A 7-member of the Singaporean Urban Sketchers group had visited us for a 5-day filled with sketching activities in various parts of Metro Manila. Tony Chua, Ignatius Yeo, Lisa Huang, Wee Teck Ong, Tan Chit Seng, Edric Hsu, and Milo Sudaria sketched partied with fellow Urban Sketchers Philippine members.
Day 1, Monday, April 7 SM Megamall art galleries. Our visitors arrived and were met with USk PH members Eileen Escueta and Carlo Aces at this shopping mall.
Day 2, Tuesday, April 8 Intramuros - the old Spanish wall-fortified city. We first sketched the Manila Cathedral which was still closed due to some improvements. We then sketched the one of the Philippines' World Heritage Baroque churches, the San Agustin church. Lunch was held at the Intramuros hotel restaurant. The sketching day ended at the Fort Santiago, the Spanish barracks at the time with an overview of the estuary of the Pasig river.
Day 3, Wednesday, April 9 Visit to the Yuchengco Museum.
Day 4, Thursday, April 10 Visit to the Carriedo fountain as the symbol of Manila's modern piped water system, followed by a visit to the Binondo area; Escolta avenue, Manila's first business center; the El Hogar Filipino building, a century-old historical building in danger of being demolished; and lastly the University of Santo tomas, the 400-year-old+ and oldest university in Asia.
Day 5, Friday, April 11 San Sebatian church, the only all-steel century-old church in Asia; Quiapo, the old rich residential district of Manila; Quiapo church; the Metropolitan Theatre, a beautiful Art-Deco building built in the 1930s; and finally the Main Post Office Building. There were more places we wanted to show our visitors, but we essentially ended up scheduling these places near to each other for that day.
We wanted to show our visitors the beauty and the state of decay of our city, and some of the goodness some private communities are trying to do to arrest those decays.
Our Singaporean visitors were high in sketching spirits. It was a refreshing eye-opener for some of Filipino sketchers. The enthusiastic characters of our Singaporean friends were simply staggering. They were literally sketching as much as they could, even during our breaks. It 's relatively refreshing to see.