Tuesday, 1 March 2016

Freebie: Patience & Appreciation (Printable + Phone Wallpaper)

They were gone - everything - past lettering work, future lettering and illustrations I had intended to showcase, logos and headers from upcoming collaborations, styled photographs, family vacation photographs, school assignments.

In the last couple of months of 2015, the portable hard disk containing all my design and personal files had become faulty, and the price for its repair and file recovery was far too costly - more than ten times the original price of the hard disk itself. As a college student who was still studying, I was had no means to afford the four-digit repair cost.

The loss of my diligently-organised folders in the hard disk (which I had previously committed much of my time to construct) had upset me so much then that it came to a point where I wanted to throw in the towel.

I subsequently subjected myself to the deplorable state of remorse, lamenting how I should've opted for cloud storage, or used other methods. Returning to the one therapeutic activity that could take my mind off things, however, inevitably called for the labourious task of put the remaining, salvageable files back in order.

So during the last semester break, I had undertaken the arduous challenge of rebuilding the library of all my lettering and design work. Re-organising, re-editing, re-scanning any physical copies that were left. It was time-consuming and labourious, but without any reason, the only way to circumvent the problem. 

'Two things define you: your patience when you have nothing, and your attitude when you have everything.' - Imam Ali 

Patience Quote Printable and Phone Wallpaper / Lettering and Photo by The Happy Candle @thehappycandle
Patience Quote Printable and Phone Wallpaper / Lettering and Photo by The Happy Candle @thehappycandle

Version 1 // White

Simple Download
Floral Download

Phone (Andriod/iPhone)
Simple 1080 X 1920
Floral 1080 X 1920

Version 2 // Black

Simple Download
Floral Download

Phone (Andriod/iPhone)
Simple 1080 X 1920
Floral 1080 X 1920

The freebie for this post is just a little reflective reminder I'd like to share after my much-needed test. I've been practicing more each weekend, experimenting with new brushes and brush pens to create a neater lettering piece each time. I acknowledge that it is not the best, and there are improvements to make. Documenting my lettering progress has made this space such a beneficial learning journey and I am ever so grateful to have family, friends and readers to share it with.

As for losing family vacation photographs in the hard disk, it finally occurred to me that living in the moment is far more important than possessing those scenic images. Captured moments in physical form are doubtlessly beautiful, but being present and mindful as each new experience sweeps in supersedes this. The fleeting nature of each irreplaceable second makes it even more breathtaking than we can imagine.

It's difficult to imagine, but losing everything was the best thing that has ever happened in the recent months. Having some patience and a sense of appreciation will certainly shape resilience, and our seemingly innate ability to survive the worst life can hurl towards us.

Until next time ♥ 

Lettering and photo by me

Printables created by Dian from The Happy Candle. For personal use only. Not for distribution or resale. Please link back to original post if shared. Thank you.

Thursday, 11 February 2016

Growing The Garden (+ Reader Survey)

It seemed unimaginable that I just spent the last couple of months in university - the institute of 'thriving talent, desire and opportunity'. I suppose time flies while we're bustling through the avid, networking community and endless friends-of-friends introductions. While orientating myself in the fresh atmosphere and joining the pursuit of self-exploration with thousands of others, it was no surprise that some anxiety was involved.

We find ourselves clinging on to the safety of our comfort zones as we commence the year with new beginnings, whether moving to different neighbourhoods, starting in a new school or a new job. It's natural to be intimidated; everyone has reservations to new experiences. It's only important that this doesn't prolong, for each time we turn down the audacity to make new decisions and overcome challenges, we evade the tugging at our sleeves to grow as a person.

The beauty of a garden lies in its cultivation. This especially rings true in self development while experiencing new challenges. There are gardens are in our hearts, filled with various botanical elements, depending on how we develop as a person. It only takes some water and heart to nurture it.

Never mind weeds and setbacks. Adversities build character. Procrastinating to subdue them or avoiding them completely harbours apathy. One should be able to tell the difference between hanging in there, and constantly asking time to hang on. And as much as I'd like to take heart from what is mentioned, admittedly, I've yet to instill this upon myself, so this has been dutifully placed as one of the resolutions for this year. 

What then, would be the grand plan to achieve this? For a start, know and acknowledge that we're not alone - soak ourselves in the relief that these challenges are not only unique to us, then, go through them together. The world is a much brighter with family and friends. I can never be more grateful to God for giving me such supportive and encouraging people who care; we're all given so much to be thankful for.

Hopefully by understanding this, instead of chastising ourselves or surrendering to these challenges, we'll not only have compassion for others who are struggling, but also learn how resilient we really are.

Until next time ♥


It's refreshing to be finally back from my near-three-month break. I'd love to hear updates from readers of how things have been and catch up with everyone. Some might have also noticed that I've put up a little link to a short reader survey. I've received some feedback since - all of which bear the sweetest and most helpful responses. If you haven't attempted it, feel free to do so. All feedback mentioned will undoubtedly be taken into consideration to make The Happy Candle a more creative and inspiring place for all. Your response and time taken to review is greatly appreciated.

This semester is going to be much busier, but several posts have already been planned out for the future, in which we can all look forward to. There are several projects I've been busy with last winter which have yet to debut, so it's going to be a very exciting year. I do realise it's been more than three months since I last posted in this space - winter break was more packed than I'd expected - so much so that I took no notice that The Happy Candle blog actually turned one back last December. (This calls for a short belated celebratory applause!) Here's a jog down memory lane with it's first post

Sunday, 11 October 2015

The Spirit of Giving (Project Cereal Fundraising)

There is much happiness in giving. We often forget this in the process, but when we give, a certain sense of fulfillment takes its place within, and it helps us be grateful of what we have.

It's been a long time since this little space has had an update, and I truly apologise. University life is certainly overwhelming with assignments, projects and readings. Despite all the frenzied mess, this October, I do have some wonderful news to share, and I cannot be more excited about it because it's all for a good cause.

Next week, The Happy Candle will be selling its first ever line of products - brush lettered Bookmarks and Greeting Cards - as part of a fundraising event for an Overseas Community Service Project (OCSP) called Project Cereal. Here are some details about the project:

"Project Cereal is a pioneer student-initiated OSCP to Cambodia. The first of its kind, Project Cereal has tied up with Singapore Management University’s (SMU) Faculty of Social Sciences to launch a two-week project in Cambodia’s Kampong Speu. Project Cereal aims to advance social mobility through poverty alleviation missions. Its first mission primarily aims to equip Cambodian children with English as well as basic computing skills."

The fundraising will be held from 12 to 16 October at my very own university, SMU, and the bookmarks and cards can be purchased there at the SMU Basement, opposite of Pastamania. If you're an international reader, and you'd like to show your support, don't hesitate to like Project Cereal's page on Facebook or follow them on Instagram for updates. :)

Each Bookmark costs S$2, and three of them are sold at S$5. For the Greeting Cards, each costs S$3, and two are sold at S$5. The Bookmarks come with a ribbon, and the Greeting Cards are one-sided. Both of them are printed on 250gsm white paper and come in various designs, and among them includes my first digital illustration, so it'll definitely be fresh and interesting. :) 

A significant percentage of the proceeds from the fundraising will go to helping the children in Cambodia, Kampong Speu. I'd also like to thank one of my seniors, Alina (Ali), who helped out with some of the designs and gave helpful pointers for this entire launch, I honestly couldn't have completed this without her. :) 

A lot of time and effort has been put into to making this happen with The Happy Candle's new brand stickers, packaging and designs, to make sure that there'll be a fulfilling outcome from the project, the fundraising and the cause, so your support is greatly appreciated. 

Giving is living. Let's stay compassionate, and live with meaning. 

Until next time ♥ 


+ Do check out Project Cereal on Facebook and Instagram to find out more details about the project. :)

+ As with my last break from this space, I suppose it'd be courteous to inform readers about the future reduction in frequencies of posts as well. I'd just like to mention this concisely, just to ensure that readers are informed and (hopefully) look forward for future posts. 

I might not have the time to write, but if you'd like more updates from The Happy Candle, you may follow me on Instagram, where I'll post some additional lettering work and some behind the scenes that are not featured on the blog as well. :)