What's the point of painting studies? + life

Beginning of jan 2019, i got so bummed out. can’t paint anything. Delayed my commissions (So grateful to have understanding clients). I was in a deep rut hole.

To make myself get back in the grind. I reminisced my experience of being in a rut in the past, I tried to dig out what made me get into the grind. I came into two choices:

1) look into my favourite artists’ work and get inspired or

2) copy my favourite artist’s work for study.

look below to see which one I chose ( spoiler alert it’s #2)

Top: 1st study - didn’t come out right  Right: 2nd try - same study diff colour choices.  bottom: 3rd attempt (getting better!)

Top: 1st study - didn’t come out right

Right: 2nd try - same study diff colour choices.

bottom: 3rd attempt (getting better!)


The trauma on landscapes haunted me when I failed my painting subject in high school and then I still get low grades on my painting class during college. I thought i’m set for failure if i still go into landscapes. I proved myself wrong 10 years later until 2018, when i first took the leap to try on landscape painting.

I know myself my learning pace isn’t amazing. I learn things through repeating things over and over again. At this rate you know how much failure i’ve experienced until it is normal to have now.

I am a big big fan of kazuo oga’s work. He’s paintings are such a great material to study.

I am a big big fan of kazuo oga’s work. He’s paintings are such a great material to study.

If you are currently in a rut or perhaps no motivation? Set a goal in doing studies and don’t expect some magic to happen. It take time to make the fire spark again. Patience and persistence. Two powerful keys in pursuing into what you’re passionate about.

Looking back to 2017 - grateful to be alive.

I miss blogging I really do. Blogging used to be my tiny hobby since college. This new year- hopefully I could spend more time to keep this blog space alive. 


Not everyone know that I left my full time job as a school teacher in Brunei to fully commit in a career that I've planned to do since 5 years ago.  

I was a high school teacher for a good 2 years. Wasn't trained to be one but I happened to be accepted. Didn't really like the job but for a half day work and more pay during the holidays, why not lol 

I taught Social Studies on year 7 ;)

I taught Social Studies on year 7 ;)


And so I finally quit being a teacher at the end of 2016, That is when I fully commit myself into being a illustrator in 2017 - guess that's a huge step for me to take in my life. 

Another highlight of the year is that I got married to my best friend of 10 years. I can tell you that our marriage is really isn't typical, at least that's what I found out so far.  But we're happy ;) 

To begin with, I knew freelancing life ain't easy. I knew there will be some shit going to happen. What I didn't expect that it affected my mental health badly.

Not going to lie, I've had a fair share of down times - financially. Most of my savings before I left my full time went to the apartment deposit and my spouse visa fees (blog post coming soon). Sure, It was a hell of a blow. Before I knew it, the stress affected my body, especially the horrible breakouts around my jawline that really brings my confidence down. I was stubborn to spend money on a derm. Because I was already broke! 

It is even difficult for me to share this to the world. But I choose to! 

Aug 2017- before I went to see the dermatologist.

Aug 2017- before I went to see the dermatologist.


 Finally convinced myself to visit a derm. Currently I'm almost at month 2 in iso-tretinoin. My breakouts were way lesser than before and I can worry less now.  Who would've known that acne really can ruin innocent lives. le sigh.



What is the good out of my 2017?  

I learned to love myself - be easy on myself.  Take advantages out of a bad situation, make out of it. And lastly, friendships can be found when you less know it - markets, workshops, restaurants, etc.

2018, I'm moving towards on making content on my youtube channel , I've always wanted to experience in making videos and random Vlogs. There are a lot of adventure's that I may not be able to do ( passport issues) ,I believe I could create something exciting for myself to be able to know to live life fuller. 


My goal on 2018 is to be confident in my own skin. Be positive and not to compare with others. To be open to more opportunities and always be grateful that I'm still alive being a freelancer.


More ideas for my blog in future I believe. As it can be as my journal.  However, this time, a rather disorganized post, lost to catch up probably. I'm not one of a writer type of person. I'll improve next time! 

I'm going to end this post with 3 things i'm grateful for: 

  1. Being able to eat healthy on a budget.
  2. Having that fire. Keeping that 'fire' in me burning.
  3. Having these setbacks that made me stronger.

What are your 3 things you are grateful for? 


Till then,



August doodles : skulls + life

   August was a rather harsh month. Like a roller-coaster ride, travelling down the tracks endlessly with no end in sight. To pick up my brush to paint something leaving me feeling frustrated. Mind you I am pretty stubborn enough in my pursuit of art, until I realised I have reached the burnout limit.

My better half gave me advice to take a week away from painting. However, took me a while to get convinced that I need a break. Mainly because I was too obsessed with my progress as an artist.

Eventually I took his advice and boy, I'm glad I did.

My pause gave me clarity on understanding of my abilities and limits, I decided on improving my skills that I have been much afraid to face till this very moment.

I decided to give myself the challenge of drawing anatomy , particularly the skull. What I admire about it is of its irregular lines and organic shapes. Starting out with a few references which  gave a slight demotivating outcome. But overall with good practice, I think it's not that bad for a start.

Now onto the sketches!
The pencil sketch is the first one. I wasn't confident with the shapes yet hence the guidelines.

A few references from pinterest and some drew in their own expression.

My personal fav would be the side view. It just looked so badass.

Putting bright colours in it and a funny caption.

Here's the sketch of me trying to combine two elements : floral + skull

When you're stuck in a rut, always believe it shall pass - even if it feels like there's no end. Try to sketch out the things you're not familiar with and who knows you might begin to like it.

Random fact : Grey brush pens are awesome to sketch with. This is the brush pen I used to sketch out the silhouettes. 

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