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Linking art and biz through string art

string art

By DTI-Regional Operations Group
October 22, 2020

DAVAO CITY – In an artist’s perspective, selling or marketing one’s artworks could be as tedious as conceptualizing an output from scratch. But despite that, Sandie L. Padilla took the challenge by heart.

Padilla is among the fifth batch graduates of the Kapatid Mentor Me (KMME) program, an initiative of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and Philippine Center for Entrepreneurship (PCE) aiming to guide and mentor entrepreneurs according to their needs, with the help of experts in different fields. This batch graduated last July 18, 2019.

Padilla, who owns and manages Sandie String Art Design, was hesitant about starting his business when he came back to the Philippines after working in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia for 6 years. However, with his love for the arts and his determination to have a sustainable livelihood, he finally decided to open this venture.

Padilla, who used to work as a coffee shop barista while still abroad, is armed with the kind of creativity and commitment to come up with something that is unique and eye-catching. The idea of having a business related to using strings to create portraits came into mind while he was busy making remarkable pieces through wire sculptures and coffee bean art during his work breaks. Innovativeness is innate in him, and this became his ticket to discovering his talent in crafting artworks through strings. Who could have thought that the long strips of thread can be used to produce portraits?

It was a eureka moment for him when he started doing string art, he said that he remembered doing it when he was still in elementary. When asked about his motivation to pursue this, he shared that it is the uniqueness and craftsmanship of string art.

When Padilla came back to Davao City, he did not pursue his passion for string art right away. He tried working as a promo-merchandiser in a shopping mall at first, however, he felt that something was telling him to pursue art instead of getting an eight-hour job.

While navigating on Facebook and checking on anything that got his attention, he came across the official page of Negosyo Center Davao City. Through it, he found out about the different programs and services that the Negosyo Center provides. That was when he realized that it would be great to begin working on his own business.

“I immediately thought of turning my passion in string art into a business opportunity,” he narrated. From then on, he started attending various training activities, including those on how to run a business, and an orientation on how to avail a micro loan. With his unending interest in business, he enrolled in the KMME program, which provided his foundation as an entrepreneur through different sessions tackling the 10 modules.

Following his KMME graduation, the Sandie String Art Design started reaping the fruits of his labor, especially that Padilla participated in trade fairs, such as the Mindanao Trade Expo (MTE) and the renowned Manila FAME. This move made him earn between P15,000 and P77,000.

Despite the struggles he encountered as an entrepreneur, especially with being a newbie and the uniqueness of his concept, Padilla never lost the spark to go on. He is thankful to DTI, too, for walking with him in this journey.

The pandemic, which has affected business operations, did not stop him as well to continue with what he has started. Innovative as he is, Padilla maximized the social media and other means to widen his network, to sustain the expansion of his market. His untiring efforts resulted in new designs and the establishment of a bigger production area in his house.

He encouraged other artists to consider getting into business through the craft they love. For him, it is likewise a way to give back to the community where they operate.

”Ang kita sa abroad kay makita raman sad nimo diri sa Pilipinas basta og maningkamot ra man gyud diay ka (We can still earn here in the Philippines the amount we receive while working abroad if we continue to work hard),” he said.

It is Padilla’s dream to help the persons with disability and women in several communities in the future. He said he will establish his own gallery or workshop for him to teach them about string art, and earn from it.

For those interested to buy Padilla’s artworks, he can be contacted at 09665384644 or in his Facebook page, Sandie String Art Design.

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