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Monday, December 26, 2011

The last couple of weeks of 2011 zoomed right past me. Slowly, I will absorb the impact of all that has happened - a lot of which were very sad. My lola passed away. Typhoon Sendong ravaged CDO. My bag was stolen on Christmas day. All of those things didn't really leave much room for Christmas. But that wondrous feeling is inching its way back to me. Late night talks with my mom. Being with friends. A hug. A happy thought. Seeing ideas come to life. There is hope yet. And today, I stumbled upon this wonderful new video from one of the Filipino fashion brands I truly admire. Filip+Inna.

The effort they put into designing the clothes and having them made by the marginalized ethnic groups of Lake Sebu is admirable. But what I love more is that the clothes are amazing. This kind of passion lights me up. I'm happy that they finally have a site up too! So now, you can easily contact and order from them. Check out their website and their latest collection here:

We aim to revive and preserve hand embroidery and beadwork as a means of income generation, preventing it from becoming another lost art. We work with an amazing group of talented artisans, mostly women who have had traditional weaving techniques passed down through their families for generations. 

From our hands to yours, may the beauty and depth of each garment bring a profound appreciation for what is distinctly Filipino.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

I knew that our country was the birthplace of the first-ever midget action star, Weng Weng. I knew that our country was chosen by Francis Ford Coppola for his film, "Apocalypse Now" because it looked a lot like Vietnam. But this aspect of Philippine filmmaking, I did not know about: 
How shall I describe this piece of knoweledge? Funny? Disturbing? I believe this will go down in the annals of history as part of the most humiliating (yet hilarious) things we did for Americans. I would very much like a copy. For now, I'll leave you with the official poster and documentary synopsis. 

Machete Maidens Unleashed! is the first detailed examination and celebration of Filipino genre filmmaking - a world where stunt men came cheap, plot was obsolete and the make-up guy was packin' heat!

From the early '70s well into the '90s the Philippines was a back-lot for a bevy of renegade B-movie makers and cinema visionaries alike. The country was utilized for its inexpensive labour, exotic locations and distinct lack of rules. A tidal schlock-wave of genre work emerged that somehow managed to capture the raw, chaotic energy of contemporary Filipino culture. These productions (a cavalcade of monster movies, jungle prison movies, blaxploitation and kung fu hybrids) were miraculously made at a time when the country's political situation was repressive at best. But, this was a revolution that even the Marcos dictatorship couldn't crush!

A big thanks to Mark Olivan for linking it to me!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Despite living beside an MRT stop, I missed, "Rock the Riles" yesterday. I wish I could split myself into two sometimes. Instead of beating myself up for being busy (remember, busy is good), I'll just feel the vibe by watching this video collaboration to honor Rizal on his 150th year.
With the support of the National Historical Commission of the Philippines, the artists of ROCK ED PHILIPPINES got together to produce this song. Many many artists came together for this piece. The animated video was created by Arnold Arre. The song was composed by Francis de Veyra of RadioactiveSagoProject. Lyrics by Gang Badoy of Rock Ed. The song is part of Rock Ed's ROCK RIZAL album, a collection of songs in celebration of the 150th birth anniversary of Filipino hero Jose Rizal.
Music composed by Francis De Veyra. Lyrics by Gang Badoy. The singing by Rock Ed musicians - Aia de Leon, Vin Dancel, Ebe Dancel, Kris Dancel, Noel Cabangon, Lourd de Veyra, Gloc 9, Raimund Marasigan, Kakoy Legaspi, Jay Gapasin, Juan Miguel Lerma, Arwin Naval, Wowee Pards and more. Produced by Shinji Tanaka and Mark Laccay.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

I got my first big present this Christmas! 
Check out my snazzy new iPad case from HIDE Leatherworks!
Ok, it's not really a big present. I worked hard for this iPad leather case. It's part of my new advocacy where I help friendly startup businesses and social entrepreneurs with their advertising. I do copy consultancy and I also hook them up with willing ad collaborators. 

For HIDE, I came up with the brand name and also wrote their ideology. It came easy for me because I was there when it was conceptualized and I understood the aspirations of the makers. They wanted to bring modern leather bag design to Manila, while using Philippine leather and Filipino craftsmen. It's a very commendable idea and I'm hoping the brand flies. If so, I'll get to do more than smize (See photo above). I'll get to work on some direct marketing effort and videos. Exciting times! 

So do check out HIDE for sleek and classy, genuine leather sleeves/cases that are form fitting and specially tailor-made for your iPad, Macbook Pro 15" and 13", iPhone and Amazon Kindle 4.

Photographs by the multi-talented Marlo Ongpin

Thursday, December 1, 2011

I stumbled upon Soleil Ignacio's work on Mega. She's a Filipino illustrator with a penchant for drawing beautiful topless girls with big hair. Her words, not mine. Check out how she styled Pinoy celebrities in glamorous high fashion. It is pure eye candy- the perfect kick to get me out of my fashion rut. 

The Eugene Domingo in Alexander McQueen
Sweet Anne Curtis in Louis Vuitton 
Fab Jinky Pacquiao in Chanel (At first glance, I thought it was Agot Isidro though)
The young Imelda Marcos in Christian Dior. 
Judy Ann Santos in Lanvin (Also a dead ringer for KC Concepcion.)
A strikingly skinny Kris Aquino in Valentino 
Last but not least, Nora Aunor in Prada. Ate Guy never looked chicer.  

Check out Soleil Ignacio's portfolio on Behance!