A Snippet of Who We Are
Around 12 noon in Poblacion’s bustling hive of cosmopolites and city slickers, Allen peeped through the front window, almost furtively, of the closed PURVEYR shop. He travelled from Pasig to Makati, only to end up buying a bottle of water in 7-Eleven. Disappointed, he bore down the bare interiors of the street corners to look for a place to have lunch. While passing the short stretch where he dropped off, he noticed that the lights inside the PURVEYR shop were much more prominent. Then he decided to go back.
At the second floor of a small apartment, Allen opened the dark glass door printed with a small ‘PURVEYR POST.’ Inside the compact studio is a mix of an art gallery and a pop-up retail store for local brands. It speaks like a modern art— informal, direct, and no-nonsense. The brands are like a young Filipino connoisseur, passionate about culture, art, and lifestyle. On the matte black table was a PURVEYR magazine, which now lies somewhere in Allen’s bookshelf. The cover is Xyza Bacani, an international street and documentary photographer who grew up in Bambang, Nueva Vizcaya. That moment left a lasting impression on him, “Why don’t we start something like this?”
It may seem tempting to dismiss the vision of Allen, who is now Novice’s Creative and Managing Director, as nothing more as a hubris of youth. But there are many people with immense passion and dedication who shared the same breadth of view.
In 2015, Francis Gum came up with the idea of creating a magazine for Nueva Vizcaya. An international portrait and fashion photographer based in Los Angeles, California, Francis’ incessant love to go back to his roots have trailblazed to two major art and photography exhibits in his hometown, Bayombong. His concept of putting up the magazine lacked support at that time, but it set out the blueprint that Novice has come to be.
When the reunion of The Marian, a student publication in Nueva Vizcaya, was cancelled last December 2018, there are projects that have been proposed instead. Part of the plan is to provide journalism lectures to different schools and to start a literary folio.
In March 2019, Bench/ released their special summer issue, a 56-page magazine that features local travel destinations and the brand. This is the intimation, the starting point of “Eto na! Let’s do this!” The Scout magazine’s promise of providing fun, engaging content with experimental and memorable visuals has been a eureka moment as well, a lightbulb of our inner creative lusus naturae. It marked a shift on our idea of starting a literary folio to become more ambitious and create an all-encompassing platform.
In this sense, the story of Novice is not different from other magazines. It’s a culmination of the unique perspectives and ideas of young creatives, inspired by the locals, the emerging trends, the evolving culture, and the things we love.
An on-and-off concept, which almost ended up as drawing, the inspiration of our name is rooted on our heritage. We really wanted something connected to Nueva Vizcaya that sounds young and cool, like Gateway or the most obvious one, NuViz. From there, we stumbled across Novice. A word that is both honest and telling, the name faithfully represents our brand.
In the first week of April, we started to build the team. It’s not the usual editorial team. While we have habitués of print and digital media and editors of local and international papers, we have people whose writing stints were years ago. There is a data science professional, a U.S. medical practitioner, an educator at an early learning center in Australia, accountant in Canada, and from different walks of life who intellectually are a kindred spirit; there is a room for youthful rebellion.
We invite you in our energetic pursuit of distinctive, if unconventional, perspectives and stories. We are Novice— passionate, wanderer, and free-spirited.