There are a lot of things I write (and don’t write) on this blog that says a lot about me. Observant people, like Juned for example, can actually read right through my entries. I can be pretty cryptic about things that bother me, but I guess that’s the liar-repellent shield I have working 😛 That’s probably why I’m quite curious about what other people would ask me should I give them the liberty to ask me five questions about anything, and everything.

Here are my answers to Migs’ five questions…

  1. We already know about your problems with bad web design clients. Tell us about your best and favorite clients, and your great experiences with them.
  2. Tricky, tricky 😛

    My best experiences with clients are probably those we do as an outsourced company. Unfortunately, these are the same clients and projects that we can’t divulge info for due to the competitive nature of ad agencies. The bulk of our work are outsourced work, which is actually the same reason why we don’t put much on our portfolio. We do outsourced work for agencies both here and abroad.

    We do have one outsource client that I think I can consider our “favorite.” They pay on time, and they pay fair. I think this is due to the fact that their company is being managed by people who used to do freelance work, so they know the value of an original design and respect your rights as a designer. Nothing beats a client who pays fairly and transacts honestly 🙂

  3. As a web design artist, (cliche alert) who are your influences? Do you belong to a design school of thought?
  4. Hmm… That’s a difficult one. As a designer, my work is strongly influenced by industry trends and customer satisfaction. Our design company has a wide range of clients in varying industries (individuals, government, agriculture, furniture, media, NGOs, etc.), so I come up with designs that are apt for their organization/business. When Flash animation was the “in” thing, we gave them Flash. Now, the popular trend is using gradients, big text, and curvy edges—so we give our clients that. I usually look at trends by surfing design galleries like CSS Mania, CSS Import, and CSS Zen Garden.

    But as an artist, it’s different. I see being an artist as being able to create an artwork without a specific structure in mind (unlike design). Art isn’t defined by a purpose, but simply an expression of the human experience. And in this field (if you call it field), I can say who my influence is other than my parents (who are also artists by the way): MC Escher. I’ve always loved his graphic work. As a kid, I pored over my parents’ MC Escher books for hours at a time. There’s just something about his representation of life in his work that’s really captivating.

  5. As a Bayanihan Blog Network founder, what Pinoy stuff should people be blogging more about?
  6. Hehe. I’m not a Bayanihan Blog Network founder—it’s the Pinoy Pets Network that I co-founded with Connie—but I do blog about weddings for BBN.

    However, as one of the organizers of the Philippine Blog Awards, I can definitely say that there are more niches in the Philippine blogosphere still left untapped. If you can remember, the Personal category was the most saturated. I suppose it’s because of the personal nature of blogs that makes them quite difficult to really focus on specific niches.

    It’s also this personal nature of blogging that makes it extremely difficult to say what I think people should be blogging about. What matters to me might not matter to other people, and vice-versa. People blog about everything already, but in my opinion, it would be great if we could have more “niched” blogs.

  7. You posted about taking care of your sister with a mental illness. What can you share to people who don’t know how it’s like?
  8. This may sound cliché, but taking care of a sister with a mental illness really is a life-changing experience. It took us a few years before my parents and I could accept the fact that my younger sister is Schizophrenic, and not possessed or bothered by something supernatural. Maybe it’s because of the strong influence of mysticism here in our country, but I think it’s more on the fact that we just never thought it could happen to our own family.

    Seeking medical help for my sister was the hardest decision we ever made. Not only would we be confining her to months away from us with only strangers for company, but it would also mean that she would be taking in more medicines. My sister is already epileptic, then you add pills for her mental illness. Our family friend and doctor told us that the medicines could eventually damage her liver in the long run, and in turn shorten life expectancy. This, I think, was the turning point of our experience as a family.

    We had a choice. If we don’t let her take the drugs and just let nature take its course (and of course, we’ll just need to live with the violent tantrums), she could live longer, but she’ll be trapped in a different world. If we let the doctors put her on drugs for the rest of her life, she will be able to enjoy life as it is, but we cannot expect her life expectancy to be as long.

    I think this was one of those instances when you just can’t afford to be selfish. Yes, she can be with us longer without the drugs, but that’s being selfish. It won’t be easy, but we chose to give her a chance to live happily regardless of the repercussions.

    Experiences like this can change your life. You realize that there are more important things in life than a new set of clothes or why some girl or guy ignored you when you said hello. They could bring you down to earth from your ideas of a perfect world, but really, they’re not that bad. You won’t take life for granted, and you’ll be able to experience it fully with the people you care about. That’s living 🙂

  9. If you had a chance to have a famous/historical dog for a pet, who would it be?
  10. I won’t trade my three little dogs (Sheero, Choknat and Harry) for any famous pooch in the world, even if some of them did great things like those shown in Cell Dogs or have fought in wars like those in Vietnam. Besides, I think Sheero is famous enough in her own right! (She’s the one with me on the video presentation at the 2007 Philippine Blog Awards Night).

    Aside from being “famous,” my little Sheero did save my life once already. I had an asthma attack during one of the most violent tantrums my sister had, but in the scuffle, my parents didn’t notice me gasping for breath already. Sheero did. She pawed and barked at me (as a way of assuring me, I guess), then went to my parents and barked at them like mad. I don’t know how she did it, but my dad said she acted like she wanted them to follow her and gave the impression that something was wrong. Luckily, my sister was already restrained too, so they were able to get to me to help. See? My own dog is a hero!!! 🙂

    My dogs have also been the inspiration of many of my projects—Pinoy Pets Network with Connie, Pinoy Dog-Lover, and of course, this very blog, Kutitots. And as much as my husband doesn’t want to admit it, a big chunk of our blogging income comes from our dog-inspired blogs. I can’t wait for the day when I can blog, “my dogs bought me a laptop” or something like that.

Your turn. Here are the rules:

1. Leave me a comment saying “Interview me.”
2. I will respond by emailing you five questions. I get to pick the questions.
3. You will update your blog with the answers to the questions.
4. You will include this explanation and an offer to interview someone else in the same post.
5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions.