I’m Elise Olarte, a freelance artist based in the Philippines.
I design. I paint. I draw. I illustrate.
As an artist, I am still growing, learning, and exploring different methods and styles.
I like art, music, movies, fashion, books, cats, and challenges.
(scroll down to know more about me and why I blog ——it’s a long read)
Honestly I am not sure if I am writing my “About” page correctly. I am just being myself.
I think I should start at the beginning. Here it goes:
My mother taught me to hold a pencil at age two. From there I learned how to draw.
Unfortunately, growing up, I began to have a lot more interests. . . so I didn’t just draw and paint all my life.
It would have been good, though, I would have become a greater artist by now.
As soon as I learned how to read, I began reading books (starting with books full of pictures, children’s encyclopedias, and gradually, novels).
I had a lot of Barbie dolls when I was a young girl (they’re still with me til now, because I didn’t throw them away). I didn’t play with them the way most kids did: making believe they were real and making scenarios. . . not really. Instead, I would take anything that can be folded and tied up and use it to make makeshift dresses. I would take a pair of scissors and occasionally give the dolls a new hideous haircut. And then pose them somewhere. (I wish I had a camera back then, I would have taken photos of those moments. It’d be good to show it here, below this sentence.)
But check this out, just to show an example.
Yeah I know, it’s a bit crappy. =)) Hey, it’s supposed to be summery. I felt the heat on my open window that day. Anyway, I was busy.
Some of my make shift draped dresses from various materials looked better than in the photo above, if my memory serves me right – and most of the time, it doesn’t, but it feels like the things I made back then were all so amazing, only I didn’t capture them through photos.
Up until I read Harry Potter, I can always be seen drawing things. Most of the time, I would make drawings and doodles based on my favorite cartoons (I wanted to show some examples but I’ll just add those photos on a later date.).
While I was addicted to Harry Potter, I thought I wanted to be a writer, too.
I like imagining things, above everything. While reading all those books, I drew and painted less. . . everything probably got reduced to quick doodles.
Before college, I didn’t know what I wanted.
My parents suggested the Advertising course at the University of Santo Tomas, but I guess I was so absent-minded back then that I didn’t realize it was under the Bachelor of Fine Arts. Hah, I was so silly.
While I was in college, I was beginning to learn more about myself.
Advertising really is a very interesting subject. I really enjoyed thinking of concepts and teaming up with my classmates, but I realized that I liked fashion design, illustration, and painting even more.
Whenever I look back at myself as a kid, I feel like I was a better artist then, in a way.
I was less skilled, but I was more artistic because I didn’t restrict myself as much as I do now. I drew and painted without thinking what others might think of it, far from my overthinking current self. I’m trying to practice it now, whenever I make something. It feels a lot better when I just let my creativity flow. I finish quicker and most of the time get better results.
The only thing that didn’t change is my love for cartoons. I am in my twenties but I still watch them. My personal favorites (that are still on TV) are: Regular Show, Adventure Time, and Spongebob Squarepants.
I guess that this blog is about my journey back to that old self that I miss so much.
Not that I suck as an artist now, I just think I must get better. I want to be one of the best.
As an artist, I think I am still in the early levels. I still haven’t really established an artistic/illustrative style (although my friends say that I already have a distinct style, I still think I should work on it.) so I am allowing myself to experiment. I may post some work that may look like crap to me or to other people, but I’m doing it for the sake of documenting my progress and maybe interact with people who can relate.
This blog can also be my way of promoting or selling my work, incidentally.
It is not in my character to really mingle with people just for the sake of “networking” (what most artists need to do, although it feels embarrassing to admit). I’m not saying that “networking” is a terrible practice, I just think that there is another way to get yourself into the world, and that is by simply showing your work (I learned that from Austin Kleon‘s “Show Your Work“), among things. It is a way for artists like me who, naturally communicate better visually.
I’m not good at convincing people “Hey, I’m an artist and I can do this and that!” without showing anything visual. I am not a salesperson. I’ll just go “Hey, here’s what I can do, check out my work or my blog.” If people appreciate it, “Thanks.” If people don’t,”Okay.”
To whoever is reading this: Thank you. You took time to read my “About Me” page. 🙂
I genuinely hope that whoever reads and subscribes to my blog will like what they find and, if possible get inspired.
I always appreciate it. 🙂