Elaine Dolalas (ObliviousNerdGirl.com), a Los Angeles-based writer, podcaster and community organizer, began the Color Your Troubles Away (CYTA) arts event back in 2015. Since then she has organized multiple CYTA events, most of which have taken place at The Park’s Finest, a Los Angeles restaurant that offers BBQ with a Filipino twist.
Guests were invited to choose their own coloring sheets from a unique selection that included Filipino-themed sheets, Star Wars sheets and even a sheet with swear words, just to name a few.
Dolalas, who also started a podcast that focuses on the experiences of Filipinos in the United States called This Filipino American Life (TFAL), provided the Filipino-themed coloring sheets that included images recognizable to many Filipino-Americans. Some of these images included canned corned beef and the popular snack from the Philippines, dried mangos.
Ivan Ortuoste, a senior at California State University, Long Beach and one of FilAm ARTS’ interns, had a sense nostalgia when he first saw the corned beef coloring sheets.
“Seeing corned beef brought me back to my childhood when I looked forward to seeing it in balikbayan boxes,” he shared. “It’s not every day you see images of your favorite Filipino-related foods in the form of a coloring sheet.”
A coloring sheet of the 2017 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival’s key art was also provided by Visual Communications, a non-profit organization dedicated to ensuring accurate portrayals of Asian Pacific Americans and their culture through media arts.
As more people began to arrive, the smell of BBQ and sounds of scattered conversations filled the restaurant. Who would have ever thought that eating BBQ while coloring would be the ultimate stress reliever?
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Stay tuned for more community events taking place in the area!