Book of 40: 40 Ideas Inspired By 40 Years of Life in 40 Creative Collaborations, authored by Blackpencil Manila ECD Kat Gomez-Limchoc and sold by adobo publications, was launched to a jam-packed room of creative industry colleagues, friends, and family at A Space, Makati City on October 19.
The event, much like the book itself, brought together friends from the creative industry to 40 years worth of hard-earned wisdom and insights.
Ideas ranged from straightforward commandments such as “to-do lists have power” and “seize every reason for a celebration” to esoteric tips such as “delight in shrimp brains and Virgilio Martinez” and “dance in a fountain.” Besides, gorgeous illustrations, each of the 40 ideas is accompanied by beautiful prose that explains the personal context of each idea. Collaborators providing the apt and whimsical illustrations range from Dan Matutina to Ton Acuña, from daughter Snow Limchoc to husband Joel Limchoc.
At the launch, the author delivered a short speech that read in part, “This is just not my moment. As you see in the cover of the book, this is a book about 40 ideas inspired by 40 years of life in 40 creative collaborations. I actually worked with more than 50 collaborators to make ideas of all kinds come to life in this project. If you look around, we are surrounded by their artistry and their genius. I am so honored to have met so many talented people and to call you friends and collaborators.”
In an interview with adobo magazine, she shares, “For the most part, I picked collaborators to work on ideas that I knew would resonate with them. And most of them told me how apt their assigned idea was to them, or that it truly hit home for them. Some said it was something they themselves believed deeply, others said it was something that they really needed to learn. I loved how this project made me reconnect with people I had not worked with in years. It was great to be able to be the partner again of art directors I had loved working with in former agencies. I felt like a young copywriter again working with my amazing ex-partners. When I worked with my industry 'children,' I was so proud to see how they had all evolved into even better creatives.”
“One of my collaborators, Alexis Loinaz, is a very good friend who is a journalist based in New York. Working with him on an idea, I saw the side of him that was such a professional and competent journalist, and I was thrilled to witness it. Of course, I also loved working with people I just always wanted to work with. Dave Ferrer and Leigh Reyes are friends but I’ve never worked with them, so it was such a pleasure to be creating something with them. When I asked the street art group, Gerilya—one of whom is my creative group head in Blackpencil, Nico Zapanta—to paint a five-storey building with a mural that expressed my idea about Filipino leadership, I felt so many things: a patroness’ pride in these amazing artists who were doing this commissioned work for me, motherly concern for their safety, and their comfort as they worked through days and nights alternately very hot and rainy, a citizen’s happiness at seeing beautiful and intelligent art in the streets of Manila,” she confides.
The timely book was born of a health scare. In the book's foreword, she shares, “Sometime in my 39th year of life, I underwent a routine medical procedure. When my doctor came to see me in the recovery room, I was immediately afraid. This was the first time I had seen such a serious expression on my OB’s face. Usually, we talked about Darth Vader and Lord of the Rings toys as he administered my annual pap smear. I wasn’t used to see him looking so grim and doctor-y. He told me that he had found something unusual, that my cervix was “moth-eaten.”
To adobo, she explains, “It was a health scare that prompted me to think about celebrating my 40th birthday in a big and meaningful way, which included committing to the writing of a book. I had already made all these reflections and commitments to myself when I got back the results that said there was nothing to worry about. It is both a reflection and celebration of the life I have lived so far. So I guess you can say that I have entered midlife fully embracing it, with my dancing shoes on and my idea notebooks at the ready.”
She then confides, “Now that I have done what for years I felt was the daunting task of writing a book, I find myself having frequent thoughts of 'I can do a book about that' and 'that would make a nice book.” I am not that intimidated anymore at the thought. But, when I will actually do that next idea, I don’t know. Let me sleep first.”
For details, visit http://bookof40.com