A series of cartoons about finding a mischievous lemon colored Beagle named Bon Marco has become a hit among social media followers of a Negrense retired college professor during the COVID-19 pandemic.
It has also helped raise funds to buy meals for undernourished children and typhoon victims.
The “Finding Bon Marco” series by Bugsy Lopez Bongco, 63, who taught accounting and auditing at Colegio San Agustin-Bacolod and the University of St La Salle in Bacolod City, are posted on Facebook and Instagram twice a week.
The cartoon series used to be on her personal Facebook account, but as followers grew Bongco recently decided to start posting the Finding Bon Marco game on the FB page called The Legal Beagles.
Bongco retired in 2016 after 30 years of teaching and started to teach herself how to draw her dogs and later to watercolor them.
“Many of those who have been playing the #FindingBonMarco series have said they enjoy doing it because it keeps their minds away from COVID and all the politics”, said Bongco, who is also a lawyer.
“One has to look for Bon Marco, my lemon Beagle, and The Human, me (in the cartoon). Sometimes, it’s only Bon Marco but I also put my other Beagles and two aspin rescues as decoys,” she said.
In Bongco’s cartoon scenes, she hides Bon Marco in the midst of plants, which is what he does in real life, or in between the characters she draws.
The catch is it’s hard to find Bon Marco. Sometimes Bongco only shows his face, snout, ear, or the other half of his body with his tail.
The answers are disclosed after two to three days or just before the next Finding Bon Marco piece comes out.
The #FindingBonMarco series started by accident. “I drew the San Sebastian Cathedral (in Bacolod) and made a mistake so I tried to hide that mistake by drawing Bon Marco over the error. Then I asked a friend to look for him,” she said.
She said she was surprised that people enjoyed looking for Bon Marco.
”Later, I added myself so one has to look for Bon Marco and The Human, ala Larry Alcala. It was only later that I remembered I also enjoyed looking for Larry Alcala so I continued to make it,” Bongco added.
Then somebody offered to buy one of her cartoons.
The original cartoon pieces were not intended to be sold but when the offer came up and several others followed, Bongco said she decided it was a good way to raise funds to buy meals.
“Finding Bon Marco” cartoon pieces are being “bartered” for donations for Negrense Volunteers for Change meal bags and now, for the Bicol typhoon relief operations of NVC, she said.
To join the fun and find the lemon Beagle, one can go to The Legal Beagles page or try the hashtag, #FindingBonMarco.*