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BKBT Interview | Mastering D-I-Y Artistry With Sef Quemado

Posted on June 24 2015

BKBT Concept

Hailing from the Philippines artist Sef Quemado, a star in this unisex androgyny movement, has mastered the concept of aesthetic, taste, and art. We rock with his d-i-y style as it translates to a host of minimal accessories from iPhone cases to computer charger organizers. BKBT Concept caught up with the self described 'awkward soul' to discuss influences, design, and his upcoming projects.

Who is Sef Quemado? (we want to know the essence of you as an individual)

I'm a visual artist living in Metro Manila, Philippines. I have a sweet tooth and I love cats.

I was reading a few of your blogs and saw you're a very DIY inventor for minimal designs. How did you begin your journey?

 Art and design have always been the core of my life. Being called artistic gave me something to feel good about as a kid who was not blessed with good math genes (haha!). Art was basically the only thing I seemed to really excel at when I was in school. 

I've always been a do-it-yourself person. As a kid, I would work on little projects to satisfy my desire to create; I would make clothes and furnitures for my barbies, paper dolls, personalized notebooks, friendship bracelets, mermaid paintings, etc. I vividly remember how proud I was of my creations.

From an early age, I already knew what I wanted to do—paint, design and create beautiful things. Hence, I pursued my love for art and earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree majoring in Advertising from the University of Santo Tomas (UST) College of Fine Arts and Design in 2012.

What's the inspiration behind making phone cases? They're so minimalist, I love them.

Thank you! The inspiration comes from my obsession with marble prints. It started out as a fun project. Initially, I was looking for a 'marble' case, but I couldn't find it anywhere; so I decided to make my own. My friends liked my phone case so much, they asked me to make some for them. I never thought my 'marble obsession' would turn into a business.

Artistically, who are your influencers/inspirations?

Will Cotton, Mark Ryden, Tim Burton, Danny Roberts, Juun.J, Alexander Wang, Phoebe Philo, Francis Libiran, Ivania Carpio and Paul Jung—I love them to pieces!

What do you believe is essential to the work of an artist?

 As an artist, developing a thick skin is essential. Some people will love your art. Others will hate it. Just keep doing you!

Your style is very unisex and minimalist. What do you hope to express when you wake up and dress in the morning?

I work from home, so I don't get dressed up everyday. Though if I'm going out, I try to look better than my 'home' self. I'm one of those people who has to listen to music while getting ready—it's like my religion! I always aim to look androgynous, and minimal, but still aesthetically pleasing (it's all about having great basics and classic pieces, hunty!). Sometimes, I get weird stares when I'm out in public. I think some people are looking at me because they don't know if I'm a girl or a guy. I love seeing the look of confusion on their faces. Haha. 

What kind of impact do you want to leave in industry or in the world?

I don't know. I'll just do my own thing—and see where my art/heart takes me.

What projects are you currently working on? Can you tell more details on that?

I'm currently working on my dream project! It's a personal project and it's something I've always wanted to do. It's a secret for now though, so I can't say much. Sorry! 



Sef Quemado