Tuesday, July 30, 2019
Monday, July 29, 2019
L-R: PBBY President Tarie Sabido, Araceli Limaco Dans, Gabriela Lee and Cris Millado, Vice Chairman of CCP
Friday, July 26, 2019
Here is part 2 of my interview on building a database of Philippine Children’s Literature.
7.. What do you think can be improved about children’s picture books in the country?
To answer this question, one has to look at the book industry as an ecosystem and as an enterprise of knowledge creation and management. There are role players and communities that contribute to its growth and development. These are the content creators, the readers, distributors, researchers and educators, stakeholders and policy makers. Each has to play an active role in the improvement of children’s books. There are different agencies and institutions in government and the private sector that are assigned or do specific roles like the PBBY, the NBDB, the Book Development Association of the PH, the DepEd, the National Library of the Philippines, the CCP, NCCA and a host of NGOs.
If you ask each role player, each agency and institution you will get a different answer. But their answers need to be connected and woven together. Or else, who will read the books? How can content creators continue creating if not for the readers and the system that support their art? For example, if I say that books in the mother tongue as developed in the regions is a potential area of growth, who do you think would be involved in its development and improvements?
To quote Ramon Sunico, poet and teacher, a book is a dream dreamed by a team.
How strong is the book development team and the ecosystem to which this team operates in so that it can continuously create?
8. Do you think it’s necessary to create an online database for children’s picture books in the Philippines? Who would it benefit, what are its values? Would it elevate the status of children’s illustration as an art form/create more visibility for it?
Librarians and libraries create databases for a number of reasons namely, for organization of knowledge, for access to information, for memory and remembering, for posterity, to sustain culture and art, to curate what is valuable to specific groups of thinkers and learners, to strengthen the knowledge infrastructure of specific disciplines.
A database is not the only factor that can elevate the art of a book maker, a writer, an artist and a reader. Also, there are many ways to make art and book making more visible. There is no one solution, really, because art, in general does not grow and develop ina straight line.
9. Should the database actually store .pdf files of the children’s picture books, or should it simply just contain the picture book titles, authors, illustrators, summaries and the places where people can purchase or view the books?
Who are the end users of the database? Consider first the learning community or the group of artists who will benefit from the database. How do they create art? How can their art be preserved, restored and archived? What about copyright and intellectual property? How can he database be sustained?
For all you know, there is already an existing database of children’s books in the country in the
big universities, museums and the National Library. Maybe what we need is a “union” catalog or a centralized database where in, libraries and institutions with databases of children’s books and literature can pool all of these resources in a unified database.
10. Would orgs like CANVAS/PBBY/INK find this database helpful? 11. How can CANVAS/PBBY/INK contribute in the creation of this database?
They can be a part of the development, but a committee or a commission must be the lead agency to do this. Right now, I don’t who can.
12. Do you have any recommendation/suggestions related to creating a database like this? Is it better to create a directory or database, etc.
I think I have some suggestions already in previous questions.
13. Do you know any other related source material I can look into?
Visit schools, colleges and universities offering Children’s Literature courses. They may have a wealth of research and resources already. All we need is to find and mine it!
Thursday, July 25, 2019
Teachers and librarians in Baguio Central School read and talked about books.
Librarians making their mood boards, an exercise on creativity and spontaneity.
Wednesday, July 24, 2019
1. How did you approach illustrating A Delicate Strength?
This is interesting because when I was illustrating A Delicate Strength, there was a question that loomed at the back of my head. Should I stay true to Mrs. Dans’ realist style or should I make it more fantastical or whimsical? In the end, I brought my approach back to the story’s title. I wanted my illustrations to have a very graceful, delicate, and whimsical quality, yet still look grounded in realism. It’s a big theme throughout the story - finding beauty and strength in delicate, sometimes mundane objects - so I really wanted it to show in the illustrations.
Also, I was a fan of Mrs. Dans’ work. Many people say that my illustrations can be very mabusisi or detailed. That’s also something that I wanted to show, so I added the callados Mrs. Dans is famous for. Actually, a part of why I chose to enter this year was that I just really wanted to illustrate callados. Hehe.
2. What is your advice to kids who are thinking of pursuing a career in the arts?
I’d like to tell them to not be afraid of making mistakes and letting their minds and hands wander. Nobody starts out perfect. Don’t be discouraged when you end up making something you’re not proud of. Be excited about it! Because that’s when self-improvement and discovery comes. I feel like with social media, it’s very easy to compare your work with others. However, you’re the only one who can do you, so focus on your craft and enjoy creating.
Panadero at the National Children’s Book Day awarding ceremonies in CCP last July 16, 2019.
3. What are your top 5 children’s books and why?
- Alamat ng Ampalaya - This was my first vivid memory of a Filipino children’s book, so this book occupies a special place in my heart. To be honest, I didn’t have a lot of Filipino children’s books growing up - many of the books on my list, I discovered while lingering in bookstores. However, for this book, I remember being so fascinated with the Ampalaya wearing the colourful costume it made by stealing from the other vegetables.
- Isang Harding Papel - I love how this book tells the story of Martial Law in a very personal, intimate, and even heart-wrenching way. The storytelling device of the paper flowers was so beautiful.
- And Ambisyosong Istetoskop - I love how the story of Jose Rizal is told endearingly through this book. I also love how the book ends, with the stethoscope being proud that it’s displayed in a museum honouring its owner.
- What Kids Should Know About Filipino Food - As a kid, I was into encyclopedic books which would share facts on different topics accompanied with varied illustrations. This book reminds me of an encyclopedia, only that it focuses on food, is more engaging, and with adorable and vivid illustrations.
- Alice in Wonderland - Pop-up Book by Robert Sabuda - I am into paper engineering, so I just have to mention this book. It’s a retelling of the fairy tale brought to life by amazing pop-ups by master paper engineer Robert Sabuda. I find myself being speechless whenever I get to open this book.
4. Apart from finishing the illustrations for A Delicate Strength, what other art projects are you busy with and would need support and promotion?
I have 1 book out entitled Intramuros: The Walled City, a cut and build book which readers can take apart to build a paper model of Intramuros. I’m currently working on the follow-up to this book, so hopefully we get to release it next year.
Other than that, I am a graphic designer by profession. I work at a branding studio called And A Half. We work on different brands ranging from restaurants to real estate, skin clinics to schools. We’re looking into working on higher impact projects for audiences that need it most, so if anyone knows of a cause which thinks would need help design wise, they can send us a message at email@example.com :)
Monday, July 22, 2019
Saturday, July 20, 2019
I received a request from a student for an interview on children’s literature in the country and the need for a database that content creators, teachers, librarians and parents can use. Ms. Bella Abuel is an AB Arts Management student at the De La Salle College of St. Benilde. Here is part one.
- Why are you in this field? What led you to work with children’s picture books/children’s illustration?
As a school librarian, it is part of my job to know the history, trends and developments in children’s literature.
2. What is your experience working in this field?
As a school librarian, I am at the distribution, promotion, documentation and communication of children’s books and literature for children. I work with kids and teens, helping them in research, delivering readers advisory and reading guidance, assisting teachers in their use of varied learning materials for learners.
I was once president of a writing group for kids. I am a published children’s book author so I have worked with various illustrators and publishers. As past PBBY president and now, board member, I have been involved in projects that fill gaps in children’s literature in the country. These roles enable me to work with key people and groups of professionals in the children’s book industry in the country.
As an academic researcher, I have written articles, papers and research on children’s literature, its distribution, study, critique and teaching.
3. Why do you think children’s picture books are important? (or developments for children’s literature?) Do you think children’s picture books can help with children’s cognitive skills, emotional literacy, etc.?
Please visit this link to read essays of writers, illustrators, teachers and librarians, literacy advocates of picture books: https://picturebookmonth.com/
4. Do you know anything about the history of children’s picture books in the Philippines?
Good references on the history of PH Kids Lit are, Bumasa at Lumaya: A Spurce Book of PH Kids Lit Vols. 1 and 2, published by Anvil Publishing. And, the new CCP Encyclopedia has a good chapter on PH Kids Lit written by Mailin Paterno and Neni Sta. Romana Cruz. Virgilio Almario also written a critique of PH Kids Lit trends and production in 2009, published by Anvil.
Go find these books as the history and documentation of PH Kids Lit have been written already and continuously being updated.
5. Are you aware of any physical or online database related to children’s picture books/children literature?
There used to be the International Children’s Literature Database, but it has ceased.
The Philippines needs a database on Children’s Literature and the reasons for it are plenty. Many will benefit from it, not just the content creators.
Wednesday, July 17, 2019
Tuesday, July 16, 2019
Monday, July 15, 2019
Friday, July 12, 2019
PASLI Represents school librarians in the FOI Workshop for Librarians
Tuesday, July 9, 2019
Monday, July 8, 2019
Friday, July 5, 2019
Thursday, July 4, 2019
Wednesday, July 3, 2019
This is my favorite nook in Nook. If you know me well, you know why. 😉
Tuesday, July 2, 2019
One, technology unceasingly advances in an unbridled manner. Information is continuously exploding. Flooding us in and out of our thinking process. We find ourselves swimming against the current. Well, except for the generation Z, who seem to adapt perfectly well in the ebb and flow of the tides of information. Then again, it seems that they could not go deeper into the heart of the ocean, where more nutritious information and amazing knowledge rest. The digital divide widens between generations, as well as the tech haves and have nots. You have the technology to fish, then you get them. Hook, line and sinker.
Already, there are talks of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. But, there I was talking to publisher friends at how diverse today's readers and users are and this diversity affect the choices of reading materials created and produced. Long ago, their model for book and knowledge distribution follows a linear path. Books go to bookstores, schools and libraries. With the web, wifi and the cloud, everything is out there like an eat-all-you can buffet.
That's number two. Librarians and publishers need to work together to offer reading materials that are programmed to help, assist, aid and inspire readers make informed choices. We also share the same sentiments in the creation and provision of access of books to our readers. A publisher friend is looking at strengthening their research and development unit to channel production and marketing to realistic gains. I am considering demand driven acquisition and one of the concerns I have is whether to subscribe to an ebook lending system. Like my publisher friend, I will turn to research to find answers.
So it never ends - thinking, and finding out solutions to problems. I need to go back and review the Design Thinking principles I learned from my Head of School back in 2014. Because, in Design Thinking, compassion, creativity and critical thinking all come into play when finding out solutions to problems.