New things

Another week has passed. I tried to start the week by logging down what happened each day, but I didn’t manage to write anything after Tuesday, so this would be a slightly lopsided account of the week that was! Top highlights from last week:

  1. Started a new blog (! It’s a place where I’ll write about design, UI/UX, and other career/work-related things. I think it’s more organised to keep it separate from this blog. Please follow if it sounds like the kind of thing you’d be into! My second post is a recap of the Design Bootcamp Asia event that I attended last Thursday.
  2. Met Lauren Tsai from Terrace House AS! ❤ She’s so nice and pretty IRL
  3. Started playing Pocket Animal Crossing (Add me: 6353 1735 183)

Read More »


Some design-related lessons this week

Processed with VSCO with s2 preset
From the Health by Design event

Lists are awesome. I can make a list of why lists are great. Item no.1: it’s a good way to organise one’s thoughts! And I have a lot of that from this week. I attended 3 workshops/talks, saw web things that I really like, and had some unique, er, experiences. Let’s jump in.

Read More »

Things I Learned from the Tribute Page Challenge in FreeCodeCamp

FreeCodeCamp is a great website that lets you learn coding, among many other things. In between lessons it provides challenges to test what you’ve learned. At the end of the Bootstrap lesson are two challenges, the first of which is to create a tribute page in

When I got to this part, my Twitter feed was full of praises for Hidilyn Diaz, a 25 yr. old woman who won the Philippines a medal in the Rio Olympics. I took it as a sign – and so I made a tribute page for her. Here’s what I did:

Read More »

Local Talent

parkour at mrt
Illustration 1.0 – the fifth circle of hell, probably. (Photo by Edmer Bade)

The Filipinos are highly creative people. (It takes a certain level of creativity to try and find the good in the bad, like Filipinos tend to do.) This week, I accidentally stumbled upon some insanely talented folks who happened to hail from the same island as I do.

Music: Paolo Arciga

 i know it’s gonna be a long way down
but i’ll be on my feet again, soon

This song has been stuck in my head for days now, I kid you not. It’s no secret that Filipinos are great singers, but this is very far from the usual Whitney Houston/Beyoncé/Journey karaoke classics. His music holds back from all that intensity while still maintaining the sincere, unfiltered emotions. In My Blood is very optimistic, but in a sad way (lol). Check out more of his work on his soundcloud.

Art: Sasha Martinez

Screen Shot 2016-07-23 at 7.38.17 PM.png

Ahhh I recently just discovered her work while lurking the Instagram’s Explore/Discover tab. Everything is so lovely and otherworldly and very, well, tumblr (if you know what I mean). It’s like A Softer World (RIP) meets the Citadel. Her journals are my favorite. I think it’s a really nice way to organize stuff you couldn’t let go of because of sentimental value (concert and movie tickets, love notes, etc). Very inspiring stuff.

Design: James Cabrera

The Refinery29 brand is far from perfect, but in spite of its unparalleled obsession with the Kardashians, its problematic and clickbait-y headlines, I adore it. So when I found out (not sure how), that one of the designers of their app is a Filipino, I felt proud (don’t ask me why, okay, it’s a Filipino thing. See: pinoy pride). It’s even more inspiring to read about their process. From their Research Phase, to establishing KPIs, to finding a way to bring delight.

What an eye candy!

There’s definitely more local talented people out there, I’m sure. These are just the ones I stumbled upon this week alone. Looking forward to discovering more in the weeks to come ❤

Moodboard: Not-so Neutral



One perk of getting older is that you get a better idea of what you like and don’t like. It did not escape me that all the things I’ve been browsing recently have the same look and feel — all neutral tones and feminine styles (florals and skirts all day, everyday).

So I felt I just had to do this moodboard. Enjoy!

Design Agency: Saturday StudioThe simplicity and elegance of their work make me feel a certain type of way.

Blog: the leedayStumbled upon this blog just recently, and I am happy (slash ashamed) to report that I’ve read every single blog post here. The nice pictures and the lovely cafés… these are the stuff of dreams.

Shameless plug: my own websiteI designed and developed this under construction page, okay. It’s going to be updated real soon, so maybe watch out for that.

Designer: Amber AsaySo many eye candies!

Style: totally crushing on this skirt from ZaloraI plan to buy this in at least 2 different colors. I need it in my life.

Website: Hart & Vine. Aside from their divine logo, their website is so tastefully designed! It’s inspiring.




Self-studying Design and Other Things

After graduating from college almost two years ago (damn it, I feel so old), I made a personal vow to never stop learning. I enrolled myself in an Intro to Finance class in Coursera (from design to finance – go figure), and I made it through the end, except for one little thing: the Final Exam LOL.

But, it was a great experience. The most challenging part with self-studying is actually sticking with it ’till the end because you go at your own pace. You don’t really need to follow a strict schedule like in university. Fast forward to now: I’ve come across various methods of free online self-studying (Coursera is obvs great so I won’t include it here), and here are just some of my thoughts on it:

Read More »

I Saw Design… Articles

(Note: I spent my entire commute home thinking of a title for this post and I’m super proud of what I came up with, okay. Except it turns out a lot of people have thought of this punny phrase before GDI.)

Here’s a roundup of some interesting internet things that I’ve found during my recent travels around the world wide web. This time it’s all about articles (or essays, or thinkpieces, whatever ya wanna call it).

Your logo is making me sick! – UX MAG

TL;DR: Don’t use your logo in error messages/screens if you don’t want your users to associate it with their frustrations.

This light but informative article from UX Magazine uses the term ‘brand poisoning‘ in which negative scenarios are wrongly branded. Humans are highly visual, thus the ‘blue screen of death‘ and the rainbow wheel of death’, so prominently placing your logo (as seen in the example above) in cases like these is not a good idea. Instead, the designers should at least find a way to make the experience suck less, like so:

No internet connection? No problem, says Google Chrome.

Read More »

Celebrating World Information Architecture Day

Ever had those moments when you’re reviewing for an exam and you just get overwhelmed by all the things you just re-learned? Or those times when you just have too many tabs open and you don’t even know where to start?

No? Just me? Ok.

Well, this is called information overload (or infobesity, or infoxication according to my dear ol’ wiki). Imagine this situation, multiplied a hundred times across communities – this is why Information Architecture exists.

Inside the National Design Centre – Singapore’s venue for this year’s World IA Day

So what exactly is Information Architecture?

Information architecture (IA) focuses on organizing, structuring, and labeling content in an effective and sustainable way.  The goal is to help users find information and complete tasks.  To do this, you need to understand how the pieces fit together to create the larger picture, how items relate to each other within the system. (source)

Basically: IA is the practice of bringing order to chaos. Or, more relevantly: the practice of getting shit together.

Read More »


graphika manila day 2

(Continued from Day 1)

Experiment, reflect, and experiment some more.

You can tell from the way Gemma O’Brien talks that she is a very experienced speaker (she knows where to stand so that the arrow in the slide points to her, little things like that).

#SPEWBAGCHALLENGE: Gemma O’Brien writes witty vomit-related puns on spew bags found in airplanes. (Image credit:

Her career started when she dropped out of law school to pursue her love for typography and design. She started a blog called For the Love of Type where she geeks out about typography (obviously) under the code name Mrs. Eaves (yes, in reference to the Mrs. Eaves typeface). Someone found her blog post, invited her to talk in some typography-related event, one thing led to another, and now she’s designing album covers for artists like Troye Sivan.

What I like about Gemma’s story is that she never let the success of whatever she does hinder her from experimenting with other things. She has tried everything: from watercolor illustrations, to pen illustrations, to typography with illustrations, to murals, and even vomit bags. Constantly pushing oneself outside of the comfort zone — I think that’s a great way to live, whether you are a graphic designer or not.

Read More »

Lessons from Graphika Manila 2016 (Day 1)

Spent the entire weekend at SMX in Mall of Asia for this year’s Graphika Manila. Attending this event makes me feel that the future of graphic design here in the Philippines is promising, and it also makes me feel hella old (most of the attendees are university kids aiming for extra credit – my friend and I were like: who the hell are these kids and where are their parents?! lol).

graphika manila
Event branding by the Patrick Cabral

Unfortunately, we were only able to attend the afternoon sessions (one can only fit so much into two work-free days) but in spite of this, we left the place with a heavy dose of designspiration and career insights from the awesome speakers.

Read More »