Friday, November 27, 2009

Black Friday

This is my first attempt at Dynamic Typography, and I realize that some of the frames and perspective shifts are pretty wonky; I'm not that dope at motion design (yet), so what can I say?

The audio is part of Bambu's verse from the song, Slave Thinking, from the Native Guns album, Barrel Men. Dope album, yall should check it out. Baybayin font used was Nordenx's modern script.

Stay up,


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Translation Tuesday: Happy Thanksgiving!

In this week's exciting episode of Translation Tuesday, we find out how to write "Happy Thanksgiving" (Maligayang araw ng pasasalamat) as well as "Happy Turkey Day" (Maligayang araw ng mga pabo) into Baybayin! Also, the translation of the mysterious RA sound is finally discussed!

Lastly, to purchase the Baybayin Turkey-Day greeting card, just click here! (available only this week!)

Stay up,


Monday, November 23, 2009

Giving thanks, getting turkey

A week or so ago, I made this typography poster, experimenting with brush styles and trying to fake a 3d look:


So, using similar methods for the type, and with the American holiday of Thanksgiving day coming up, I wanted to make a Baybayin greeting card I could give out to friends. And here we have it:

Happy Turkey Day

It reads "Maligayang araw ng mga pabo!!!", or literally, "Happy day of turkeys!!!" I opted for "happy turkey day" rather than "Happy thanksgiving"... I'm not exactly sure why, but I guess it was just funny at the time. That, or I didn't want to let my hand-turkey drawing go to waste.

SO, I'll be special sending these out to family and loved ones, BUT, if YOU want one, just send me $5, which will cover the envelope, printing and shipping, to me and I'll be sure to send you one :-D

edit: SOLD OUT

Stay up,



Sunday, November 22, 2009

Spoken Word Sunday: They Say...

At the risk of losing fans of The Bathala Project, I'll opt for flexing some honest expression. Finally, after what seems like forever, an original spoken word piece of mine: They Say...

Like many Second-generation Filipino Americans, I was raised Catholic; and like many of my own generation, I would later become a skeptic...

Before you start debating and soap boxing your opinions, know this; I believe that there's no empirical proof that a god doesn't exist, however I also believe there's no empirical proof that a god does exist. This piece is about keeping an open mind, and to look past what you've been told to find what you find true to yourself. The word "Bathala" itself means the "supreme being", and was the name that the ancient Filipino people used for their god, before the Spanish came and replaced it with the word "Dios".

Stay up,


Thursday, November 19, 2009

The count is up...

Sometime last week I posted that if at least 50 people chimed in, regarding hosting a live video web-chat to have a free Baybayin consultation/translation/QA session, I'd do it. And how many people chimed in throughout my different avenues of communication??? The total number is... *drum roll*

8 replies.

Well, that's that...

Lately I've been trying to post more regularly, but I would rather concentrate on putting together a nice Baybayin piece for you all to see rather than just posting random schlop. So peace out for now, tune in Sunday for a new Spoken Word Sunday feature!

Stay up,



Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Flirts With Shirts

Humpday. Let's take a break from Baybayin bombin' for a second.

My path in art has been a rather erratic one; graffiti vandalism, stencil art, photo manipulation, vector art, graphic design, acrylic paintings, and every once in a while... t-shirts. I remember the very first time I ever saw a shirt being "custom designed" was when a 4-yr old version of myself gleefully brought home my cub-scout shirt-kit: an orange polo and an iron-on-patch of the cub scouts logo. My grandfather would happily iron on my cub-scout patch onto that husky pumpkin-orange polo shirt of mine... it was magical.

Later down the road in high school, one of my cousins would be the first on the block to bootleg Nike shirts and Reebok tees for himself by printing out their logos onto iron-on print-out sheets. Printable iron-on sheets was new at the time, so it was kind of a big deal. Forget that they were just logo-tees, they looked pretty legit! Around 2003, I very much wanted to buy an "I *heart* Hip Hop" shirt, but could never find one of the right font or heart shape to my liking. But what I did have was a grip of white tees, a printer, and some iron-on print sheets...

I <3 Hip hop shirt

No, I did not intend for it to look grunge-ish with the type, that's just how it looks like after 6 years of existence... and sadly, it's been lowered to undershirt status. But every now and then, it sees sunlight. The next year, when I joined the Purdue Filipino Association, I was of few members that had access to Photoshop at the time and thus became the designated graphics guy. The 2004-2005 PFA shirts would then come to fruition:

PFA shirt 04-05

Horrible... but it was cool at the time. The next year, I would redeem myself with the 2005-2006 PFA baseball shirt (aka 3/4 length sleeve shirt):

PFA shirt 05-06

I would later learn that a different opacity of the same color is still charged as 2-colors...

PFA shirt 05-06 detail

PFA shirt o5-06 (back)

Later on the same year, word through the bamboo would travel and I would later get picked up to do the Asian Student Union Board's first logo design and shirt design as well, to commemorate ASUB's "spring olympics"... which I never attended. Also, this shirt is the cleanest one too, as it's always been too small and thus never worn.

ASUB shirt 2006

ASUB shirt 2006 detail

ASUB shirt 2006 (back)

I graduated from Purdue in 2006, so that was the end of the student organization shirt designs... or so I thought. Earlier this year, as my work with Baybayin education throughout the Fil-Am collegiate community would build, I'd try my crack at it once again with Indiana University's FSA shirts:

And lastly, my most previous efforts came to realization earlier this week for The Boxing Club at UCLA:

UCLA boxing club shirt 2009

Boxing club at UCLA's team shirts


People always ask if I'm ever going to put my Baybayin work on clothes, and I always tell them that the market isn't there... but it is. Baybayin can be stylized into abstract beautiful goodness, or it can be turned into the next trendy-eye sore. My main issue is this: I have ideas, but I feel like I'm not quite as articulate with design as I'd like to be to fully express and present something I'd be proud to show. I'm not going to sell any piece that I'm not proud of, regardless how many people claim to love it... My latest shirts, the UCLA boxing tee and the I.U. FSA shirts show me that I'm making good progress, and I'm almost there... almost... f*cking almost. But oddly enough, I'm satisfied that I'm unsatisfied; it shows that my taste is still clear enough to tell when my own work isn't where I'd like to be. And thus... I fear the day when I'm in love with my own shit.

Stay up,



Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Translation Tuesday: Filipino Pride

A very common request I get is how to translate "Filipino Pride" (or some iteration of it) into Baybayin (Alibata). In today's exciting episode of Translation Tuesday, we'll learn how to write out "pride"...

You might notice I kinda had the sniffles in this video... I got a fun little project soon to be posted up, hopefully finished by this week. It'll be something to ring in the holiday cheer!

Stay up,


Monday, November 16, 2009

Man of my word...

Give these 2-3 days to ship...


Translation Tuesday tomorrow!

Stay up,


Sunday, November 15, 2009

We win, I lose...

Betting on Cotto sounded reasonable at the time...

Spoken word sunday returns next week with a piece of my own (finally). Reply to me by Friday to get this live video chat Baybayin/Alibata consultation session crackin!

Stay up,


Friday, November 13, 2009


An older piece from the vault, the "Yakap" card:


Yakap means "Hug" in Tagalog. When I was a toddler, I recall my mother telling me that 5 hugs a day keeps a heart healthy. So before I'd fall asleep, I'd try to make sure I'd get my 5 hugs in... somewhere along the line, I guess I forgot about that.

The characters "Ya-Ka-P" were used, however back then, the way I stylized my P's were pretty funky; kinda looks like a Ta character... ah well, "It was cool at the time." This piece was done on card stock, painted with spray paint and acrylic brush. I made it as either a birthday or a happy-graduation card for someone dear. I bring this all up because for this Thanksgiving, I'm trying to clutch together a special design to be given (and if you ask nicely, maybe for you to purchase!).

Stay up,


Thursday, November 12, 2009


Good lookin out to the homie Roderick for putting me on to this!

Hahahahaha... my friends and family know which one I fall under, but do you?

Stay up,


btw, it IS Free Swag Thursday, so stay up on both Twitter and Facebook for your chance to win! Previous winners need not apply...

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Death March

In honor of Veterans Day and those that served; specifically for those in WW2 and had either experienced or had comrades fall to the Bataan death march.


Stay up,



Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Translation Tuesday: Aimee

I forgot to go over a major point in the video, the lack of disambiguation between an "E" or "I" sound, and between an "O" or "U" sound. Traditional Baybayin is a very bare-bones writing system, which when taken to its most literal sounds in context to modern pronunciation, can not fully express all the sounds found in a spoken language. Ancient Tagalog was pronounced slightly differently than what we hear today, such that the differences between the "O" and "U" sound (and "E" to "I" sound) weren't as separated as they are today. Thus, the same diacritic indicators (kudlits) are used to express E-and-I and O-and-U...

In the video, I mentioned "E-Mi" would make a good phonetic estimation for "Aimee" (Amy), though I was pronouncing it as "Eh-Meh". Really, I was pronouncing the "Mi/Me" character strictly as "Me" (Meh), forgetting to mention that this can also be pronounced as "Mi" (Mee). It's also a very close translation to the sound of "-Mee" in the name "Aimee". Vice versa, the same characters used to express "E-Mi" (Eh-Mee) also also be read as "I-Me" (Ee-Meh).

With this in mind, I really do think that "E-Y-Mi" (Ey-Mee) is the closest phonetic estimation to Aimee; however, this is of the few times I'd actually rather opt for a traditional, cross-kudlit-less translation, simply because nothing much is really lost or gained by including the "Y" sound. There are times when a cross kudlit could completely change the meaning of a word, as is the case with "Pata" (tired) and "Patay" (to kill). This isn't one of them.

Stay up,



Sunday, November 8, 2009

Spoken Word Sunday: Abet Speaks

So... I know this isn't a "real" Spoken Word Sunday post, as it isn't an original piece of my own or even captured by my own camera. But, for my lack of activity, I pull other talent to the spot light. Abet isn't new to the Spoken Word Sunday series, so you know she's quality! Check out her latest piece, Superwoman & Vulnerabilities

Aside from the goodness above, she recently dropped a fresh original melody that's been stuck in my head for a minute... sorry if it gets stuck in your head too!

Stay up!



Saturday, November 7, 2009

I see I.D.

New video ID using the updated logo:

Pretty simple, and yes, I know the soundless space in the beginning is wierd, but keep in mind I always have some kinda instrumental music playing in the back at the end of my videos anyways. The font is Helvetica NT medium and Bold, made in Adobe After Effects cs4. 10 secs in length.

Stay up,


edit: Now in Vimeo glory!


Thursday, November 5, 2009

That New New'

The "logo" that I've been using to represent The Bathala Project was never intended to be a logo at all. It was actually a tattoo design for a lovely young Filipina out in the U.K. who wished to have "Bahala Na" tattooed. A couple of days later, I sent her this:

Bahala Samples copy

Which later got refined to this:

Bahala Na sample

And, out of laziness to script something of my own, made it into this:

Samples Banner

It might be pretty and all, but as a logo, it fails at several things:
  1. It's too detailed, such that at very small scale, the detail is lost.
  2. For an artist that openly uses the cross-kudlit, writing "Bahala" instead of "Bathala" is rather inconsistent of myself.
  3. Because Baybayin is generally not a recognizable shape, if presented on a piece of paper, the viewer may not know which way is right side up
So, after a couple of failed ideas, I finally present to you all the new logo for The Bathala Project:

New Bathala Project Logo

Mono-weight line to match the accompanying monoweight text (Helvetica and Gotham), simple "two color" contrast, recognizable circle geometry, and an overall modern aesthetic to communicate what it is I do with Baybayin; ancient script with modern styling.




Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Cheat Sheet

Finally uploaded a Baybayin character reference sheet for all to download. Click here to download!

Sample of what it looks like...

A link will, from now on, always be available on the right side of the page. Hopefully this can get you guys started off right!

Stay up,



Monday, November 2, 2009

Translation Tuesday: Mabuhay

I hope I can keep up with making this a weekly web video series...

I've been meaning to start this a long time ago, but it's only till recently that more and more people are emailing me with Baybayin translation requests, slowly making the production of tutorial videos a necessity. I'm always willing to go to conferences, festivals and other forums to present and educate about Baybayin history and methods. That's actually what the Bathala Project is mostly about; education through proliferation. However, lately I've been getting e-mails/messages asking me to translate-this or translate-that with neither a formal introduction or a "please & thank you".

Give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach a man to fish, he'll eat for a lifetime.

Usually with these e-mails, I'll first inquire if they're requesting me to do a commissioned piece for them (ala custom name cards, digital prints, canvas pieces, etc). But I'll always include telling them which characters for their translations to use, hoping that by showing them the break-down process, they could figure out for themselves how to translate their desired word into Baybayin. I know it can seem daunting if nobody has explained it to you before, and failure is always an option, as evidenced in my short story in the video. Still, some persist and reply back to me along the lines of "I DON'T WANT TO BUY ANYTHING JUST TRANSLATE IT FOR ME." Yeesh...

So, I hope doing these tutorial videos can weed out translation fiends and help build an online, interactive community to educate and interact with each other. I'm not sure how I'm going to make these videos interactive yet. Maybe I'll ask people to post up videos of their own translations and we'll have a translation critique session? Who knows...

Stay up,