like it’s disrespectful to the craft, using it to keep my monsters at bay and all. But some days it’s the only way out other than just sleeping, which isn’t very productive. (Also, I’ve been reduced to writing like an elementary student. How about that.)

As for earlier this week, I’ve been thinking about how I should cut myself a little slack about this whole illustration business. I’ve been on my toes, always feeling pressured about “making it big” or getting really good as soon as I can, like there’s this big deadline in my life. This makes me feel incompetent, and sometimes I can’t help but compare myself to my peers, which is proving to be a counterproductive and dangerous thing to do. It dawned on me the other day that I should be patient with myself, and just do things at my own pace, and not force myself to draw what’s popular, or change my style to what’s in or what most people like. I only started teaching myself to really draw and compose images and paint when I joined Ang INK, which is just three years ago, a fairly recent event. Before that all I had were doodles, and I couldn’t even stand using watercolor, and I barely had an illustration portfolio. I look at where I am now, all the progress I’ve made and all the things I’ve learned, and I realize that I shouldn’t be too hard on myself, and just work on getting better at my own pace.

There. I hope I pull myself together this week, stay calm, and go about things as quietly as I can.

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