Monday, 7 September 2015


So I wrote these exhibit notes while waiting for class one day ~ yes, I wrote my own notes this time; I'm a big girl now, after all ^o^;

Like a lot of other little girls growing up, I used to find mermaids fascinating. I remember drawing entire cities of them with giant, upright clams as buildings. There would be a hospital clam and a school clam and a mommy mermaid and a daddy mermaid going to his clamshell office, and other mermaids all going about their business…

This fascination with people who were half-human, half-fish stayed with me until I grew up. But as I grew older I realised I kept drawing mermaids the same way, and that "same way" was more or less a regurgitation of what I suppose you would call your "default mermaid", which was basically what you'd find in illustrated copies of Hans Christian Andersen or Edith Hamilton's "Mythology". 

It was around that time, I guess, when I kind of started to try finding myself artistically. And that was when I came to realise that nature itself, which is basically God's art, or the visualisation, expression or execution if you will, of His ideas, offered a far more infinite variety or possibilities for designing monsters in general and mermaids in particular. I began to experiment with different body types and different species, and fusing not just their lower and upper halves but characteristics like skin type and markings, other appendages and the effect of their lifestyle and habitat on their appearances.

This particular collection of mermaids (or just plain "fish" as I like to call them) is really just the tip of the tip of the tip of an iceberg that stretches faaar below the surface of the lowest oceanic trench. There are just waaay too many wonderful and awe-inspiring life forms out there, in the water, all bearing testimony to the greatness of their Creator. I could never hope to paint them all, although it would be fun to try. 

Because I think that for as many aquatic creatures there are out there, there are just as many possible variations on the human figure (not to mention personalities, which can also affect what humans look like). And after that, why stop at the human figure, when there's just so much more out there on land that you can combine with what—or who—you find out there in the water.

That said, with this collection, I've limited myself to the aquarium—a little drop of water in comparison to the mighty ocean, and to the "traditional mermaid formula" of human top half + fishy bottom. I'd like to thank God for making so many fantastic fish (and humans), Miss Cecile of Sigwada for allowing me to finally get this series out of my head and into the water, as it were, and to everyone who has supported and borne with me during its production. Hopefully I'll be able to explore this type of monster in a more in-depth (har) fashion someday and that I'll be able to present the findings of my explorations. 

- Jill, A Monster
July 31st! 2015

I just have a few shout-outs to some people (and People) I'd like to offer my most sincere and heartfelt thanks; as always, (however very much I'd like to sometimes haha) I don't make things in a vacuum:

God · Mama Mary · Guardian Angel · Saint Luke · Blessed Fra Angelico · Saint Francis de Sales · Saint Charles Borromeo · Dear Saint Catherine of Bologna · Saint Ephrem · Saint Joseph · Saint Maria Goretti · Saint Dominic Savio · Saint Thomas Aquinas · Saint Lawrence · Saint Benedict · Saint Michael the Archangel · Saint John Chrysostom · Saint Aloysius · Saint Alphonsus · Saint Mary Magdalene · Saint Augustine · Saint Matthias · Saint Catherine of Sienna · Saint Cecilia

Fr Saa · Bassints (for making my invite and all my layouts) · Hopa · Javo (for helping me with my Lapu-Lapu painting) · Sofie · Mom · Dad · Mozart ^_^ · Miss Cecile

So I've got a few previews on my online folio at, and a few things I need to sort out before I start making things again. Honestly, there's nothing I want to do with my life more than to make things, i.e. to paint, and to draw; to make the best jillapaintings and jilladrawings I possibly can, to get as good at it as I possibly can, before I die (I don't know if I'm getting any better at it; I hope I am ^o^; ) ~ but, like I said, I don't make things in a vacuum, so… 

So please pray for me, I guess, because there are still so many, many things I want to make ^_^; Hopefully, they are worth making ^o^;