Why did you decide to pursue a career in the Visual Arts?
I am a self-taught painter based in Cebu City, Philippines. I have always been drawing and sketching since early childhood, but have not really had the chance to get any formal instruction in the arts since I live on an island. Art supplies were hard to find growing up, so I have only been able to start painting in adulthood. I have degrees in Medical Technology and Nursing, and have worked in the hotel, telecommunications, and I.T. industries, but decided in late 2014 to quit my job and take a chance to earn a living doing what I love --- painting.
When did you make that important decision?
One day in 2014 (when I was in my late 40s), I sat down and thought that my job wasn't really taking me anywhere. I told myself that if I didn't take the risk now, when would I take the chance, when I was 60 and couldn't see the colors properly anymore? So I decided to leave my job that was giving me a regular monthly income but no satisfaction, and started painting full-time.
I like how painting lets me manipulate the way I see the world around me. Art gives me a power, a sort of magic that I cannot have in other aspects of my life. On canvas, I can move mountains, change the colors of things, or make them disappear. I can reduce viewers to the size of a cup and make them focus on abstract patterns in ordinary everyday objects. My work allows me to share what I see in my head with others, and it lets me bring other people into this private space that I inhabit and share all the wonderful things I see. Art is magical.
What inspires you the most?
I take my inspiration from nature, particularly from the way that light changes how things appear. I like how patterns emerge and things change in different lighting conditions.
I work mostly in oils and watercolors. I started out painting in acrylic, but found that the tropical weather made the paint dry much too fast for my painting style, so I switched to oils. Recently, I decided to work in watercolor just to practice control and patience.
Preferred locations to work?
My studio, lakeside, oceanside.