Any chance I get, I try to squeeze in some time for an artwork. Or two. Or four. :P
Sometimes, I join in the workshops and paint together with my students. Here are some birds (kingfisher, woodpecker, doves) that I painted during a private watercolor workshop last weekend. Other times, I experiment with new craft supplies (I have a closet full of new materials, hehe!) and play around to see what I can do with them.
I recently experimented with gouache on canvas and wood. These were all done in one night...while all the paints were out. Quite a hassle to clean up (which is why I prefer paint in pans) so I made the most of the mess. The thing with paint that comes in tubes is I can never squeeze out just the right amount! I always end up wasting so much paint, so I use these nifty little craft tubs to store the paint, instead of squeezing them directly onto a palette.
Gouache is opaque watercolor, and can be used on more surfaces other than paper. It contains gum arabic, and dries quickly, with a matte finish. You can use a lot of water to achieve the transparent watercolor effect (like on the canvas above), but ideally, you use its opaque-ness to glaze on colors and layer them on top of each other. It's fun to use, especially for quick paintings. You get the opaque effect without the thickness of oil or acrylic.
With all the craft experiments that I've done, I've accumulated quite a number of artworks. I decided to put some of them up to decorate Pipino's new wall! Watercolor, weaves, macrame, embroidery, stamps, calligraphy, lettering and leafing--all made by hand.
The resto renovations are just in time for Pipino's 5th birthday. It was in April 2010 when we launched Pipino as a 6-item line under Pino's menu. We were experimenting, testing out the market, and then decided to open the actual restaurant 6 months later.
Copper leaf on Muse Watercolor Paper
We went back to the kitchen last week and did more experimenting. I'm so excited for these new dishes: Squash Arrabbiata and Lentil Bolognese. Both are gluten-free!
Champorado-Suman topped with Mango Mint. These will be available starting April 22!
Another thing I tinkered around with this week was Pipinoveg.com! I am sooo not a web designer (I get dizzy when I see terms like DNS and CNAME) so this is a real labor of love. :P
The site has all the basic information about the resto, including a map, and the menu.
The thing about 'experimenting' is that most of the time, you need to have an end-goal in mind. There are times when it's okay to just create anything 'for art's sake', but if you want to (or in most cases, HAVE to) create something useful, then it's important for you to have an idea of the final outcome, so that all you have to do is fill that gap in between. And that gap is basically the whole creation process. I'm obviously the calculated type (I don't like wasting materials!), but I try to let go a bit during the creation process, welcoming little unplanned strokes here and there, to see where it takes me. As makers, remember that you have a responsibility over the things that you produce. Create beautiful things! And never stop experimenting. :)