With a population close to 100 million, the Philippines has surprisingly been a quiet presence in the world of art and design – up until now.
With a new generation of talented digital artists arriving on the scene, the Philippines looks set to stake its claim as one of the world’s hotspots for great graphic design and illustration.
We spoke to a few of the Philippines’ best graphic designers to discover what they think about their profession.
1. Abbey Sy
“The graphic design scene, or art scene in general, in the Philippines is pretty diverse. Lately it’s been leaning towards typography, calligraphy and lettering – and it’s pretty interesting how artists adapt these fields to their own preferred styles and medium.”
“I think of the popularity of graphic design in the Philippines as more of a cultural phenomenon.
When it comes to Filipino graphic design, it’s all about the maximal and visual aspect. The Filipino audience love aesthetically pleasing, free designs with no rules, as these designs easily catch their attention.”
“In the recent past, the graphic design scene in the Philippines had been a little bit left behind by other countries. But in the past few years I think it’s been really catching up fast. A lot of Filipino designers and illustrators are now getting recognised internationally.”
4. Risa Rodil
“I think I can say that the design scene here in the Philippines is starting to push its way forward. It’s exciting to see a lot of emerging artists and designers working together to keep the community running. With our current design scene being fairly enthusiastic, I’m pretty positive that it will continue to boost over the coming years.”
“The design scene in the Philippines is very competitive and diverse, with different influences from different cultures, creating huge impact on how designers think and design, as well as the experience, discipline, environment, attitude, emotions and the way they look at the world; it all adds up to the output of their creation.
Today, more and more people are aware of the difference between good and bad designs, and in effect, this builds a strong demand for a smart, well thought-out holistic design approach.
For today’s graphic designers and artists, such as myself, it’s not enough that we have the knowledge and skills, or are using the latest technology.
The challenge is to create responsible, functional designs; simple enough for everyone to understand its true meaning, focusing not only on the message that needs to be conveyed, but also taking into account the materials and process that’s going to be used as the medium for the designs, without contributing to the problems our environment is facing today.”
6. Hinchel Or
‘“I started illustrating professionally about two years ago and, after seeing the industry from an insider’s perspective, I can easily say that there is a lot of incredible talent in the Philippines.
A lot of styles from different backgrounds, influences and upbringings help flesh out art that’s both unique and innovative in its own ways.
Some of the things I tell myself in this line of work are to always allow for your art to grow, to draw inspiration from what you love… and to enjoy yourself, of course, that’s the most important thing.”
“We’ve got a fast-growing creative community here in the Philippines, giving a distinct, multicultural and innovative artistry.
Filipino creatives love to connect with each other; doing collaborations and exchanging ideas. We’ve got a fun and exciting creative scene.
Our country is rich with different artists that make waves in the international scene; particularly in the entertainment, creative, and design industries.”
“The graphic design scene in the Philippines is like a sprout that has emerged from the soil; it’s an ever-growing art form. Time will show everyone how vivid it will be.
There aren’t that many design studios here; most designers/artists do freelance work, like I do. Artists could be given more chances if there were more people recognising our work.
As I mentioned, it is still growing. There are a few who are standing out because of their work, and those artists will be the ones setting the standards.
Art is a way for people to express themselves on a deeper level, and with the help of technology we can get our artwork out there for everyone to appreciate.
I hope the graphic design industry in the Philippines will bloom – who knows what masterpieces we will see soon.”
“The Philippines’ design scene is very diverse and expansive. It’s maybe because of our country’s multicultural nature.
There’s a wide variety of inspiration to look into, down from the intricate details of Spanish Era structures, that are present in old towns and cities, to the colourful festivities we enjoy every year.”
Most of the designers here that I know and admire are young and they have changed the graphic design scene here for the better.
It just shows that the Philippines is rich in potential and a great and promising future is ahead of us.”
10. Jaycee Mariano
“The Philippines is a colourful place when it comes to design. The culture affects how locals look at art.
Although I’m a minimalist artist and only use black most of the time, it still inspires me to see the colourful images my country makes. I think every Filipino is an artist deep inside.
“I never considered myself as a graphic designer before, but rather expressing my thoughts and ideas in shapes and patterns. But, I’ve been told it’s the same thing.”
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