I’ve been looking for a corner craft punch for a while now. I have one that’s great for big projects, but not suitable for smaller pieces like postcards or calling cards. I ordered one online but due to a mix-up on the part of the shop, I never got it.
There’s a shop in Greenbelt 5 called Noteworthy. I try to avoid this shop because it’s a big temptation. Last Saturday though, I couldn’t resist going in. Guess what they had? A corner punch.
What made this so great is that it was perfectly sized for the projects I had in mind. Not only that, it already had three different sizes. I didn’t have to look for anything else, plus, no worries about twisting or moving any parts.
I didn’t buy it immediately, though I went back today to get it. I’m pretty excited to use it.
Another interesting thing about this is the packaging. The craft punch comes in a plastic shell with cardboard backing, which is standard for a lot of products. I hate this packaging, purely because it’s such a hassle to open. Most use a stapler to keep the cardboard and the plastic splitting, and removing that is a pain (literally and figuratively) if you don’t have a stable remover.
What made this ingenious is that you don’t need to use stapler or tape to keep it together. There’s a small slot in the plastic, where an extended part on the cardboard slides into, effectively holding it all together. You can either cut it off, or slightly turn the plastic back to let the cardboard slide. The latter will let you reuse the packaging if you need to.
It was raining when Hansel and I left Manila last Wednesday. The sky was dark grey, the rain lashing against the plane’s windows as it prepared to take off. I’m a bit of a nervous traveller, so I pushed myself to sleep.
I don’t think I slept at all. I may have, but I was still too aware of the goings on around me. Plus, I was hungry.
This trip began as a spur of the moment idea with my officemate Lud last year. He got a few others — Hansel, Rainier, Aileen — on board, and we took advantage of the seat sale. We got tickets at different times, hence our staggered arrival.
The flight took a little under two hours, with the captain boasting that we were actually early. We didn’t have much to wait as Hansel and neither had check in luggage. Grabbed a few maps and fliers, breezed through immigration and got ourselves Octopus cards. Located the queue for the A21 bus and we were off.
The last time I was in Hong Kong was five years ago. I arrived late evening, so I couldn’t see much of HK. Today I arrived with the sun still up, but by the time the bus left, it was early evening. Not much to say about the bus ride, but it was a double decker so yay. And free WiFi.
The hotel was located in Tsim Sha Tsui along the busy Nathan Road. It wasn’t a hotel that occupied the whole building, but rather a hotel located inside a building and was compromised of small rooms. My and Aileen’s room was very small, enough to fit a bunk bed and an open shelf. It at least had its own bathroom and toilet, which was considered a deluxe upgrade. The bed was surprisingly comfortable.
After stopping off my things, we headed out to find a place to eat. Lack of planning led us to one of the side streets along Nathan Rd., and ending up in a Chinese restaurant called Ming Yuen Congee and Noodle Restaurant. Thankfully they had an English menu.
To be honest I don’t know if the food was that good, or I was just that hungry. I finished my meal, thanks to Handel’s help, and we went off to find dessert. Aileen and I ended up at Cotton On/Typo. Massive sale; massive self-control.
Walked back to the hostel. H, R, and I went exploring further, while L and A decided to get some rest. That’s where we found a side street with some cheap street food and a recommended noodle shop. Walked further up Nathan and back down again. Despite the late hour, there were still a lot of people around.
Finally, exhaustion came. Needed sleep, because the next day we were going to Disneyland.
I’m no stranger to cons. I’ve attended a lot over the years, and have gone to so much more since I got into Doctor Who and met my Sepanx friends. However, it was my first time to sell something last February 25, at the Komiket in Centris Elements.
I can’t recall how it all started, really, but suddenly a few of my officemates and I were talking about getting a table at Komiket and selling stickers that we designed. Next thing I knew, Kate was getting us a table, and everyone was preparing for it.
As usual, I procrastinated, thinking that I had enough time. Unlike my friends, I wasn’t a designer and dabbled only in drawing and graphic design. Not only did I have to brainstorm sticker ideas, I had to learn how to create them in digital form using software like Adobe Illustrator.
Long story short, I crammed. I finalized my designs barely two weeks before, and had things printed less than 36 hours before. Stayed up all night to cut them (because I didn’t go for the digital-cut service) and woke up early on the 25th to set things up.
Thankfully, things worked out well despite all the rush. My simple designs actually got sold, and I managed to earn back the amount I spent for printing. We even had a lady inquire about our commission prices (to which we all replied with a blank stare). It wasn’t perfect, but I’d like to think we learned a lot from this venture. We’re now planning to doing this on a regular basis, setting up a collective name and all that.
Thanks for checking out our work!
Artists and friends
Having a brand helps get people to buy from you, or at least have a way to reach out to you if the want to avail of your services and buy more of your products.
Have an inventory of your products, and clearly label the price of each one.
If you can have a system of how you sell and split the cost, that will help.
Signs and display cases are hella useful.
Promote, promote, promote!
I’m excited to see this grow. It’s a great way for me to keep creating and improve on my designing chops, and who knows how it’ll grow as a business? Too early to tell, but hey, all the possibilities!
You can’t read romance without having your feelings go all crazy, more so if you write it. #romanceclass #FeelsFest is all about the hugot and the kilig and everything that goes with it.
October 22, 2016 was a long anticipated day by the community of writers and readers that make up #romanceclass. There have been many smaller events in the past, such as April Feels Day, (Trinoma thing), and workshops that helped writers be more attuned to their craft (and enjoy some time with LI and MC pegs).
The event was hosted by the Ayala Malls, who tapped the #romanceclass to help support their Little Library. Guests of #FeelsFest who donate books to the cause get to pick from a selection of ebooks, all penned by RomanceClass authors, in exchange.
Here are my Top 5 Things about FeelsFest
5: Donate a book, get a book
FeelsFest was hosted by the AyalaMalls, who tapped the #romanceclass to help support their Little Library. Guests can donate books to the cause and get the same number of ebooks from #romancelass writers, in return. It’s a great way to get something new to read, even if you’re on a budget. You’re also helping people get more books to read through Ayala’s Little Free Library.
Just a few of the books you can get for free with your book donations!
Registered guests can join in the games. There’s the Photo Scavenger Hunt, where you have a list of things you need to take a photo of. Mind you, it’s not just simply taking a picture. I looked through the list and some of them will require guts, if you’re a shy person like me.
Then there’s the RomanceClass Bingo. You’ll have a grid of descriptions, and you’ll need to find someone who fits those. You can’t have someone filling in more than one box at a time, so even if you know someone who can fit many of the descriptions, you’ll have to find someone else. It was a fun way to get to know the RomanceClass community.
Turnout to #FeelsFest was amazing! I arrived past noon and there were already quite a few people going around. Past events were pretty well attended, but the venues were smaller. We had some reservations at holding it in a bigger and much more public place, but fears were laid to rest when people came, stayed, and had a great time. While majority of the crowd were friends, family, and fans (yes, there are those!), there were a few curious onlookers who came by, and hopefully got a copy of the books!
There is no clear division between writers and readers. A lot of the writers are readers themselves, and quite a few of the readings are also diving into writing, inspired by the enthusiasm of the writers. Then there’s the people who support them: friends and family, people who contribute to the books as character pegs, knowledge resources, cover and layout artists, editors, inspirations, actors…
2. Live Readings
Mina had this idea of having parts of the book read. A year ago, she tapped the help of theater actors Gio Gahol and Rachel Coates to read excerpts. It was only for a class, but it grew and grew until now we have several actors and actresses. The first time, it was for the writers, and it was a fun way to see how their work was interpreted by other people.
Here are the books that were read:
The Hometown Hazard by Dawn Lanuza
Sweeter by the Second by C.P. Santi
Tempting Victoria by Mina V. Esguerra
What You Wanted by Mina V. Esguerra
Save the Cake by Stella Torres
Keep the Faith by Ana Tejano
When Sparks Fly by Ines Bautista-Yao
It also proved to be a great marketing tool, because people flocked the book merchandise table to buy what has been read, and more! Some of the books were sold out halfway through the event!
1. New Releases
FeelsFest was the venue for eighteen new books. Considering that there was no recent romanceclass held, this was a big thing. Many were new releases from romanceclass veterans, but some were from first timers. It was awesome to see their works being snapped up and gushed over.
Here’s the list of new releases. You can get ebook copies from Amazon.
It’s been a year and a half since my visit to Sydney. It was a surprise business trip slash holiday, one I never expected to have when I signed on to join Canva.
We’re off to Sydney!
I knew a little about Sydney thanks to my aunt Ruth and her daughter Miel, both of whom visited the coastal city before. I learned a lot about kangaroos, koalas, and Cadbury chocolates, but none of their stories prepared me for the awesomeness of the place. I had fallen in love with the city from the get-go.
In front of our hostel, before exploring Taronga Zoo. Photo by Thea Cinco.
I suppose part of the attraction had something to do with the fact that our trip wasn’t purely a tourist thing. We had plenty of locals (our Sydney counterparts) who took us around their favorite places, often away from the usual tourist destinations. Sure, we did what tourists did, but we also did what locals did.
I loved every place we went to, but my favorite places were Katoomba, Newtown and Surry Hills. Katoomba reminded me of Baguio, only smaller, neater, and much colder. Newtown was like Cubao X on steroids. Surry Hills was near the CBD, but still laid back enough for you not to feel hurried.
Sightseeing in the Blue Mountains
Bondi in autumn. Empty and cold.
In fact, Sydney on the whole didn’t feel very much like a city I’m used to. The whole vibe was laid back and chill. By day until the evening, people went about their business. However, since shops closed by 5 pm, there were less people around. On our last day we walked along the streets and was surprised that it was empty by 2 am. In Metro Manila, things were just starting to get lively by then.
Walking along the streets of Sydney at 4 AM
The best part of the whole trip of course was getting to know the Sydney team. As a newbie then, it helped me become more familiar with the people I was working with, not just the local team, but also the one across the ocean. We totalled to about fifty or so then. Now, the number has doubled.
When we could still easily fit into one frame
Selfie before heading back to Manila
More than a year after, I still can’t forget Sydney. I’ve done a lot of things in the two weeks but that’s only the tip of the iceberg. Here’s to another opportunity to visit.
As part of our Architecture of Ideas campaign, we have launched a non-profit initiative to build a free public library called The Book Stop. The Book Stop serves as an open library and book exchange where everyone is invited to come and grab a book. It will be placed in venues like malls, parks, commercial centers and other similar public grounds.
This pop-up library will provide a space where people can enjoy reading, interact in lively discussions with fellow readers and share their love for books by donating their own. Eventually, it can provide data to measure the need for more public libraries in the country.
I love the idea of a reading nook in a public space like a park. The idea of being able to go to one, grab a book and have a safe spot to read it is very nice. We don’t have enough public spaces like parks, and goodness knows we don’t have enough public libraries where people can indulge in reading without having to spend money to get a book.
We got to talk to some of the team behind this, which resulted in them interviewing us. I told them that I was a library & information science student and that I used to work in a library. We talked about the idea (like I said it was very good), the collection (it was a mish-mash of random books that they don’t take inventory of but just count at the end of the day), and what things they can do to improve on it (the idea that people can freely take books builds a trust among the people).
I would definitely love to see more places like this around the metro. I think it would be a great idea for the firm to partner with librarians to plan more spaces that are bigger, more accessible, and have more services that people can avail of. Come to think of it, that would make a great thesis. Hmm.
I’m not into the usual Holy Week stuff now, but it feels comforting to see traditions being passed on. Reminds me of the time when my grandmother would pull us kids to join it. Sunday now, the time when Jesus rises from the dead. The Salubong is now happening, and the procession just passed by the house.
There are two processions: One with the men and the statue of Jesus, the other with the women and the statue of Mary (which was, IMO, creepy covered up with dark cloth). They go in different directions and meet up at the town plaza.
There, a little girl dressed up as an angel is lowered from a high platform. The statue of Mary is placed directly below her, and as she descends, she’ll take the cloth off Mary. Her mourning is now over as she sees her son alive.
When I was a kid, my grandma would wake us up to see it pass by our house, then we’d go back to bed. Only once did I recall actually joining it with her. She woke us up early, then we waited for the women’s procession to pass by. My brothers, young as they were, joined us.
I realise that the length of time my grandma is gone is almost as long as I’ve had her. Her influence is still strong though. Miss her terribly at times like these.
I had long wanted to attend Graphika Manila. To me, it was the design and art event to be at because of the guests who would be there to give a talk. Last year they had Seb Lester and in 2014, Jessica Hische.
This year, I decided to take the plunge and get a ticket. I got a student early bird discount so my ticket was cheaper than the one advertised. I expected to go alone, but thankfully a bunch of people from work were going. In the end, I was the only non-designer in the group, but it was fun to hang out with them. I was inspired not just by the people talking onstage, but also by the ones I was with. No bull guys. 🙂
Here’s a few pictures from both days.
Timothy Goodman ends day 1 with a bang
Everyone enjoying Harvey Tolibao’s presentation on day 2, which was really brilliant, in a stand-up comedian way.
At one point he three points that he takes to heart when it comes to his passion:
Start before you’re ready
Learn it, teach it, own it.
But of all three, what stood out the most for me was “Start before you’re ready.” All too often we wait inspiration to strike, or for the “right time” to come before we do something. Then again, how do we know when we’re ready? How do we know when the time is right? His advice is close to Nike’s “Just do it”. It will happen.
He also said, “Embrace your passion. You’ll never know how it’ll play out.” Many of the speakers showed how they started out without having formal study of art or graphic design, but it was something that they wanted to do. They indulged it and kept working with it, until they got to the point where they were considered experts in their field. A lot of people start with an interest in art and design, but not everyone sees it through. So keep at it, keep doing, and who knows where you’ll end up.
Let us know what are the Five (5) ways you can support Filipino authors? Buying their books is definitely the best way to do so, but what more can we do?
The most obvious is to buy their books, especially the indie and self-published authors. Unlike authors who don’t have a contract with publishers, they don’t get any earnings until their book is sold. I know a lot (if not most) of these authors don’t write for the money, but it’s great that we can still purchase it. Believe me, seeing that someone bought your book is such a thrill, and even if that’s just $0.99.
Spread the word! I find that the best way to get other to purchase and read a book is to talk about it. While authors do their thing for publicity, as a reader you can do your part. Some people may not want to pick up a book because of its cover, or its genre, but if they hear you talk about it (why you liked it, you know the author, or for whatever reason) there’s a bigger chance that they’ll buy it and read it.
Give it as a gift. Buying a copy of a local author’s book and giving it as a gift helps create awareness about it. You can give it to anyone, be it an ebook copy or a physical copy.
Join and host giveaways! A lot of giveaway mechanics have people follow social media accounts of authors, and one share equals to one entry. While it may sound a bit trite, it’s pretty effective. When you share the link to the giveaway, there’s a hug chance that people who follow you will be curious. That’s already one extra person who’ll know about it.
Attend events. While authors love it when you buy their books, they love it even more when they get to meet you. So if the author says he or she will be at this event for a talk or a book signing, go (schedule permitting, of course). You can tell them up close how much you enjoyed their work. From the writer’s POV, it’s really cool when you get to talk to someone who has read your work. They’re appreciative of you, and they feel a humble pride that someone has read and liked their book.
If you enjoyed reading the book, tell others about it.