This month’s featured artist hails from the beautiful Bicolandia. She’s someone I should have met during my younger years. Meet Bem.
Featured Artist of the Month: Bem Zenit
A maker in the making, she’s a fellow creative from the beautiful land of Bicolandia! Personally, I have been admiring her works since another friend of mine introduced her [works] to me. Most of her works involve calligraphy, specifically, pointed pen calligraphy.
Get to know Bem
What made you start with this craft?
Two (2) weeks after graduating from College in 2015, I traveled from Bicol and attended a Pointed-pen Calligraphy workshop in Alabang. I thought Alabang is already in Manila. Hahaha! Then, I fell in love with Calligraphy and Craft workshops ever since.
How long have you been doing the craft?
2 years and 1 month
Why did you pursue it?
I took up Digital Illustration and Animation (more on 3D and computer graphics) in college, and I wanted to try something more intimate/handmade as a form of ‘after-college-breather’. It’s funny how the let’s-learn-something-new-hobby turned into a career. 😂
More about Bem
Did you have struggles in pursuing the craft?
Personally, it was my self-doubt and socializing capabilities (HAHA). Since I’m a fan of so many Filipino artists on Instagram, sometimes I can’t help comparing their progress with my progress. I’m also not used to talking in front of people or to people I’ve just met, but since I’ve started conducting workshops– I had to do a lot of adjustments on my part.
Learn something new.
What keeps you doing the craft?
I want to be good at it, or build something from it. I may or may not do Calligraphy 5 years from now, but I’m sure it will help me explore more art forms and experiences that would help me grow as a creative.
Top 3 favorite tools?
- Mangaka flex black brush pen
- Cotman Watercolor
- Muji notebook
If you are to share your tips and tricks to newbies, what would those be?
Aside from awesome artists, find inspiration from choosing themes (for me, most of my artworks are vintage-themed or rustic). And practice, attend workshops, and take advantage of current opportunities! 🙏🏽
If you were to describe the craft in three words, what will those be?
- Sexy (it is!!!)
Berlin | Momi BerlinNovember 19, 2017 at 4:02 PM
I like her principle in life – learn something new. it is only through learning that we welcome change, improvement and development.. through learning something new, you also get to discover yourself and your capacity.
ROBERT LEEDecember 6, 2017 at 5:07 PM
Very nice, Kristine. Once again, you provided a platform for other artists such as Pauline. I had fun reading the simple yet refreshing interview as well as look at some of her works. When Pauline mentioned her doing or not doing calligraphy five years from now, it brought to mind Steve Jobs and the evolution of fonts. Once, calligraphy was a useless craft. It is limited, and not a lot of people could ever find a good use, except in some instances such as packaging and labels. Remember, this was in the 60s to 70s. Then Steve took calligraphy, and from then on, it became the foundation of modern fonts on the computer. Where does the craft take one? I think it is more about an individual choosing to take it wherever one sees fit.
oranaDecember 6, 2017 at 7:44 PM
OH I love her style! classic yet a little messy. Just like how we are now in this day and age. Taking a little from the past, taking a little from now, taking a bit from social media and making a wonderful mess of it all. I grew up with a classic calligraphist so I have a bit of a bias to it all.
Berlin | Momi BerlinDecember 6, 2017 at 11:29 PM
Rereading this, I have come to appreciate more of her works. She is indeed very talented. One could see through her lettering that she has mastered the art of calligraphy. It seems she could effortlessly write in style. Not because she is an expert but because of her deep passion. I still see her doing calligraphy five years from now. It is something very hard to dismiss in her system and in her heart.
JoannaDecember 7, 2017 at 2:09 AM
One thing I have learned since I have started blogging is that everyone’s progress and style is different and we should never attempt to measure ourselves by looking up at other bloggers. Sure, we should always learn from them but do not compare because each of us is unique. This would be my advice to Ben. Her work is very beautiful.
Gene RoseDecember 7, 2017 at 1:39 PM
In any craft, self-doubt is probably our biggest demon. Not to mention comparing ourselves to others. Yet, find our way back to doing the craft because we LOVE it. Her works are truly admirable. Perhaps, intimate, sexy and classy.
IndraniDecember 7, 2017 at 1:55 PM
Good to know Bem! She is so talented, I am already loving her works.
I also liked her frankness about not being able to open up to new people.
But I am sure with time she will gain more confidence and interact and promote herself more.
JillDecember 7, 2017 at 2:37 PM
Hello Bem! I love your strokes! Good luck in your passion. I hope more people will get to know. I hope I can meet you someday too! 🙂
NathalieDecember 7, 2017 at 3:30 PM
When will you feature me here? 😛 Haha. Kidding. So many people are into calligraphy these days (the 21k+ member of CPH alone is more than enough proof) that it’s hard to stand out and actually make a career of it. That’s why I admire those who really pursue this passion and actually profit from it. So inspiring! I can only wish I had even half their talent and dedication as an artist.
Milton CoyneDecember 7, 2017 at 10:11 PM
My goodness, I wish I could write as flawless like that! .. that first photo about Wedding Commitment prayer was soooo goood! It looks like those fonts you can buy online and yet this lady managed to make it by hand.. wow! Not to mention her skills on flatlay photography which made her images even more captivating!
I really hope I can unleash the artist in me to.. even not thru calligraphy but in other form of arts as well
Swayam TiwariDecember 8, 2017 at 2:07 AM
Wow, you are some hard working person. Despite having a punishing schedule, you have taken time out to feature Bem. That is so selfless of you. In India, calligraphy is a vanishing art, though.
Ma. Theresa MartinezDecember 8, 2017 at 6:55 AM
Wow. She’s pretty and her crafts were very pretty too. I think her course is also an advantage on pursuing her hobby into career. It was such a pretty sight to see when people turned their hobbies into their work. They enjoy and get to be paid in the things they love to do.