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Filadelfa Rodriguez - Art is My Play, My Solace

I am a Filipino mom of two based in Singapore. I love everything that is visually creative. That's probably why I am drawn to art. My inspiration comes from almost anything I set my eyes on, but mostly by the vibrant shades of nature.

I grew up in a small, far-flung town in the Philippines where its natural beauty remains untouched –constantly reminiscing the lush colours of the forest, picturesque sunset, gushing rapids of the river. Yet, travelling has awakened my artistic innocence, as I discovered unique expressions of art from different parts of the world.

Art is my form of play, my solace

While other kids enjoy the bliss of outdoors, I remember getting more excited by torn notebooks & blunt pencils to bring my next “mess-terpiece” to life. I would go on for hours – sketching away people, everyday objects, nature or anything else I imagine. Art was my form of play, my solace - I could live my dreams through art. My hope is that someday, my own children will find a similar fondness for it.

I always have a lot to think about – looking after my child, meeting work demands, maintaining a household. I enjoy the chaos of it all but it takes a heavy toll, mentally & physically. Art has become my medium for rest – not just in front of a canvass but also through music and photography. I am heartened to see my child following suit – donning her mini-camera outdoors, enjoying her paint-by-numbers and mimicking everything else that I have found a passion for.

Pandemic: a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to accompany my loved one

I had a moniker around my friends – the weekend traveller. I love exploring different places and planned to continue this even after my child was born. But when the pandemic happened, I was worried that I couldn’t show her the world the way I wanted to. What I didn’t realize then was the silver lining – a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to spend as much time with her at home. We enjoyed every minute of it – nature walks, art sessions, show and tell and everything in between. It was never about where we go, but what we do together that brings us closer.

“Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working” – Pablo Picasso

There are so many reasons to give up my passion but I only need two people to convince me otherwise – my husband and daughter. I never had the confidence to let others see my work but it was them who believed in me, believed that my work deserves more than just resting behind blank canvasses. Slowly, I opened up myself and began to feel reassured by the positive response from others who welcomed my art into their home. I continue to pursue my passion, because I know there will always be two people supporting me in whatever endeavour I choose in life.

When I was growing up, I witnessed first-hand how my parents’ hard work allowed us to rise above the adversities we faced. They never gave up, persevered through difficult times and it was because of their grit that I am where I am today. It was an invaluable lesson that has guided my own growth as a woman, as a mother. If I aspire to do something, be something, I strive towards it and turn ideas into reality. Ideas are great, but without hard work, they will only remain in our minds.

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