FYP – Topic Refining

Initial Topic of Interest: 

The changing landscapes of the more mundane residential neighbourhoods in Singapore.


To enable the younger generations of Singapore to learn more about the mundane neighbourhoods – as most of the spotlight tend to be shone on tourist attractions, cultural landmarks, heritage districts, and the bigger heartlands instead.

To develop awareness and appreciation towards mundane everyday details that are often overlooked in our daily lives – such as experiences, vernacular visuals, and as well as cultures in the areas that may have transitioned from the past to what it is today.

To preserve these memories and visuals in a more tangible form, before they too, fades along with time and the constantly changing landscapes of our nation.


Chosen Topic of Interest: 

Spatio-temporal Experiences and Place Attachments

1. Of, relating to, or existing in both space and time.
2. Of or relating to spacetime.

1. The act of attaching or the condition of being attached.
2. Something that attaches one thing to another.
3. An emotional bond, as of affection or loyalty; 
   fond regard.

Spatio-temporal experiences are experiences that occurred at a space during a certain span of time. Every activity generates a particular spatio-temporal structure which most individuals are often unaware of – as the ephemeral intimacies of direct experience and the true quality of a place are frequently taken for granted and are uncaptured as they were often too mundane.

These spaces/places eventually acquire value and meaning through the steady accretion of experience and sentiments over time, forming an emotional attachment between people and the places that are often subconscious. Place attachment is considered to be a fundamental human need, however, that the contemporary society is increasingly unable to satisfy due to its tendencies of rapid changes and gradual spatial uniformity, increased mobilities, and a spike in purely functionalistic relationships with places.

Routines and familiar places are rarely celebrated; as it would just be another day at the same place. Especially in a contemporary city like Singapore where change and progression are priorities and are reflected in culture and the changing landscapes. People tend to only realise the value of these mundane experiences and places only when routines and equilibriums are disrupted, or when these places are lost.

Why is it important? 

After undergoing decades of economic reforms and modernisation, many Singaporeans have became increasingly aware of the changes to Singapore’s physical and cultural landscape, which resulted in the loss of both tangible and intangible cultures. There have been an increase in voices on heritage preservation, as well as extensive media coverages and discussions on demolishment and redevelopments of places of cultural significances, and of significant mature estates and commercial places. Tours, articles, coverages and education on significant heritage locations, heartlands and trendy districts.

However, what of the more “insignificant” and mundane places that many of us refer to as home, or the places that people similarly would not realise of their emotional value until they are gone?

Life in routine is thoroughly familiar, and when things are familiar, they tend to be taken for granted. Security lies in routine – it is said to be a fundamental source of confidence. When routines are disrupted, or when initial pursuits and conformities no longer provide satisfaction or a sense of belonging, people loses their equilibrium and starts to question their sense of self.

According to studies, whenever a person – young or old, feels that the world is changing too rapidly or beyond their control, their characteristic response is to evoke the ideal and much stable past. People revisits the past for various reasons, but a commonality was the need to possess a sense of self and identity – however, the past often may no longer be visible, tangible, or accessible.

"The feeling we experience towards certain places 
 and to the communities that the places help to 
 define and that are themselves defined by 
 the places... and has a strong positive effect 
 in defining our identity, in filling our life
 with meaning, in enriching it with values, goals,
 and significance."

 Theory of Attachment and Place Attachment
 by Maria Vittoria Giulani

Author’s Motivations: 

Inspired by the personal experiences of having to move houses from one place to another, and how the author similarly have taken the warmth of many mundane experiences and places for granted, the author wanted to take this chance to create a personal retrospection to navigate her own experiences, and to explore about the sense of belonging.

Relocation and the sense of belonging are topics that are often explored or brought up by people who have migrated or are living in another country or state, where the distance between the locations are significant. What of those who have to relocate to another place within a small country like Singapore?


To create a personal retrospection through visual communication, about the author’s spatio-temporal experiences and attachments to the places that she have lived in, and to explore about the sense of belonging.

To encourage the younger generations of Singapore (milennials) to reflect about their past and not to take the subconscious spatio-temporal experiences for granted.

To develop awareness and appreciation towards mundane everyday life that are often overlooked in favour of the extraordinary.


Spatio-temporal Experiences
Place Attachment
Retrospective Reflection
Permanent Impermanence
Experiential Perspective
Subconscious Patterns
Sense of Identity
Concretion of Value
Concept of Place


Existing References: 

Kia kia | Penang Shophouses Walking Tour Kit by Eve Lyn Lau


Dear Future by Mun Yee Kwok


reuse eventually by ori studio


Discover Tanjong Pagar


Singapore Heritage Fest – Project Teahouse 2021



Books and Journals

Tuan, Y. (2018). Space and Place: The Perspective of Experience. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.

Bonnes, M. (2017). Psychological Theories for Environmental Issues.

Ikalović, V., & Chiesi, L. (2019). A Dynamic Sense of Home: Spatio-temporal Aspects of Mobility of Young Tokyo Residents. Urbani Izziv, 1(30), 101-113.

Articles and Media Coverages







Design Outcome 1 – Social Media Campaign

Design Outcome 1

I decided to come up with a social media campaign as my target audience are milennials aged 18 to 25 years old – which a majority of them uses social media frequently. Furthermore, as my topic covers about environmental issues, it would be contradictory if I were to do printed deliverables for distribution, such as brochures and flyers, which would generate even more emissions and waste.

Secondly, it was rather difficult to place deliverables at places where my target audience waste food – food places outside such as food courts, restaurants, cafes, etc. ( according to my survey, they rarely cook, and as they are students / working adults, they would probably have frequent meals in school / outside ), as businesses would usually want to encourage their patrons to order more through promotions and bundles, as there are no mandatory laws in Singapore which address and deter businesses from generating food waste.

Furthermore, as my objective was to raise awareness and to educate people about food waste and its environmental impacts, I felt that it would be more easily accessible on social media platforms which the target audience are using, rather than websites – there are a lot of environmental-organisation websites in Singapore that we don’t even know about ( e.g. cgs.com – in the Waste Less Save More campaign video which many of us know about as it appeared repeatedly on the television but we never did notice or visited the website ). Plus putting information on social media platform saves the hassle of downloading a new application which would just host educational informations / tips.

Foodlish to Waste

After a long contemplation about the name and logo, I decided to go with “Foodlish to Waste“, which was a shortened form for “foolish to waste food”, as the objective was to educate people that it is foolish to waste food, due to the wastage of resources and the endless list of environmental impacts.

Decided to reuse the same colour palette as the infographic poster, and I felt that the extensive usage of blueish-green rather than green, and an icon of a fork instead of a food / produce would prevent people from confusing it with vegetarianism.

Final Logo:

Colour Palette:


Design Outcome 1 – Social Media Campaign (Instagram Page & Sponsored Posts)



I was mainly inspired by Dain Walker’s page, where he uses big typographic texts with accompanying graphics. I felt that his posts were very straight-to-the-point and informative.


Instagram Page:



A page which would be updated regularly to raise awareness and to educate people about food waste. The posts on the page consist of summarised key stats / information to educate people, tips to reduce food waste, polls, and common misconceptions / myths about food waste.

Majority of the posts would consist of several slides which can be swiped ( carousel posts ), and a writeup as the captions to explain things further. Each post would be categorised by the different background colours taken from the same colour palette, and an indicator at the top right of the first slide of each post:

        1. Awareness / Informative posts would have the blue-green background
        2. Tips would have the golden-yellow background
        3. Common misconceptions in reddish-orange background

Some of these posts would appear as sponsored posts on the target audience’s feeds, explore pages, and stories as well:





Awareness / Informative Posts

These posts would be further categorised into common themes, e.g. a carousel post with numerous slides dedicated to wastage of land, while another is dedicated to the wastage of resources. Carousel posts would include further explanations and a call for action at the last two slides.


Awareness / Informative Post 1 – Wastage of Land



Awareness / Informative Post 2 – Wastage of Resources



Awareness / Informative Post 3 & 4 


Tips Posts



Common Misconception / Myths Posts




History of Design – Graphic Design So Far

Image result for philippe apeloig

Philippe Apeloig is a French graphic designer and typographer well-known for his expressive and experimental usage of typography, with inspirations his love of paintings, literature and the performing arts. In the 1980s, Philippe Apeloig had an internship with April Greiman in Los Angeles, who was one of the first few designers to embrace the usage of computers in design, and the experience encouraged him to embrace the emerging technologies in his designs.

Although posters are two-dimensional, elements and typography in his designs tends to look three-dimensional and conveys a sense of movement, interactions, and emotions.


Chicago. Naissance d’une Metropole, 1987.

One of his most well-known works, the 1987 Chicago, Naissance d’une Métropole poster, Philippe Apeloig used CAD softwares which was used exclusively for technical purposes, to distort his letterforms to create the illusion of three-dimensional space. The photograph of the city was taken at a dramatic angle, and the way he skewed his type enhanced the photo to create a sense of speed and vertigo.




Bateaux sur l’eau2003.

In many of his designs, he allows letters and typography to function as an autonomous image. One of the posters which I felt to be very interesting was the Bateaux sur l’eau poster for the French navigable waterways, where the letters were treated to represent boats, the solid blue background and the reflected letterforms suggested that it was water and reflections on the water. I like the subtlety and how utterly simple it was, yet the poster was able to convey the message rather clearly without the usage of other images / elements.


Poster featuring the text "VIVO IN TYPO" composed of red, black and white computer-generated punctuation marks. Additional text with details of exhibition printed in white at the right hand side.

Vivo In Typo, 2008.

Vivo in Typo was a poster to promote an exhibition of his own poster designs at Espace Topographie de l’art in Paris. He produced pages of computer-generated punctuation – such as periods, hyphens, and backslashes, and manipulated them into individual text forms. He varied the spacing between the punctuation, used a limited colour palette, and layered them in different scales to enable the several layers of the title “Vivo in Typo” to emerge as if they were woven together in a tapestry, and at the same time, I felt that they resembled like digital glitches as well.







Task 1B: Exploratory Research

In Task 1A, I decided to pick the issue about Climate Change as I felt that environmental issues have always resonated with me. However, I felt that the topic was too broad and I decided to narrow it down further to the causes of climate change. One of the causes which I found rather interesting was the vastly overlooked environmental issues of Food Waste.



Target Audience


Topic – Food waste, and the environmental impacts of food waste


Survey 1 – Climate Change in general

I did a short survey to find out more about what people think and are doing about climate change, and if the environmental impacts of food waste might be overlooked by Singaporeans, by not mentioning anything about food waste.


  • Almost all the respondents are concerned about global warming and climate change.
  • Most of the respondents listed plastics and fossil fuels as major contributors.
  • Deforestation, electricity, and transportation were mentioned by many too.
  • Only 2 mentioned about agriculture.
  • 1 person mentioned food waste.
  • All the respondents said they were willing to adopt more environmentally-friendly habits, and are currently practicing some.


Survey 2 – Food Waste

A few weeks later, I did another survey more specifically about food waste to find out more about my target audience’s understanding of food waste.

Target audience does not cook often / at all, and the 2 respondents who chose “a few times a week” were aged 41 and above.

The majority of the respondents felt that food waste was a problem in Singapore and many stated socio-economic issues, such as there are many others in poorer countries or families which are not able to afford food, and that we were wasting food which could have been given to those who needed them. 6 respondents stated terms such as “pollution”, “global warming” and “wastage of resources”.

Whereas another 6 respondents felt that food waste might or might not be a problem, as food waste can be decomposed unlike plastics, and could also be reused as fertilisers. A few also cited that there were initiatives where we could donate unwanted food before it spoils to prevent food waste.

After asking if the respondents thought of food waste as a problem in Singapore, I decided to gauge how big of a problem do they think it was and if they knew the exact figure.

Only 3 respondents selected the correct figure ( 760,000,000kg in 2018 ). Whereas the majority ( 23 respondents ), thought that food wastage in Singapore was smaller, with 14 respondents thinking it might even be more than 100x smaller.

The respondents’ top three reasons for food waste was base portion being too big, discounts for buying more, and food turning bad / expiring.

Only 3 thought food waste was incinerated, while the majority thought that our food waste were decomposed or recycled into fertilisers, or were unsure.

8 respondents stated environmental impacts, such as pollution, wastage of resources, and climate change.

Whereas the majority stated social / monetary impacts such as high demands from us means low supply for the people in the poorer countries. People would take food for granted because food is so accessible to us in Singapore. Or that wasting food is wasting money.


Insights from surveys + research

  • Most respondents does not cook – do not often buy perishable groceries
      • However many cited “food turning bad / expired” as their reason too – perhaps other perishables such as bread, confectioneries, fruits, dairies and other food such as homecooked / leftovers / takeaways.
      • Target Audience are either studying or working – majority of them would take meals outside.


  • Most respondents are concerned about the environment, and are willing to adopt or have already been practicing at least one or more environmentally-friendly habit(s) in their lifestyle.
      • Which mostly revolved around plastics.
      • Worldwide coverage / emphasis on the plastic problem.
      • Movements in Singapore – e.g. no straws at F&B, rise of reusable straws, needing to pay extra for takeaways / plastic bags / paper bags to reduce plastic usage.


  • Most respondents were tend to overlook / are unaware of the extent of the environmental impacts of food waste.
      • Food waste is a social, economic, environmental issue.
      • Respondents who cited environmental impacts and cited that resources used to produce the food, such as water, manpower, time, are wasted.
            • Tend to overlook that wastage includes other resources such as transportation, packaging, agricultural resources, land, etc.
            • As well as food waste which was occurred during upstream and midstream – not just downstream (  after it ends up in retail / with consumers )
            • Risks of contaminating other recyclables and hindering recycling efforts.
      • Tend to only think more about the environmental impacts when they are reminded about it.
            • e.g. when asked “what do we waste when we waste food?”
      • Most cited social / economic / monetary issues.
            • Tend to overlook environmental impact as they were not very aware / felt that those other issues were more important
                  • Even though they were rather interlinked
                        • Climate change affects the prices and supplies of food, and would further contribute to food security and food poverty.
            • Most of the previous campaigns about food waste in Singapore were focused on monetary impacts:
                  • Asked some respondents, they felt that the campaigns were more applicable to households.
                        • Waste less, Save More for a fun family outing
                        • Don’t cook often – not wasting money on unused groceries
                  • From my survey, food waste was largely due to portion issues.
                        • Asking for lesser portion does not mean that it would be cheaper.
                        • “More food better than not enough food” thinking

Credits: National Environment Agency


  • Lack of knowledge about food waste in Singapore.
      • Underestimated the amount of food waste that we generate and dispose.
            • And food waste in Singapore have been increasing by approximately 40% over the last decade.
      • Very aware of the plastic problem but unaware of food waste which was the second most disposed-of waste after plastics in 2018.
      • Most respondents are unaware of what happens to our food waste after it enters the bin.
      • A large number believed that food waste would be recycled / decomposed / turned into fertilisers.
            • When food rots, it produced methane, a greenhouse gas which is 30x more potent than carbon dioxide.
            • Only 17% of our food were recycled.
            • Anaerobic Digesters – converting methane from decomposition into electricity at processing plants are still under research & testing.
            • However, despite the development of food waste recycling technologies, it is still “best to not waste food in the first place”.
  • Most respondents did not know that food waste were incinerated.
        • Considered a good way to dispose food waste.
              • To prevent them from producing methane and reduce the space needed for landfill disposal
              • Able to produce biogas to produce electricity
              • However, food should not be wasted in the first place due the large amount of resources used to produce them.