Original Watercolor Paintings for Sale and How to Display Them

“Draw the art you want to see, start the business you want to run, play the music you want to hear, write the books you want to read, build the products you want to use – do the work you want to see done.”
― Austin Kleon, Steal Like an Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative

So here I am. I finally completed 12 botanical paintings that are for sale. It was an exciting process of finding the subjects that appeal to me. I have to paint what I like because if these paintings will not end up in somebody else’s home, I am keeping them and I will still be happy.  I find joy in the creative process but the business side of it is what I dread most. What do I know about selling? Nothing. However, these words spoke to me.

“Don’t wait until you know who you are to get started.”
― Austin Kleon, Steal Like an Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative

“Every accomplishment starts with the decision to try.”– Gail Devers,  three-time Olympic champion in track-and-field.

Seeing the paints, brushes, paper and other materials I have to buy to continue doing what I love is my motivation. Ha! So I am now putting my paintings for sale on my Facebook page. These are all botanical watercolor done using artist-grade watercolor and 140 lb. hot-pressed watercolor paper in A3 size (11.7″ x 16.5″). I used Holbein for the watercolor and Daler-Rowney for the paper. All the paintings in this set are in landscape orientation but there are some paintings that still look okay when displayed in portrait orientation.

I am selling these paintings unframed because it is easier to ship them that way. The paintings will be shipped from the Philippines. When a painting is unframed, the client has the option to choose the right frame that will match the interiors where the the painting will be displayed.  I suggest that the painting be framed in a glass to protect the painting from dust and water.  For those who do not want the glare of the glass in a painting, there is always the non-reflective glass but it may cost a little more.  One can go a step further by using a conservation glass with UV protection against harmful rays.

To help you visualize how the paintings will look like in frames, I made the mock-ups below.

I have taken a step further by putting the paintings in an interior scene so you can better visualize where to possible display them in your space.

I hope I have convinced you enough to brighten up your walls with my paintings. You can have a closer look at my paintings in my Facebook page.  Message me there for details.

For larger photos of the paintings, click here.

“All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them.” –Walt Disney

 

Sources for the mock-ups:

http://www.freepik.com/free-vector/realisitc-photo-frame-mockup_1177173.htm
http://www.freepik.com/free-vector/blank-picture-frame-on-a-wooden-wall-background_852393.htm http://www.freepik.com/free-psd/ipad-screen-on-wood-background_1096356.htm https://365webresources.com/10-free-poster-frame-mock-ups-graphic-designers/ https://www.freecreatives.com/mockups/photo-frame-psd-mockups.html

5 Ways to Pay Off Debt and Avoid Filing for Bankruptcy

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You can throw away the notices, ignore your email inbox or evade the debt-collector but your debts will not go away. As of December 2016, the average credit card debt for a United States household is over $16,000. This is on top of student loans, mortgages, personal loans, and many other forms of debt that rapidly drowns many people today. You can avoid these responsibilities only for as long, and the interest rates will make it worse. In time, you will be left with no choice but to file for bankruptcy—a time that many wish not to come.

Even when your debts seemed overwhelming and your income is just not enough at this time to recover, you can still pay it off with some effective strategy and a heap of determination. Here are tips to help you deal with debt and avoid filing for bankruptcy:

1. Settle or Negotiate Your Debts

You know you can’t run away forever from debts, so you might as well face it. Debt settlement is similar to the concept of debt consolidation. This means to negotiate with your creditors to arrange a more suitable payment scheme for your current situation. Most lenders are willing to work with you to settle your balances and devise strategies including temporary waiving of payment, adjusting terms, extending deadlines, and many others. Talk to your creditors as soon as possible and negotiate.

2. Property Selling

If your current income is insufficient to cover your debts, you might want to start selling some properties so you can afford to pay. Make an inventory of your properties and identify what valuables you can live without. You can sell your second car, some jewelry, antique collections, etc. This is much better than filing for bankruptcy and have your cherished properties taken from you.

3. Borrow Money from Family and Friends

It takes a lot of pride- swallowing, but borrowing money from family or friends without interest may cover what you need at the moment. Just make sure to pay them when you already can. Confronting money issues takes practicality and you have to be realistic about it. Your family and friends may understand your situation and you might just get your debt break.  

4. Adjust Your Lifestyle

Living a life of frugality is the first step to financial independence. Find even the smallest ways to save money by adjusting your lifestyle. Do away with unused subscriptions, cut down on unnecessary spending or minimize eating out. There are a lot of ways to save money, you just have to be practical about it.  

5. Seek the Help of  a Professional

Hire professionals who can help you with your debt, it can be a financial adviser or a Houston bankruptcy lawyer. These people have all the necessary experiences that can help you get out of debt in the best way possible. Make sure you hire someone trustworthy with a proven track record of excellent services.

Getting out of debt requires discipline and character. Once you decide to follow these steps, you need to commit and see them all through until you reach your desired financial independence.

 

 

A Sohoton-Siargao Trip for the Introverts

My friends and I have this unwritten agreement to travel together every year. The last time we traveled in a huge group was in 2015. The same group agreed to travel to Batanes this year but it never materialized. I had work last year that I never had time to arrange trips for this year so I figured that the best way to get them together was to schedule a trip that does not require plane tickets. I had Sohoton and Siargao in mind. Alas, I scheduled it on a summer where many of them have office summer activities that are also in Siargao. In the end, there were only four of us traveling to Sohoton.

Then, three of us were left to travel to Siargao. Yes, three introverted individuals who do not like crowds and would love to be left alone to explore. Yes, it can be done. And yes, the trip can still be fun.

Day 1 to Day 2

We started our journey in a van to Bad-as, Placer, Surigao del Norte. It was funny that the 3 introverts (and agoraphobics!) found themselves inside a van with 12 strangers. It is the only way to reach Surigao a little faster. A van ride would take us around 2 hours to reach Bad-as while a bus ride would take around 3 hours. In Bad-as, we met our 4th travel buddy, Bryan, and we rode in another van together going to Hayanggabon Port. In Hayanggabon Port, we were met by the boatmen from Cinnamon Island.

Our trip to Sohoton in Bucas Grande was already pre-arranged by Bryan. An overnight stay in an air-conditioned cottage, 4 meals, island hopping tour and boat transfers (to port) cost us Php 3,200 each. We would have gotten a cheaper rate if we were traveling with a bigger group but we all felt the fee was all worth it. It was a stress-free time in Sohoton. The boat would wait for us. The sumptuous food would wait for us. Everything was ready. I remembered us saying, “I hope there is food. I am already hungry.” By the time we went down to the dining table, the food is already waiting for us. Five-star service. We highly recommend Cinnamon Island in Bucas Grande.

So what did we do in Sohoton?

Island hopping! We docked in a beach full of people so we asked the boatmen to find us another beach. So here we were! There were no other people but us in this beach!

It was that easy to find our own beach here.

Buried our feet in the softest sand.

Swam with the jellyfishes.

Swam inside the cave

Jumped. My friends jumped. I made an excuse that I would be the one to take their photos.

Spelunking. We went inside the Crystal cave whose stalactites and stalagmites were covered in crystals. They shimmered when they caught light.

Ate fresh and yummy seafood!

We had early lunch on Day 2 and we immediately asked to be dropped at the Socorro port to catch the boat trip to Dapa in Siargao. The boat ride from Cinnamon Island to Socorro port took us more than an hour on a large pumpboat. From Socorro, I think it took us almost an hour to reach Dapa. I was seated behind the captain of the boat. The sea was a little rougher than what I was used to. I felt seasick and was trying to keep my cool until my body gave in. I felt my lunch in my mouth and was trying to hold the food in while I patted the captain’s shoulder and motioned that I need a plastic bag. He hurriedly gave the plastic bag he had, unpacking his extra shirt inside. I threw up my lunch like a pro that I am. ( I have motion sickness so I am used to throwing up without much fuss.) My friends were unaware of what happened. I was that discreet.

From Dapa, we rode a tricycle to General Luna where we were booked in an Airbnb cottage. The cottage was perfect for the island vacation we imagined. We took turns in having our picture taken in this hammock!

We had our dinner at Kermit’s since it was highly recommended in many reviews we read.

After that, we called it a day.

Day 3

In this trip, we just list down the activities we wanted to do and just find ways to do them; no advance planning on where to book tours. We wanted to go to Magpupungko but we did not research tide forecast beforehand. One must go to Magpupungko during low tide so we opted to go to Sugba Lagoon instead. Sugba Lagoon is in the Municipality of Del Carmen. Many of the blogs we read said that the mode of transportation was through a habal-habal, a motorcycle with roof attached. While many drivers can accommodate the 3 of us in a motorcycle, we chose to hire a tricycle. An hour-ride on a motorcyle with 3 other people would be uncomfortable. Yes, we love adventure but we also wanted comfort. The tricycle ride cost us Php 1600 roundtrip. To reach Sugba Lagoon, one needs to hire a boat at the municipal tourism center. The ride costs 1600 per boat. We passed through a large mangrove plantation, the second largest in the country.


We reached the lagoon and there are already tourists ahead of us which aggravated the anxiety of the introverts! So we looked for a table and just observed the crowd. We waited for the area to be less crowded.

So what did we do in Sugba Lagoon?

Jump! Oh well. My friend, Arnel, jumped while I did what I do best- document the jump.

Stand Up Paddle. Because we were non-swimmers, we wore lifejackets!

Swim. I just watch people swim. There was intermittent raining when we went.

By the way, be careful with the pathways when wet. They were slippery. I slipped, I fell flat on my back. Thanks to my natural cushion (read: big butt) I only got a bruised ego. Ha!

We left early so we still had time to catch the sunset at the boardwalk in Cloud 9. We took a short cut from our cottage to the main road but it turned out to be a farther route to the boardwalk.

The mistake led us to this shore which was a nice detour.

After walking miles (it felt like that), we are finally here! Ha!

The introverts picked a floor in the deck with less crowd and watch the sunset and the surfers.

When evening came, we went to Mama’s Grill for dinner and then headed home to our rented cottage.

Day 4

We already arranged with the tricycle driver we hired the previous day to get us to Magpupungko. We planned to go to Magpupungko in the morning and go island hopping in the afternoon. Our tricycle driver suggested that we drop by Tayangban Cave Pool since it is along the way to Magpupungko. We were glad we listened to our driver because we enjoyed our time there. Entrance to the cave pool is only Php 70 per person and there is a guide who will help you navigate though the cave system. I really enjoyed this activity. I would say this is Siargao’s best kept secret.
Look at our beaming faces!

Once we were done with the spelunking, we were off to Magpupungko.

I love Magpupungko. In Magpupungko are tide pools left by the ocean when tides are low. Sea water and creatures are trapped inside the natural pools. My camera batteries needed recharging so I was not able to take my own photos in Magpupungko so I swiped off Arnel’s photos. ha! Enjoy!


We enjoyed out time there. We left when more people started arriving. Ha! Introvert problems.

Off to island hopping!

Our driver already arranged our boat for island hopping. It cost us Php 1,500 per boat. We will be visiting three islands: Naked, Dako and Guyam. Since we have not eaten our lunch yet, we bought pizzas from Aventino’s before going island hopping (there is so many branches in Siargao) which we ate at Guyam. We spent a lot of time swimming in Guyam.

It was already late in the afternoon when we decided to end our island hopping journey.

For dinner, we ate at Bravo. It was suggested by our Airbnb host, Martim. I love the vibe there.
After dinner, we headed back to our rented cottage to pack our things.

The following day was a long day. We spent the day traveling. We needed to go to the port in Dapa early to get tickets for the boat ride to Surigao. The boat left Dapa at around 11 am and we arrived Surigao past 1:00 pm. We were met by our friend, Bryan, for lunch. We also met up with friends while in Surigao so we left Surigao at around 4:00 pm and arrived Butuan past 7pm.

Some notes on the trip:
1. We love the services provided by Cinnamon Island in Sohoton.
2. We love our Airbnb cottage. I left a review on Airbnb and the host gave his feedback. He said that we were a nice group, very relaxed and independent. Ha! This clearly shows that we are introverts. We just like to be left alone. Hehehe
3. If I have the chance to go back to Siargao, I would skip Sugba Lagoon but I will still go back to Magpupungko. I learned from a friend that one can do Stand Up Paddle near the mangroves in Cloud 9. I will do that instead.
4. I made a mistake of renting a paddle board at the tourism office in Del Carmen. There are paddle boards for rent at the lagoon at a cheaper rate.
5. It used to take us 2 hours to reach Surigao from Butuan by bus. Now it takes 3.5 hours.
6. We did not choose the cheapest rates in the Siargao. Instead, we chose the hassle-free and most comfortable options we can afford.
7. Siargao is also a party place. Our friend, Bryan, would encourage us to go out at night and find the venue of the party of the day but the introverts just wanted to chill in the cottage and fiddle with the gadgets.

Here is our itinerary and the amount we spent on some of our activities:

 

** entire tour package: Port transfer, island hopping, accommodation, 4 meals, welcome snack and drink
*** Habal-habal ride within General Luna costs Php20 per person
**** I forgot how much we spent for food. We are all foodies so we really do not scrimp on spending for food.
***** I also forgot how much the bus ride cost.

Three days and 4 nights in the Airbnb Cottage cost Php 4,115.

Total trip cost: At least 7,788.33 per person (Food in Siargao was unaccounted because I forgot how much it cost us.)

It was an exhausting trip back home but I will take the trip again in a heartbeat if I get invited to go to Siargao.

If you have not been to Siargao or Sohoton, you must visit soon!

Some photos were taken by my friends, Bryan, Arnel and Gail. Thank you for being my cool travel buddies!
Btw, send me an email if you want a link to Airbnb which will give you discount on your first booking.

Oh, this is my travel video of that trip. Enjoy!

I have a YouTube Channel!

Three weeks ago, I decided to set up my YouTube Channel.  Clicking on the YouTube icon above will direct you to my channel.

So what do I have there? For now, I have three painting videos which you can follow to learn some of my techniques. This is my way of sharing what I know. This is also my way of giving back.  It was through a YouTube video that triggered my renewed interest in painting. I know that videos can be very helpful to others in pursuing their interests.  I know how videos helped me improve in painting.

In the future, I plan to include travel videos, recipe videos and just  about anything I want to share. I am still new to this and I hope I will be able to improve my videos as I go along.  Oh, there is so much to learn about making my videos better and I am excited to try them!  Please subscribe to my channel and let me know what you think of them.

These are the first three videos up on the channel. Enjoy!

OPPO F1s: #FeedGoals

When I signed up for Instagram three years ago, I had no idea it would grow this big. I was not even into it because I was more inclined to use Facebook. Lately though, I have been very active with Instagram compared to Facebook mainly because the pretty images I get from the feeds can truly make my day a lot brighter.  It is my happy place and I hope it remains as such.

I never really put much thought in what I share on Instagram until I found several feeds that are truly #FeedGoals. Look at these!

#FeedGoals

Notice that the first feed by @boywithhaemoglobin is all about architectural details which we sometimes overlook. These are things he noticed in the surroundings that might have escaped the untrained eye.  The second one by @studiodiy are pops of colors which can easily cheer anyone with a gloomy day. Are you not inspired by such photos?  I know I am.

So I have been experimenting on what I can do to my feed. I am all about art, travel, food and life in between.  One would find this set of photos in my feed whenever I am working on my art.

Art-centric feed

And when I am traveling, this is how my feed looks.

Travel-centric feed

My #FeedGoals would be to combine all my interests into one cohesive feed and do them instinctively.  I love feeds that tell stories like what my cousin, @kristineghia, and friend, @sandierpastures, do to their feeds. @KristineGhia often shares her journey with her faith, health and family. There is consistency in the way her images are presented. My friend, @sandierpastures, shares her journey with her kids in and out of Dubai where she is based.

How do I achieve my #FeedGoals?

  1. Finding a theme. Since I am into art, travel , food and anything in between. I need to find a balance between such diverse interests.
  2. Being consistent with the filters. It may take time to find the right kind of feel to the image composition that I like but once I find it, I should stick with it.
  3. Sharing the experience. Write the caption to tell a story of each image. This will engage followers into meaningful conversations
  4. Experimenting. I should always be inspired with the things I see around me. As much as consistency is important, I must not be afraid to veer away from what I am used to and try new things.
  5. Having fun. I may have #feedgoals to achieve. I need not stress over it. I will just enjoy Instagram and, surely, the experience would be more enjoyable that way.
  6. Getting a better device. I am thinking about the features of OPPO F1S.  It is dubbed as a selfie expert.  Although I do not need to pepper my posts with my selfies, I am assured I’d get a good one when necessary.  The OPPO F1s  has filters that will help me attain consistency in my IG posts.  The 13MP rear camera and 16MP front camera  make sure that I get crisp photos that are IG-worthy. These are ust few of the exciting features packed in one compact device! OPPOF1s is the perfect partner to achieve my #feedgoals.

More information on the device can be found on their website: OPPO Philippines. Do not forget to like or follow them on their social media accounts:

Twitter: twitter.com/OPPOPhilippines
Instagram: www.instagram.com/oppophilippines
Facebook:  www.facebook.com/OPPOPH

Keep creating those lovely feeds!

Create. Post. Rinse. Repeat.

*This is a contest entry for Nuffnang Philippines.

 

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