Creative Space: Sasha Martinez and Her Gorgeous Journals
Funny how we stumbled upon Sasha Martinez's gorgeous journals on Instagram's Explore page. Who knew that we'd discover something so beautifully handmade hiding in between Instagram hearts and hash tags. We love how her feed marries analog and digital and gives major creative inspo in just a few swipes on a phone screen. We went ahead and reached out to Sasha to ask her more about her journaling and creative space. Read on to find more about her beautiful work.
Get to know her. "My name is Sasha Martinez, nearing 27, haunting Quezon City. I'm a writer by profession, and right now I'm taking a bit of rest after six years in civil service."
Her journaling history and style. "I first started journaling very young, around eight or nine years old. I began with one of those diaries with decorative golden lock-and-key, because a notebook's main purpose for the early years of journaling was to keep secrets. My record-keeping has since sampled whatever kind of notebook I can get my hands on, and secrets turned into monologues. It was all words at first, rants and raves and rambles; eventually, they turned into records of days, and a lot of navel-gazing. I started incorporating art into my notebooks about a year ago—unifying them, when before words belonged in one journal and art belonged in another. It's been revelatory, the mixing and melding together."
When she sits down to write and collage. "I journal as I the day goes on. I'm always trying to record as faithfully as I can not only events but my reactions to them: What they make me feel, what they make me think. My journal is always at the ready. This also means that I can go a few pages without much art, save for a stamp there or a snippet of washi tape here. But at the end of every day, when it's all quiet and concluding, I sit down and assemble a collage on a page—or on half a page, envisioning words eventually curling around the edges if the art. I try not to use decoration as an afterthought; there's always a balance that has to be struck between what you write down and the art that you make. They should coexist."
On the table. "My desk has sprawled to include small bookshelves on either side of it, and then a trolley, to include materials and tools and a lot of old books. I've boxes of used stamps in one corner, drawers of washi and rubber stamps in another, and pens upon pens and a lot of glue in between. (And my cat is a desk mainstay; I work with him and around him, too.) On-the-go journaling is more streamlined: All you need is a pen and your notebook."
Go-to stores for materials. "I'm thankful for stores like Common Room and Hey Kessy for bringing arts and crafts into the spotlight. The work of other artists are much easier to source, as well as the materials you need to make your own. Online stores like Hobby Depot and Crafty Lane and Bee Happy are wonderful resources for stuff that's not available in local stores. And Booksale is a treasure trove of old books for collages."
For those who want to start creative journaling. "When I started putting collages into my dedicated journal, I called them "artmess"—an acknowledgment that art isn't perfection, that exploring something new hardly ever leads to something slick and shiny. But you have to begin, and throw yourself wholeheartedly into it—and you have to hold close what you want your art to be, how it interacts with what you write down, even as you keep your mind open to new ideas and inspiration and even influences."
Just start, and don't be afraid of mess when you know it's what will lead you to art that fulfills you.
For your inspiration. "Instagram has been such a font of inspiration, and it has the warmest journaling community made of kindred souls from the world over. There are some artists I really admire, and I hope to one day feel the same way about my art as I do for theirs. Off the top of my head: @tokwap, @tofzapanta, @jelsuarez, @nick_bantock_art, @leeamckenna, @jose_naranja, @caitmceniff, @joychong, @ronnycakes, @thepaperedview."
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To the Person Who Does Not Know Any 1D Song
By: CJ Reyno
Never in my wildest dream I imagined to meet someone who does not know a single One Direction song or who does not even know, Harry Styles, Louis Tomlinson, Liam Payne, Niall Horan, and err… Zayn Malik. How did you spend your teenagehood without listening to their songs? The disrespect to my #StyPayHorLikSon. My initial reaction, Vas Happenin’?
Since I was 12 years old, that was way back on 2012, One Direction songs have been my official life soundtrip, my go-to songs whenever I feel happy, sad, mad, excited, and etch. I can still remember how people went crazy just to attend their concert here in the Philippines. I must admit, I was one of those. LOL. The group was also dubbed as, “The Biggest Boyband in the World”. They were an era. You really left me in awe when you told me that you do not know a single One Direction song. Their songs are gold. But I was a little hopeful when a new messaged popped up on our conversation, “Hey I know one, Make You Beautiful”.
You do not know how my world collapsed after reading your message. I would like to say that I appreciate the effort, thanks, but they do not have a song entitled, Make You Beautiful, because it is, What Makes You Beautiful. I tried to explain but you said that they are just the same. (Tip: Never fight with a Directioner when it comes to this because we will not let our guards down). No! They are not the same. How can you make this big mistake? LOL. What Makes You Beautiful is One Direction’s debut song. Almost everyone knows this, “you’re insecure, don’t know what for,” ring a bell? The music video of this surpassed 1 billion views on Youtube. On my 21 years of existence, you are the very first person who told me this “I-Thought-It-Was-A-Joke-But-You-Are-Serious” statement.
As a persuasive fangirl, I thought to myself that I should make you appreciate their music, that you should know that it is What Makes You Beautiful, not Make You Beautiful. The group may be in hiatus but their music is and will always remain superior. You are hard-headed lad. We even when to the point where you challenged me to treat so I can make you watch their music video. Am I even surprised that I agreed to this? HAHA. I feel like an agent trying to persuade her customer to buy a property on our company. You do not know how happy I was when you sent me your video listening to What Makes You Beautiful. I felt like I successfully closed a deal with my client. Not to exaggerate but I really jumped because of happiness after watching your video. It was the first message I checked that morning. Thank you for your effort, so much appreciated. Funny how our conversation starts with your innocence on One Direction until it goes deeper and last longer. Up All Nigh conversations which turned to almost Midnight Memories. Ironic how a Directioner had developed an admiration on someone who dislikes her favorite boys? Just like One Direction’s song, Change My Mind, “Never felt like this before. Are we friends or are we more?” I guess, like Liam’s line on Love You Goodbye, “It's inevitable everything that's good comes to an end. It's impossible to know if after this we can still be friends.”
I was happy that I made you listen to One Direction. At least I made you appreciate and made you aware that there is a song called, What Makes You Beautiful, not Make You Beautiful. I am happy that you already found your Girl Almighty. Wish me luck on finding my Summer Love. xoxo, Your Directioner friend
Here's a fan art that I made for Lee Joo Young of Itaewon class! I've been making digital illustration since last year and I'm happy that I was able to see my improvements. I'm also happy to see people's reactions and support for my craft even though all of it are made through my phone (adobe illustrator) only ????. You don't actually have to use expensive or complicated medium as long as you know how to be creative and like what you're doing, then you can do it. ????