The past is a parade of countless days.

Sigh, vacation’s over. Arn and I are back from Japan but it hasn’t quite sunk in yet1. Our legs and backs still ache2 from all the walking, hiking, and running after trains we did, but so what? At least we were able to bring home a lot of happy memories, pictures, and Crunky3 to last us til… well, the next chance for another holiday4. I’ll write a decent travelogue soon — there’s way too much I want to share about the trip but I have to finish unpacking first. Seeya later. ๐Ÿ™‚

Japan vacation 2006

1. Wall of lanterns, 2. Astroboy, 3. Tendon setto at Minggei, 4. Wishing blocks, 5. Meiji Jingu Shrine, 6. Tokyo National Gymnasium, 7. Tokyo National Gymnasium, 8. Yoyogi Park, 9. Takoyaki, 10. NHK Studio Park, 11. NHK Studio Park, 12. Shibuya crossing, 13. JR train map at Tokyo Station, 14. Self-portrait at the Shibuya crossing, 15. Shibuya Station Mural, 16. Laputa Robot Soldier at the Studio Ghibli Museum rooftop garden, 17. Welcome to the Straw Hat Cafe!, 18. A side street in Shibuya, 19. Halloween masks at Tokyu Hands, 20. Manhole cover at the Ghibli Museum courtyard, 21. The “Nekobasu” (Cat Bus) shuttle service to the Ghibli Museum, 22. “Maid in Japan” girls in Akihabara, 23. Akihabara TX station, 24. Capsule toy vendos, 25. Entrance to the Ghibli Museum, 26. Postcard-pretty view of the lake at Mt. Bandai, 27. Hello, fishies, 28. Koi fish, 29. Autumn leaves in Fukushima, 30. Sticky rice balls, 31. View from the Tsurugajo Castle, 32. Tsurugajo Castle, 33. Aizu Samurai Residence, 34. By the lake at Mt. Bandai, 35. I’ve got Tokyu Hands, 36. Arn at the Design Festa Gallery
More photos in my Multiply galleries:
* Harajuku, Shibuya, Omotesando
* Nippori, NHK Museum, Tokyo Olympic Gymnasium
* Studio Ghibli Museum
* Shibuya and Akihabara
* Fukushima Prefecture

… and in Arnold’s Flickr set.

  1. I bowed and almost uttered “arigato” to the customs officer at NAIA. This is what happens when you spend two weeks in Japan. (You just gotta love the Japanese, they’re such a polite society.)[ back]
  2. Ahh the signs of aging…[ back]
  3. I love Crunky chocolate but only second to Melty Kiss, particularly the Matcha (green tea) flavor. Unfortunately Melty Kiss was late coming out this year so I didn’t get to hoard boxes of them like I normally do, hehe. (It only appears on the shelves during late fall and winter.)[ back]
  4. Whenever that may be, sigh. Bitin![ back]
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Everyone around me is a total stranger.


Non-trad ad for The Yoga Center.


In Non-traditional Advertising, ads are strategically positioned in the most unexpected places e.g. the sidewalk, a manhole cover, and as in the brilliant1 example above, a straw. The trick is in fusing your big idea with the 3D properties of the medium without making the proposition seem contrived2. On that note, I stumbled upon this really cool collection of Creative Ads Around The World I thought you might enjoy!


UPDATE: Mr. Katana of is the real creator of the Creative Ads list, and not the webmaster of Eglobe1 like I originally linked to. Apparently Onion82 of Eglobe stole Mr. Katana’s entry and is passing it off as his3. Read more about it here.

Heyheyhey, why don’t you deck out your windows with these dooper-cute Halloweenie windsocks our good friends Nina and Carlo designed4 :


They’re available in Maxitoylab Alabang Town Center and Maxiworks Powerplant Mall in Rockwell. Theyรขโ‚ฌโ„ขre made of nylon, are 2.5 feet in length and 18 inches in diameter, and cost P150 each. Grab one now, yes?
It’s been said time and again that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Last July, our 2-year old magazine Wedding Essentials came out with a Special Issue called WE Beautiful Weddings featuring 25 real wedding stories and photos submitted and written by actual brides. We even included a “supplier box” listing down all the vendors each couple worked with.


Fast forward to this month: look what our more-than-5-year-old rival mag did. For their, um, version, they also asked brides to write the stories themselves — something WE has been doing since the very first issue. At least the art direction is different but the overall concept and format was copied right down to the supplier box.5) Well, well, well, how utterly flattering! ๐Ÿ˜‰
So if you love WE, pretty please wait for our next issue and do feel free to take a peek at the behind-the-scenes action via my phlog.


Arn and I will be away from home6 for a couple of weeks but I’ll see if I can post from where we’ll be. Seeya. ๐Ÿ™‚

  1. It’s so simple, it makes you go “why didn’t I think of that?”[ back]
  2. I’ve actually seen it employed locally, some better executed than others though, but it’s good to know that the brand people are becoming more open to the non-conventional approach.[ back]
  3. Sigh, aren’t we all victims of intellectual property thievery lately.[ back]
  4. They’re sooo cute! I’m guessing that sock #s 1, 3, 4, and 5 are by Nina and #s 2 and 6 are by Carlo, correct?[ back]
  5. The only difference is that ours was a true labor of love and not something borne out of marketing warfare. ;[ back]
  6. …and our dear little Abbas ๐Ÿ™[ back]
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Check it up, I funk it up. Minna damatte ore ni tsuite koi, yeah.

As promised, here’s part two of my Design Heroes entry.


Stefan Sagmeister. He’s worked on album packaging and posters for music industry giants The Rolling Stones, Lou Reed, Talking Heads, Pink Floyd, etc. and is best known for his trademark hand-made typography. With an emphasis on concept over style, everything he churns out has an exciting, “made you look, huh?” quality. His mantra? Work slower, do less work, do it better.1



Paula Scher. I love designers who play with type and Ms. Scher is certainly one of them. She designed the uber-cool “Bring in Da Noise, Bring in Da Funk” posters2 as well as the simply clever “Citi” logo of Citibank and the globally-recognized elegant branding for Tiffany&Co. How’s that for style diversity? Incidentally, she’s one of the partners at legendary design studio Pentagram.

Next time, I’ll tell you all about my web design heroes.
By the way, Graphika Manila — the first ever design conference in Manila — is happening on December 2 at the Mall of Asia. It’s gonna be a huge event guys, design biggies of the new skool, Joshua Davis and MK12, are flying over to speak alongside local talents Team Manila, Blackflood and our good pals Rex + Jois of Inksurge (yay!). Count on us to be there for support ๐Ÿ˜€
We have back-to-back shoots this week so do check out the phlog from time to time for updates.

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  1. I’d love to apply this work ethic but sadly, in the third world we’re often driven by extremely tight deadlines, not to mention the need to make ends meet as soon as we can. ๐Ÿ™ [ back]
  2. I actually watched the show on Broadway (’98) just because the posters grabbed my attention. [ back]
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I'm Cynthia Bauzon-Arre, a Filipino watercolor artist & graphic designer. I live in QC with my talented graphic novelist husband Arnold and our friendly marmalade tabby Abbas. This blog has been chronicling my life, likes, and loves since 2001. [ more ]

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