what people say
“[Valencia] was an invaluable resource who unsparingly delivered process improvements that will help [our] non-profit in the years to come. We greatly believe in Valencia's desire and capacity to create excellence in her projects. It was a pleasure to work with this smart, bright, and caring young woman."
Donnetta Johnson, September 2020
President of Hillsborough Music Festival
“Telling someone she is a good person to disagree with does not sound like a compliment at first, but I learned so much from Valencia about myself, mainly because of her at times brutal honesty, that I can say meeting her definitively changed me, my actions, and my perception of many things."
Stefan Wiebe, April 2017
Couchsurfing Friend and Travel Buddy, London
"...working with Valencia has always been a pleasure due to her strong working ethics and the energy and professionalism she brings to the rehearsal room and stage."
Robert Jenkin, November 2015
Managing Director of Wildfire Entertainment, Singapore
"[Valencia] drew an ambigram that I had been unable to recreate online (and we never talked about it). It's one of the coolest drawings I've been given and she left a sweet note."
Tony Garcia, July 2015
Couchsurfing Host, Portland
"During [Valencia's] internship, she has exhibited strong leadership when a task was given to her...her resilience and determination to accomplish a task is remarkable."
Grace Wong, November 2015
Lead Costume Designer at Awesome Costumes, Singapore
"Valencia is really special, not at all your ordinary couchsurfer, never mind average person...she will turn on a few lamps in your head.
Guglielmo Parasporo, March 2019
Couchsurfing Friend, Sicily
"Valencia was an incredible workawayer who prepared wonderful illustrations for the animation we have been working on, plus she also shared with all of us her laughter, smiles, insights and sharp mind."
Marc Torra, May 2016
Workaway Host, Australia
"...[Valencia] can talk about the most mundane topic one second and then suddenly make you question your value and belief systems the next which I found extremely refreshing! ...thank you for reminding me that though some encounters may be ephemeral, they don't have to be empty."
Talisa London, March 2017
Couchsurfing Friend, London
"Valencia was an amazing guest, and provided a more special experience than nearly all of the 100s of people we hosted. She has an amazing spirit and connection to the world around her."
Sam Williams, January 2020
Couchsurfing Host, San Francisco
When I was 12, I contemplated on what I wanted to be when I grew up. I did very well academically, but never felt drawn to academic professions such as law, business, or medicine. I drew a lot as a child and was quite good at it, so I thought I should do something that involved drawing. My friends suggested that I become a comic artist, since back then my drawings were heavily influenced by Japanese anime, but I got bored easily and didn't enjoy drawing the same character over and over again. Thus the idea was born that I would be a fashion design; the idea of designing new characters / outfits appealed greatly to my young self.
So when the time came to enrol in university, I chose to major in Fashion Design and Textiles. Only to become completely horrified and disenchanted by the fashion industry, and wanting nothing to do with it whatsoever, even if I enjoyed designing and creating wearable art.
Thus I left university just 1 year away from obtaining my degree, figuring it would be a waste of my time, money, and energy to spend another year in school for the sake of a piece of paper that I was unlikely to use anyway. The next 7 years was marked by uncertainty and aimlessness, not knowing what I wanted to do with my life now that my childhood plans crumbled to dust, but also plenty of travel, exploration, and eventually a stronger sense of self, a recognition of the true creative spirit within myself, and a conviction to blaze my own unique path, trusting the process without ascertaining the destination.
Nonetheless, my 2 years in university was not at all wasted, as it produced the body of work you can see below, some of which I have begun to wear publicly since 2019. Although I technically majored in Fashion Textiles (which focused on surface design techniques and manipulations, such as printing, embroidery, etc) instead of Fashion Design (which focused on pattern drafting and garment construction),