Reflect: Welcome to the New School

mano amiga campus

When in Manila, I try to work on projects I am passionate about. One of them is Mano Amiga Academy, a non-profit school, that is currently raising funds to build their first full-scale campus next year.

I’ve been inspired and volunteering with them for around 5 years already at their temporary space in Taguig. The founder and executive director, Lynn Pinugu, is also a good friend whom I’ve seen put a lot of hard work into this. (Read an article I wrote about Lynn when I first met her) And now, with their own land situated in Parañaque, she is set to really execute her vision 100%.

I posted a photo of the school plans on Instagram/FB today and the response has been overwhelming. I think that this school really has the potential to change the education models in the Philippines, especially for underprivileged kids. I always tell people to imagine an international school, with 100% scholars; adopting the standards of the IS schools to students from low-income families. That is what Mano Amiga aims to be. Building a new future may take time, but it’s definitely worth the wait. xxx

Watch: Kendrick Lamar MTV Interview

I spent a good few hours replaying this because first off, I haven’t really heard an interview from MTV like this in a while. I had the impression that they mostly showed reality shows and seeing this on YouTube blew my mind! (+ points for modern media.)

Secondly, I always knew that Kendrick was a profound rapper, but to hear some of his insights on life in this interview really bumped him up my favorites list. When I hear artists in hip-hop speak vulnerably about what they’ve been through, I think, “Now he’s doin something special there.”

In a humble and reflective way, they use their experience to create something beautiful and honest. It’s something that disregards differences and makes you relate on a human level. That makes artists real artists for me, not some marketed product from a company.

Check out his interview here and I posted the rest of the videos after the jump…

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Photos: Tattoo Envy at Geisha Ink

Got major tattoo envy when I passed by the Geisha Ink exhibit at Kee club last night. New York-based photographer Reka Nyari showcased her portraits of Akuma Suicide, who was dressed fully in her own intricately detailed tattoos. Hold your breath for more beauty after the jump…

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Attend: Alpha Omega ADD

invite1

Manila, Philippines

Last night was a big night for two important people in my life. Archie, a homie for almost 8 years now, had his solo exhibit entitled “Alpha Omega ADD,” hosted by my sister Teresa’s company, Collective 88.

From first taking inspiration from graffiti culture and society, to now looking inward at his own experiences, Archie has definitely grown as an artist since I first met him. The external-internal shift has caused him to create from a space of peace, according to our last conversation.

Meanwhile, Ter has always been passionate about art and design. Growing up, I would always see her paint or go to exhibits when she wasn’t working on a shoot or a show. She started Collective 88, an art & design company, a few years ago to discover and support emerging artists from the Philippines. From commissioning artists for hotels & casinos (like Solaire) to now hosting exhibits for artists, Teresa is evolving too.

And because they are both close to me, I helped write the exhibit brief and artist bio for the press… Read more and see more after the jump…

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Reflect x Work: Self-Love

Here’s a post that has to do with some work I did + a ton of reflection-a throwback to the article I wrote for Rappler over 2 years ago on the importance of self-love.

This morning, I was reflecting on that concept because my room mate and I decided to create a “100 days of Self Love” challenge. Basically, we do something everyday that is an act of self-love; whether it’s consciously eating well or doing that one hour of yoga.

The idea stemmed from seeing these “100 happy days” posts on Instagram, and I wanted to put my own spin to it. (However, I’m not posting this challenge online because it’s just a nice, private, roomie ritual that we do and discuss at home.)

I remembered this article I wrote back when I was still living in Singapore. Those days, I was learning A LOT of life lessons about myself and about growing up. But it seems like this concept of self-love is something I will never stop learning about.

Read the Full Article Below…

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