Filipino seafarer makes art through food

Check out the edible artworks by Jaypee Magno

Being creative is natural to many Filipinos. You can find artists not only in galleries and exhibitions but also in unlikely places such as the busy streets in Manila and, now, on high seas. What’s more special about these humble artists is how they demonstrate resourcefulness by using scraps to make art. But for one seafaring Filipino, his art goes beyond sketchpads and canvas as he uses food for his masterpieces.

Jaypee Magno

Meet Jaypee Magno, a 22-year-old from Iloilo who shares his edible artworks online. Life in the sea can be lonesome for a young Filipino being away from his family. So to make the most of his free time on board, the seafarer channels his creative side and makes food art pieces that are truly remarkable.

“My source of inspiration is my dream and family,” Jaypee tells Manila Bulletin Lifestyle. “I’ve always wanted to be featured and known as an artist with a unique kind of art style to share with everyone, and also for my family to be proud of what I have become.”

Drawing and illustrating have been a big part of Jaypee’s childhood. His artistic journey started during his early days in school, winning “Best in Drawing” in his kindergarten days. This continued to his primary, secondary, and tertiary academic life as he became his school’s representative in art competitions. While life has stirred him to a different path, he continues to create artworks and explores more of what he can do.

From sketching classic films and movie stars on paper, he went wild with his imagination by recreating famous images with the equipment in his marine vessel and paying homage to incredible Filipinos and international music artists through snacks, condiments, and other consumable things. Among his notable food arts is a ketchup sketch of Miss Grand International 2020 first runner-up Samantha Bernardo, Olympic champions Hidilyn Diaz and Carlo Paalam with chocolate spread, and, his latest, a Pink Oreo creation featuring Vice President Leni Robredo.

“It took me one hour to finish,” he says about his Pink Oreo art. “This VP Leni Food Art shows my support for her as a candidate for the presidency.”

Apart from Oreo cookies and chocolate spread, he also uses sliced cheese for his food art. And instead of paintbrushes, his tools for his artworks include toothpicks, sewing needles, and bread.

Hidilyn Diaz chocolate spread art

“For me, it’s harder to make food art than traditional art because you can’t make an initial sketch on Oreo cookies or sliced bread, not like on the traditional art that uses paper or board as a canvas,” Jaypee muses.

If you’re wondering what happens to his food art after taking few snaps for social media, well, he eats, of course. But for the pieces he works hard for, he admits that it is hard to consume them.

Check more of his works at @jpmgno on Instagram.