Sunday, August 11, 2013

July 20, 2013 Saturday Market at Escolta

Lauren Villarama, one of our active Urban Sketcher suggested that we join the occasional flea market in one of the old district of Manila along Escolta st. last July 20. This was organized by the 98B Collaborative who describe themselves as  a “multi-disciplinary art COLLABoratory” that aims to provide a venue where artists, curators, designers, educators, film makers, musicians, performers, researchers, students, writers, and other creative individuals can brainstorm, collaborate, and interact.

In April of this year, 98B starteda revival of  the vibrancy of Escolta, Manila by organizing the first “Saturday Market @ Escolta.” The venue was at barren ground floor area of the building.

The crowd who went there was surprisingly a lot, and USk Philippines enjoyed quite the exposure to a few hundred people who are interested in the concept of sketch walks. We got a few interested organizations as well for possible joint projects. Well, here's to hoping then coming true.

June 29, 2013 At the Pasig City Hall Roof Garden Sketching the Metro Manila Skyline

Carlo Martinez is an architect for the city hall's architecture division. For the past few years, this city hall die on was to implement sustainable designs, and one such project was their building to become an example. They've installed a rainwater re-use system and converted the rooftop as a usable events open space.

It also offers a nice vantage view of the other city skylines of Mandaluyong, Makati and Manila



Wednesday, August 7, 2013

May 25 2013 Sketching at the Rizal Park, Manila

It was a clear day, and May's sketch theme was parks. It's also our 2nd anniversary for USk Philippines.

Hictorically, the part of Rizal Park we were sketching was planned to be the new Capitol of Manila, designed by American urban planner Daniel Burnham before World War II.Only 2 buildings got built - the Department of Tourism and Finance Building in the Neo-Classical style similar to the Washington D.C.and Chicago government buildings of USA. About 3 more government buildings never saw light, and it the planned reflective pool became a relief map of the Philippines, and in the 70s & 80s with a skating rink and a gigantic globe in the middle. The globe disappeared and presently has been replaced with the site of Datu Lapu-Lapu who killed Spanish Explorer, Ferdinand Magellan, who claimed the Philippines for Spain in the 16th Century.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Sketching at the University of Santo Tomas last March 23, 2013

March is the start of Summer in the Philippines. It's now scorching to above 35°C! We decided to push through with visiting the oldest existing learning institution, the University of Santo Tomas in Manila. The 400 year old university has a museum. We had planned to sketch some of the collections in the morning, but had to postponed it to layer that afternoon due to a closed poetry recital. Naturally, we sketched what interested us at the campus.

We had lunch at one of the restaurants in the campus, and the 5 of us out of the 10 who attended that morning stayed to visit the museum to sketch.

We had a fun time sketching the Natural History section where the collection of animal specimens were found . They weren't moving which made them easier to sketch. 

Monday, March 4, 2013

Sketching Quiapo

Last February saw the cooperation of 4 organizations that to put up a sketch crawl or walk in one of Manila's old prominent district of Quiapo in Manila. Re+Discover Manila, who is currently running a series of arts events to reignite the interest of Manila; with the Bahay Nakpil-Bautista Foundation for the venue; the Heritage Conservation Society Youth who orchestrated the program, brunch and a film show + lecture on old Manila; and Urban Sketchers Philippines who provided a workshop on basic sketching skills, had organized the event with some 30 participants. Times Trading, distributor of Artline, Maped and Colleen Colored Pencils , provided some sketching kits.

The Quiapo district was where the Illustrados built there city mansions away from their farms. They built some of the most beautiful houses during the rule of the Spanish. The event was a chance to see some of the existing structures and capture them on paper.

Most of these are in sad state and rented out to tenants who haphazardly modified some parts of the structures. The private sector has been initiating efforts in the awareness of these old rich cultural heritage sectors of the city. Sketching provides a level of seeing, thinking and feeling of such places. After brunch, we had a short talk down memory lane of how Manila was before the war and a film show. This was one more memorable session. A culminating ceremony organized by Re+Discover Manila will be held around May, and would showcase some of our sketchbooks.