Mia S-N is creating
illustration, calligraphy, beautiful words
Joy shall be our defiance, our beauty, our song.
The illustrations and their accompanying stories will be archived on my site, as a visual and verbal gallery of delights free for browsing whenever you may please.
My portfolio: Paraluman.
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I'm a queer Filipina artist who recently immigrated to Australia for True Love. My heart lives halfway between the Philippines -- the land of my birth and the beat of my blood, pugad ng luha ko't dalita -- and Australia, a place whose song I am only just learning, where I am just beginning to put down roots.
My work is informed by what I know and love and have experienced: the struggle to reclaim a heritage and history from the ashes of a colonial past, the perpetual battle for an identity that hatred would mark for annihilation. I believe art in all its forms is a form of defiance against oppression -- as is joy, as is survival. I do art in the spirit of this defiant joy; I do art as a song sung in anger and hope and solidarity with the constant strivings of the underrepresented, the marginalized, the disenfranchised. I believe as we reclaim our art and our culture we will have more capacity to move forward. That looking back into the past helps us to look to the future with more freedom, so that we may learn, ever more, where we came from and who we are-- and choose who we want to be.
My favorite themes: fairy tales, monsters, and fantastic excesses; revolution and decolonization; reclamation of heritage and history and present; identity and the various retellings thereof; the fantastical as everyday and vice versa; and immigration, economics, and language.
I am currently working on a series of illustrations and stories that seek to re-examine, re-invent, and reclaim Philippine mythology and folklore, for instance: the manananggal as a symbol of justice and recompense, the story of the Adarna as a tale of two women struggling to resolve the dichotomy between monster and human while striving towards their own kind of freedom. I also have a project to develop baybayin, an indigenous writing system, in several calligraphic scripts and styles.
Your support will enable me to do art and still support my family. As a new immigrant and the sole income-earner of my family it's not easy to find space and time for stories and illustrations when one is worrying about making the rent. With your support I'll be able to make rent, buy much-needed art supplies, and devote enough energy and time to continue writing, continue drawing, continue scribing. Continue singing.
Note on "finished work" frequency: Right now I'm looking at around two to five finished pieces of art a month: a complete illustration, a finished short story, etc. The average will probably be three if I'm able. If I somehow manage to do more than five complete pieces in a month, I will not post the ones over five as "finished work" so that you will not get charged for them.