CEBU

This Cebuana mom makes beautiful paintings on bags and we are obsessed

Photos by Emmanuela Monique Delantar Guinoo

ARE you planning to have your items customized with hand paintings? Well, Monica by Monique got your bags—er, back!

From woven bags, magnets, shoes — you name it — the artist behind Monica by Monique has the talent to tailor-make them according to your personality.

The artist



Emmanuela Monique Delantar Guinoo was raised by her mother and a loving grandfather, former Cebu City mayor Eulogio "Yoyong" Borres.

Emmanuela is now a full-time mom to children Leighton Monica and Emmanuel Ezekiel. Aside from doing hand paintings, she also works full-time as a research specialist for a prestigious company in Cebu City.

How it started



The name Monica is from Emmanuela's firstborn "Monica." One time, her daughter wanted a unicorn bag; however, Emmanuela couldn not find one so she had this idea of painting on one.

Her friends saw her amazing hand paintings and "it was just dominoes from then on," said Emmanuela.

"Monica’s request was my first creation, so the brand is dedicated to her," she added.

She started doing custom paintings in 2016.

The artists' inspiration



Emmanuela said the inspiration behind her artworks is the appreciation and excitement her clients give her every time they make an order.

Challenges in the 'art business'



Emmanuela said she never doubted her art business because, in the first place, she never thought of it as a "business." For her, she is doing it because she enjoys it.

For her, the only challenge she had as an artist was what others call "art block."

"Working on custom orders requires you to be very creative. Sometimes, it's mentally draining. I wanted each painting to be very unique that I sometimes run out of ideas," she said

The pandemic effect



Unlike others, the pandemic turned out to be an opportunity for Emmanuela's business. It was the time her business got better.

For her, the pandemic was a breather for her and her clients.

Through her art, she saw the beauty in life, to always give joy and hope. Through that mindset, she was able to express it through her art.

Message to aspiring artists



Emmanuela reminded aspiring artists to always believe in their art.

"Creativity takes good timing, determination, and lots of inspiration. So always be passionate. Make sure you value your art. Believe in your product because if you don't, no one else will," she said.

How to order



For those who are planning to have their items customized through hand paintings, one may check its Facebook page at Monica by Monique.

Your mom, wife, girlfriend, friends, or significant other will surely love them.

Photos by Emmanuela Monique Delantar Guinoo

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