How UP Los Banos’ Graphic Literature Guild Is Keeping Local Comics Alive
The Graphic Literature Guild (GLG) of the University of the Philippines in Los Baños (UPLB) is a student organization that caters to young artists, writers, and comic enthusiasts. It aims to promote Philippine graphic literature and its creators within the UPLB community, as well as improve the skills of its members in the creative process. It organizes a lot of activities and events to achieve its mission, and here are some of them.
Inktober, happening every October, is a month-long challenge where members create one drawing a day. The works are then promoted on GLG’s social media pages to highlight the skills and creativity of the artists. The prompts are based on the Inktober list of illustrator Jake Parker; these are just one-word ideas, and it’s up to the GLG artists to interpret them.
This year, for the prompt “dragon,” Mauro Lubin Alinea, a biology major, drew a detailed dragon that looks like it’s about to attack or eat a person. Last year, for “shielded,” he drew a dynamic image of a character battling a creature, and the word “Go!” implies he’s doing that so his friends could safely escape. The hero uses a shield to block the monster, and he himself is a shield to his friends.
“It fills me with joy and pride,” Mauro says of Elbikon. “I like seeing people admire the works of these local artists, who deserve to be acknowledged and praised for their contributions to the comic industry.” Paulo Tamondong, GLG’s guild master, loves Elbikon because it lets him meet many local artists. “Knowing they live in the same community as you makes their work much more exciting to read.”
GLG members participate at Komikon. Some sell the org’s merch, while some offer manpower for the entire event by being ushers and registrars. This gives them a better perspective of the Philippine comic scene and trains them to manage people and stressful situations. Zenith Loque, an agricultural economics major, shares, “I like volunteering. Not only because of the experience, privilege, and the perks, but also because I get to interact with some of the well-known local artists and content creators, as well as the art staff of big publishing companies.”
4. Volunteering at Lopez Elementary School
To incite interest in graphic literature and create a wider market for it, GLG exposes the students of Lopez Elementary School to comics. This year, the kids learned how to create unique superheroes based on their given personalities. The activity also sought to inspire a hopeful and positive outlook—like how the creation of superheroes and comic books in the 1930s uplifted people’s spirits during the Great Depression. Zenith points out, “Although kids like to base their drawings on well-known Marvel and DC heroes, they’re still proud of what they’ve made. Taking their work home brings a smile to their faces.”
5. Merchandise creation
To help ensure that the works of the members are marketable, GLG holds various workshops for the different aspects of comic making, like writing, storyboarding, drawing, coloring, and paneling. It also has a merchandise making workshop, where members learn to conceptualize different kinds of merch. Approved concepts are printed and sold at events like Komikon, Komiket, Elbikon, Summerkon, and Indieket. “I contributed some works that added to the lineup of merchandise,” says Zenith. “My favorite is a muscular Gudetama sticker—but members hate it because it’s excruciating to cut out.”
Today, the works of GLG members can be found on stickers, pins, cards, zines, and comic books. The comic books retail for P300, while the rest are often priced at P20. “I do profit from the merchandise I submit,” Zenith shares. “What I get, of course, depends on what I submit and how many pieces were sold. We depend on a standardized system of payment for the royalties.” The org invests its money in future merch and in production materials, such as rotary paper cutters and pin making machines.
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Here's my two cents on the letter, call for help of our medical frontliners. Let’s hear what our healthcare workers have to say and try to understand it from their point of view, they have every right to criticize how this medical crisis is being handled by the government... after all, they're the experts on the topic. Though we see the frontliners as heroes in our eyes, the lack of concrete plans from the government to combat COVID-19 makes them feel otherwise. Healthcare workers are already starting to voice out how they feel as though they are being sacrificed as they follow through their sworn oath. We wouldn’t send our soldiers to war unarmed and without a concrete plan; the same should be expected for our frontliners. How can we send them to battle without proper gear? Why is there still a debate on whether mass testing is needed or not when the experts on that field continuously insist its importance in flattening the curve? Why is this still not the priority when it’s literally our lives on the line? It’s not like the medical experts demanding for mass testing are just stating their opinion about this mindlessly, they studied this laboriously. Make them feel heard so that all the sacrifices that they’re doing and all the deaths of their colleagues are not in vain. More than the words of praises, what our medical professionals truly need right now is TANGIBLE support. Here is to hoping they get that soon. @errren.22
*Minor edits have been made for clarity
Here is a photograph taken yesterday from the photo shoot I did in our house. ? I really love dressing up and being dolled up, it makes me feel great and confident of who I am ?
I was actually hesitant to post these pictures of mine. My sister eveb asked me to change my Facebook Profile Picture and it took me hours to decide if I should. But, I realized that this is me, the real me. I should be confident of my body and of who I really am.
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They say time heals all wounds, but it has been ages - is heartbreak exempted?
I have forgotten when was the last time we shared a smile - the last time when I saw the glow in your eyes and the last time when you whispered an I love you to me. I have forgotten when, but here I am - writing to you again.
I do not know if you will read this or you will just add this one to my proses and poems that you left unread, but you see, I am still hoping. I am mailing the pain of us to the gods out there - hoping they can take the pain away. I should have gotten over you, but instead of forgetting and accepting our ending, I am writing about us in tissue sheets, carving about us on trees, telling about us on the back of my journals, hoping that a thousand or a million write ups about us, can make me forget about what happened.
I am writing, waiting for the point where I can no longer write anymore, for I have none to tell - but when? I have nothing in me anymore, but the memories of us - and no matter how hard I try put those to its own grave, the memories grow back like lilies in the swamp - painful and beautiful at the same time.
No matter how hard I try to silence those and put it at the back of my mind, those ring back, playing like the favorite song we used to listen. They say heartbreaks turn into poetry and that is what happening to us - but poetry should be dulcet and dreamy, why does ours sound like pain and agony? They say time heals all wounds, but it has been ages - is heartbreak exempted? Darling, I guess not.
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