1. What’s your story? Where are you from?
I’m based in Melbourne, Australia but I was born in Quezon City, Philippines. I remember having a very lonely childhood and I would spend a lot of time daydreaming. I look back and think that maybe that’s how I developed my imagination. I was also very quiet. I liked to observe people and eavesdrop on adult conversations. I had an awkward upbringing. I felt like an outsider most of the time. I would try to fit in but whenever I think about it, the memories would make me cringe.
My interest in art started when my relatives who were living in the U.S. brought back several stacks of comic books. I remember I used to look at the art but didn’t care to read the text. My uncle also had an influence on me when I was young. He was the only artist I knew while growing up and I remember the first time I saw his work I was blown away. He was reclusive so he didn’t have much of a commercial presence but even now when I look back at his work, I can definitely say he was an excellent artist. After that I was obsessed in learning how to create art. It was a slow and frustrating journey for me; I had to learn that I had to identify and accept my individuality before anything honest can come out of my work. I was never motivated by money but my need for acceptance really got in the way of being comfortable with expressing my own voice. In saying all of that, I’m happy to be where I am now.
2. Tell us about your aesthetic.
I’ve always wanted to be a realistic or naturalistic artist but after years of trying, I realised that I didn’t have the patience for it and I greatly admire anyone who can do that style well. Right now, whenever this question comes up, I would say I have an abstract and surrealistic style with a dream-like atmosphere. I like using shapes and contort them like clouds or fluids that linger across space. I think it gives my work a sense of movement. I also like having a more organic feel to my work. I add some grain and textures to make it feel more tactile. My mood often has a huge effect on my work, it dictates that colours, the lighting and so on but my goal, at least for now, has always been to make it feel like a dream.
3. What is your favourite medium and why?
I love working in Cinema 4d and Octane. I also studied film and love cinematography. I served as a cinematographer for a number of short films and I still have aspirations in continuing it when the time comes. The reason why I bring this up is when I work in Cinema 4d and Octane I feel like I’m on set. I use mostly the same principles I’ve learned in lighting and composition then combine it with what I learned as a graphic designer. It’s so much fun for me.
4. What is your artistic process like?
I have a routine that I try to follow everyday. Generally I don’t have much of a plan of what I’m going to do until I sit down and start moving the mouse. Sometimes I do have a certain technique that I want to try and experiment with and see what comes out of it. I think the best way I can describe it is, imagine you’re going on a road trip but you don’t know specifically where you want to go but you have an idea of where you want to be. Sometimes you end up exactly where you want to go, or close enough, but sometimes you see something on the road and instead follow that direction and end up somewhere, while not exactly where you thought you’d be but you’re happy you found it.
5. Who and/or what inspires your work?
There are so many artists that I take inspiration from and not only in visual arts but also in music. When I first started in 3d it was Mike Winkelmann, Joey Camacho and Stuart Lippincott. Right now, as I aim to develop my own voice, the things that inspire me are cinema, philosophy and psychology.
6. What role does art play in your life? How does it change the way you view the world?
It really has given me a structure to which I can grow and evolve in. It also has given me something to strive for; to see how far you can go if you truly commit to the work, take it seriously and keep yourself balanced.
7. Where did you study?
I studied graphic design at the Billy Blue College of Design in Sydney and I also studied film at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology in Melbourne, Australia.
8. Where do you see yourself in five years?
I hope to have my own studio where I can develop and work on different art and film projects.
9. What about in ten?
I hope to have a feature film by then.
10. What do you hope to achieve with your art?
Right now, I hope that it inspires people or make them feel something that was lost or forgotten or maybe even invigorate them in creating something better.
11. Now, tell us a little more about you as a person: what is your favourite food?
I love all kinds of food but if I had to choose one it has to be Japanese food. Also burgers, I love a good burger.
12. Favourite book?
Animal Farm by George Orwell
13. Favourite genre of music?
I love all sorts of music from Kamasi Washington, Rage Against the Machine, Bon Iver, alt-J, the Beatles, Ludovico Einaudi, David Bowie, Led Zeppelin, the Eraserheads, Daft Punk, Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross… so many.
14. What are your hobbies?
Is trying new food considered a hobby? If not then video games. I have a PS4 and a Switch. I mostly play RPG or action games like the Witcher 3 and the Ghost of Tsushima. I also love crafting games like Stardew Valley and Animal Crossing.
15. If you weren’t an artist, what would you be?
A bum. No, just kidding. I don’t know, sometimes when my wife and I would watch Gordon Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares I would say I would’ve been a good chef; she doesn’t react when I say it though.