Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Raw Color

Theres something transcendental about creating something beautiful with little or no harm to the planet. Its hard to get by the creative (dare I say, art) world without looking like a hippie activist when striving for an eco-sustainable aesthetic. Nothing bad about being a hippie (as I can be) or an activist but I try to detach from these labels as it can be limiting. Though I have my beliefs I'm more of a do-what-you-love-what-you-do proactivist than an activist. Hence, check out the beauty of Raw Color.

Friday, February 24, 2012

I Misteri della Jungla Nera

The Mysteries of the Black Jungle. A book I found some time ago that propelled me back to the tropics as I leafed through its pages with vivid illustrations, colours so familiar I can feel my skin sweat, remembering the chorus of frogs, crickets, mantras.

Thursday, February 23, 2012


Don't have much to say other than I'm really bursting with ideas at the moment. Excited, giddy, high - yep.
Thank you Aya for sharing this excellent music video.

Also my good friend, talented photographer, stylist, fashionista to the Nth level - Plhong (same friend who requested my last/first PS tutorial) is now for hire. :)

Tuesday, February 21, 2012


For a long time I've been wanting to make my own clothes. Slowly in the last 2 years I've accumulated some vintage fabrics (some beautiful ones from an old woman in Mani, Greece and others given as presents). I don't shop very often. Most of my clothes are either thrifted or given or bought for a specific function and to last at least several lifetimes. like my trusty 4-year old Columbia water-heat-resistant (made from parachute material, as Nat puts it) folds-into-a-little-bag pants. I'm/we're also nomadic and "packing light" means less stuff to take around = peace of mind. Then again, I like dresses and I like dressing beautifully. I like a good story and clothing is a medium for telling. That said, and considering we've been land-locked for some time now, a wardrobe transformation is in the works. Starting with these patterns  that got me all the more excited - FOLKWEAR!!! The combined awesomeness of culture, history, art, and clothing. *smile*

hey Jill, I hope you enjoy these. Lets definitely make Folkabilly a possibility. :)

Muse: Smallest Forest

I met her only once, in Manila - call it a chance encounter through a friend of a dear friend who happened to be into art and all that good stuff. and she, Natalie or Smallest Forest, revealed herself and blew my mind with the wildest things I could dream of. But really, before I even saw her work, she made me laugh so hard I could've choked on my own spit. Sharp, witty, unpretentious, fierce, wild and natural. I immediately felt a deep respect and kinship.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Tutorial: Twilight and Sunset

Here it is! As requested by my good friend Plhong, a step by step tutorial on how I created the images from this blog entry. I managed to get to step 13 of the picture tutorial but was getting exhausted after that so *light-bulb moment* decided to do a screencast. ERRRR.. check it out here:

BYEE.. hahaha.. my little one was just sitting beside me while I was doing the whole thing - GURRGLING. :)
Anyway, you can view it fullscreen so you see all the itty-bitty details or pause between steps so you can follow at your own pace. I've also included the picture tutorial (up to step 13 only) that you can view if you read on down. Oh, this is also intended for intermediate Photoshop users. If your a beginner, there are hundreds of free tutorials online or you can check out some awesome tutorials specifically for bloggers here at Pugly Pixel (we share the same name too! shes awesome. that means I'm awesome. no, shes awesome.)

And sure I'd really LOVE to see what you come up with using this technique. The lighting and photos may vary so you can be flexible and play with all of the color-adjustments (precision is not important as long as you have the look you want in mind). For this project I was really just thinking about the contrast of red and blue hues and the whimsy of twilight.

Sunday, February 12, 2012


Welcome to Alphaville by Jean-Luc Godard (1965), dystopian science fiction and film noir (Fra suggests George Orwell's 1984. I say Sin City with a brooding Dick Tracy poet.). 

Friday, February 10, 2012

2nd day of Yoga. feeling rusty

Word of warning, personal bits coming in a few..
I suppose its the cold and being indoors for too long thats making me come face to face with myself and all of those things we'd rather brush off, hoping it'll take care of itself. After giving birth I've gone through a total life change (as do all new parents, mothers). I've never felt so much love for another human being and so much responsibility at the same time - its almost scary. No words can fully describe its beauty. Yes, many challenges yet many surprises and new discoveries too.

So, where were we? That thing I'd been brushing off? Its me. I feel like I've been neglecting myself.

To be honest, its actually been nice not having to put on makeup or care much about the way I look for the last couple of months. I'm less self-conscious and thats a load off my mind and allows me to perform other things like work and being a mom with ease. My baby guru teaches me to live in the moment all the time - every wail, every diaper change, every giggle, each of his wriggly toes mesmerizing me and putting my mind off silly things like getting a haircut. He helps me focus on what matters. That being said, I think I matter and lately I've been feeling a bit lost, a bit elsewhere, waiting to come back to earth and inhabit my body once again.

Alison, an expat like me, wonderful being living in Tuscany, had this 30 days 2 change 1 thing program and I've been wanting to participate but couldn't nail down that one thing (I had several things in mind). I finally decided that doing yoga everyday for 30 days would do me good. Why? Its me making time with my body, giving it back some love and respect, and just being quiet with myself without judgement - peace is the word, I think. :) Its my 2nd day today and boy do I feel rusty.
A very quick report here.

And if anyone shares this dream of living sustainably in an open-mind/heart community, you'll be pleased to find out that it exists in reality. My friends in the Philippines are making it happen. Take a look and share your thoughts/dreams if you like.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Recipe: Avocado-Kraut Salad with Greens

Snowstorm coming says the news and while today the snow went from fluffy to melty, its dreadfully only the beginning. Its not that bad, I think/hope. Just not much of a home-buddy and all this time cooped in makes me wish I was a yeti frolicking in winter wonderland.

Anyhoo, I felt like I needed a good dose of greens so we had some lightly steamed greens and a deliciously spicy Avocado-Kraut salad. Sounds like an episode of Bizzare Foods you say? Just think: pickled veggies/fruis. Its really good, no joke. *wink wink* Plus sauerkraut is packed full of good stuff and if you can get a hold of them in your local microbiotic shop/center or whole foods supermarket (or make your own) you can get creative and mix it in your salads or as a condiment, side-dish -- endless possibilities really.

Spicy Avocado-Kraut Salad 

1 Avocado. Carve a grid and scoop into a bowl.
4-5 Cherry Tomatoes chopped.
1/4 cup chopped spring onions or leeks (which I had)
3 tbsps or scoops of Sauerkraut (mine is a mix of cabbage and apple)
1 tsp of Tamari (or soysauce or salt to taste)
dash of paprika (a bit more for me coz I like the flavor) and chili/peperoncino
Juice of 1 lemon

Instructions: Mix all together. Let sit for a bit for flavors to mix well before serving.

Savory Greens 

4 big green Savoy Cabbagge leaves chopped into rectangle bits
1 bunch of Broccoli florets chopped roughly
1 red onion chopped
2 big garlic cloves chopped
2-3 tbsps extra virgin olive oil
salt to taste
squeeze of lemon juice and dash of chili/peperoncino (optional)

Instructions: Steam greens over boiling water for about 5-7mins or until it turns bright green and slightly wilted. In a hot pan fry chopped onions for a bit until it turns slightly brown on the sides, add salt (I dont use very much, maybe half a tsp) and chili (if you want. i do, i like it hot.) and then add chopped garlic and cook for a minute before turning off the fire, adding steamed greens and mix all together with a squeeze of lemon (if you want.). Serve.

Happy foodie.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012


My official introduction with arms, legs and head combined.

Hello, I’m Kat. Born and raised in the Philippines, multi-media creative*, mom to the beautifullest (superlative of superlatives) boy, making things happen in Italy and beyond.

Zero the One is for them and those that inspire me, a creative outlet, a way to stay curious and open, a habit I'd like to maintain like how people write on their journals/diaries or paint on canvas.

Why Zero the One?
I got into zen through a designer friend and the notion of zero, the nothingness so infinite that everything cannot escape it - embracing all, all of the whole which is one. It eluded me so, still does. Yet it keeps me awake, alert and present in the world whenever I'm feeling cloudy.

Multi-Media Creative* - the shortest set of words I can use to describe what it is that I do that includes: art/illustrationdesignanimationvideophotographymusicperformance, a mix of these and more. I like having the freedom to use different kinds of materials whether its outside of me or a part of me. I'm open to creative/design projects and collaborations. Feel free to contact me here.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

First Bread. Snowed In.

Eh. 4 days snowing, 4 meters of snow nearby Macerata, 4 reasons why its cool (and not just cold):
  1. Torta Salata con Cime di Rape e Cipolla (Brocolli Rabe and Onion Quick Bread adapted from this recipe I found through pinterest. substituted some ingredients and added cumin, tumeric, ajwain seeds, lets just say its more spicy indian style) my first bread attempt though its a cheat because its "quick" and not 4 hours plus kneading, the complete bread story is yet to come.
  2. Watching classic black and white films like Red Beard by Akira Kurosawa.
  3. Sharing the couch with the whole family (the three of us, that is). Keeping warm and close.
  4. Witnessing the strangeness of things like how snow accumulated on the laundry lines - and so thick too.

Also, happy happy HAPPY birthday to the awesomest embroider, artist, woman hero Smallest Forest. I have yet to write her an official fan-post. very soon though. :)

Friday, February 3, 2012

Recipe: Perssimon Banana Muffins

Visual learners unite! This here is an experiment in both design and baking. With all the Perssimons we 
brought home from Roberto's, I thought I'd bake some before they rot. My first experiment was a hit. I didn't write down anything so this next batch was an improvisation of the first. Still yummy good. Also, Jillian asked if I could share some Perssimon recipes so here it is.

Anyway, to close this:
- bake in muffin/cupcake pan on 180C or 356F for 15-20 mins 
- yields 6-12 depending on the size of your pans

Enjoy and share your experiment if you give this a try. :)

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Cold Frog

Its that time of the year. Play the song and sing la la la la

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Lunch in the Country

Last weekend our friends Roberto and Patricia invited us over for lunch at their country house. Despite the cold I was all YAY! I love Patricia's cooking!! hehehe.. Lets not even begin to discuss about food this cold wintery season (THAT and breast-feeding a growing 7monther - FAM..ISHED). The best part of lunch was, not only, the Risotto con Ortica e Peperoncino (warming and spicy, mmm) but the fact that most everything came fresh out of their vegetable garden.

How I'd love to have my own little Orto and grow our food, interesting varieties of veg and fruit such as those you'll see here. The house is truly carina, small yet bright and cozy. Roberto's handiwork.