Happy International Women's Day to all the women and mothers out there. A challenged world is an alert world, and from challenge comes change. So this year, let's all choose to challenge!
To celebrate this milestone, Mama on Palette will be dedicating this month to help forge a more gender-equal world. We believe that celebrating women's achievements and increasing visibility while calling out inequality is key.
Hence, we have produced a special series for this year's IWD featuring three amazing mother artists.
First up in this series, we have Amanda.
Meet Amanda Lapus Santos, a mother of two and a visual artist who enjoys working with vibrant color, texture, and expressionism in her artworks. She has been professionally painting since 2012. Before being a full-time visual artist, she worked in various industries such as finance and events management to find herself returning to what she truly loves - art.
She dabbles in graphics, printmaking, murals, and even embroidery. Still, her bread-and-butter are her commissioned acrylic and oil works. Through her art journey, she has realized that her passion for creating art can only be eclipsed by her desire to gather like-minded and talented people together.
In 2016, she joined a Singapore-based artist collective called ‘UncannedArt.’ When they revamped and changed to ‘ArtSeize,’ she was part of the team that helped recruit artists that comprise the group now.
1. Art Is A Necessity For Her
During this pandemic, you realize that art is not merely some sort of luxury or form of escape. It’s a necessity. Art is beauty, music, film, dance, literature, and an appreciation and discipline for all these things. Along with love and family, it’s what makes life worth experiencing. Art is ever-present, and when a piece of art impacts you or hits you in the gut without warning- that’s the best feeling too.
2. Art Has Made Her A Better Parent
The practice of art makes it easy to show my kids the world not as it is but how it can be. When my son, who is now four, sits in front of a blank paper and asks me what to write or draw, I tell him, “Use your imagination. Draw something wacky. Something that doesn’t exist.”
Art makes me excited to share and teach. I’m excited to share the books that I loved when I was growing up. When we’re dancing around the living room, I play old classics on Spotify in a way to educate them on the art of the past. For them, everything is new. But for me, it becomes a rediscovery.
Art helps make parenting more alive, more colorful, and more meaningful.
3. Raising Her Children Was The Best Thing She Ever Did
My proudest accomplishment to date would be raising my kids with my husband in a hands-on way. This may not sound like much to others, but I’m proud of how we have managed well with no helper or relatives residing in Singapore.
It’s the little things like daily chores, the daily grind, and still making sure to carve out time to ensure that their childhood is a warm and memorable one filled with fun, silliness, and quality time.
4. She Fights Many Battles Daily
Therein lies the most challenging part of no-help, hands-on parenting — I try my best not to succumb to any nagging feelings of others who may judge me for not prioritizing building an impressive career or portfolio. There are many days when I ask myself if I’m doing enough. Could I manage my time better? And then it becomes a tug-of-war inner battle of whether or not I’d be missing on crucial moments in their infant and toddler lives that I can never get back. And choosing the latter to be more important always wins out in the end.
5. She Seizes Opportunities As They Come
2020 has taught us that life is unpredictable. The world can change in an instant. So we really don’t know how much time we have... all the end goals of our long-term plans are now all up in the air. When I start to work on any new project now, I ask myself, “Why wait?” or “What can I do or make that my family, my kids, could be proud of?”.
Because down the line, should my children ever be stuck in a crisis or a moment of feeling paralyzed or demotivated, ideally, I’d like for them to look to me as an example of someone who didn’t wait too long to make a move, but who somehow managed to prioritize what mattered - and that’s family, always.
6. She Believes In #WomenEmpowerment
I believe we are blessed to be alive in this day and age, wherein people are learning how crucial it is to have empowered women in every society. The #MeToo Movement, the remarkable performance of female world leaders in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and even how women share and empathize with each other’s struggles and accomplishments globally over the Internet - all these things signal progress. But they shouldn’t just remain a signal to wake up, but rather, to rise up.
Whether it’s through the arts or how we parent and educate our children, whether it’s through how we push forward in our professions, and being more vocal — I think it’s high time we women took a more significant and more vital role in leading this world out of the environmental and socio-political upheaval it’s in.
This may sound like a heavy role to place on the ‘Art Lover Mamas community.’ Still, a strong sisterhood that believes in promoting art, family, love, beauty, and unity sounds like precisely what the world needs more of.
Thank you, Amanda, for sharing your inspirations and achievements as not only an artist but as a mother. Click here to find out more about Amanda, and her beautiful artworks!
Read Art Lover Mama Regina Ong's story here!
Meet Regina Ong, a loving mother to two children.
Her love for art begun at a young age when she often found herself doodling on her textbooks and spending after-school hours creating paper dolls. Even though she is not a professional artist, she still uses art as a platform to connect and bond with her two children.
Meanwhile, keep an eye out for two more special features coming up this month. Subscribe to our blog or follow us on Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn to be notified with new content!
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