Project 3: First Part – Amen, lol

F I N A L   I M A G E S


C O N C E P T   /   A R T I S T   S T A T E M E N T ( I S H )

Amen, lol is a photographic series birthed through me questioning my relationship with my religion. Through the creation of the pictures, I set out to explore what my Catholic faith is to me through the use of and/or reinterpretation of symbols and imagery from Catholicism/Christianity.



^Shot on Canon EOS 7D Mark II, aperture f/3.2, shutter speed 1/100, ISO 800, focal length 59 mm


^Shot on Canon EOS 7D Mark II, aperture f/5.6, shutter speed 1/60, ISO 1600, focal length 42 mm

^Shot on Canon EOS 7D Mark II, aperture f/7.1, shutter speed 1/20, ISO 1250, focal length 55 mm


I D E A T I O N   &   E X E C U T I O N

(Here comes the long part cos I just love to talk sometimes lmao so read if u wanna this is all super extra info and for personal reference)

Through the many weeks in class, we have been exposed to many inspiring artists and photographers. The ideation for this project started when Bryan asked us to borrow a book on a photographer’s specific works from the library. I didn’t have specific photographers in mind, and spent some time just browsing. I ended up with Christopher Anderson‘s SON, Nikki S. Lee‘s Projects, and Pierre et Gilles‘ Pierre et Gilles: Double Je, 1976-2007. I was inspired by Anderson’s use of light, Lee’s characters, and Pierre et Gilles’ style and elaborate mise en scene.


In terms of concept, I was deliberating on exploring family relationships, music, or the Jakartan food/visual culture, as I tend to lean towards more personal topics. However, I wasn’t so sure, and neither did I feel too inclined towards any. It was only when I thought about religion that I felt I could come up with something meaningful, and have fun in the process.

As someone who is in the midst of soul searching, there was a great fear in me to face this topic as it would mean that I would need to confront my original faith and my doubts about it. 

Watch the video above to get a glimpse behind Pierre et (and) Gilles’ workflow (and their dazzling abode)!! It’s really cool to see their extensive preparation documented in a video. From sketching and planning to props-buying; taking test shots; Pierre shooting; printing on a large canvas; applying varnish; Gilles using paint to deepen colours, add highlights and glitter; and finally adding and decorating the frame, which they regard as an extension of the canvas and serves to complete the piece!! So extra, so gaudy but so good??!!!

Ok so I was inspired to use Catholic symbols along with other funky materials. I thought that I could explore using man-made or flimsy, temporary (transient?) materials like plastic, foil, aluminium and paper to represent me making light of this ‘situation’, or how silly religion feels to the logical me, who recently realised that I had been believing in the religion blindly my whole life.

But r e a l l y, at the same time, I’m questioning the authenticity of my faith – when I had it. I said I believed, and I genuinely meant it, but looking back I didn’t understand shit about Jesus, Catholicism, religion, or life even!?!? So, what was it that I believed in???

After some sketching and brainstorming I chose 3 ideas to try to pull off.

Here’s the story behind the pictures:


One of the first images that came to mind. There’s something about close-ups of body parts that is equally creepy, disgusting, yet intimate and emotional at the same time. The image of the cross against the tongue/mouth (it tasted ew), to me, primarily symbolises the act of consuming the religion. It also parallels the act of receiving the body of Christ, as you would at the end of a Catholic mass where the congregation would line up to accept communion. A piece of unleavened bread similar to a wafer (not that I know cos I’m not allowed to take it yet), called the host (also called hostia, sacramental bread, communion wafers??? lol), symbolises the body of Christ. You take it as part of a sacrament called the Eucharist.


“Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink his blood, you have no life in you; he who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is real food, and my blood is real drink. He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him. As the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father, so he who eats me will live because of me. This is the bread which came down from heaven, not such as the fathers ate and died; he who eats this bread will live forever” (John 6:53–58)

Immortal bread? Dang. Not immortal in the physical sense though – mind you. Honestly I am finding out so much about the host and the communion by trying to write this and realising I don’t know jack shit and researching and realising that I was only participating cos apparently that’s just what you do in church.

The image is altered such that it looks almost perfect, shining – exactly how spotless and easy I hope believing in a religion was to me.


Pretty simple. The main items are the Bible and the candles. The Bible represents my faith and the candles represent my devotion. Candles are widely used in my experience as a Catholic. In my family, we would light candles up in prayer. Often we would say our names when setting the candle up. It symbolises our presence.

At the same time, candles can also represent the passing of time, and them melting into a messy puddle shows negligence – in an almost poetic manner.

Together, through this image, I tried to illustrate my investment in devotion and prayer without paying attention to understanding the religion itself. The Bible is untouched, unread, its pages sealed by the wax dripping over, ironically because I was spending so much time praying, to a God I claimed to know.

Main idea first came when I was watching this music video by Cuco.

Screenshot from Cuco’s “Keeping Tabs (ft. Suscat0)” music video directed by Cirqua

A pretty simple representation of the devil – but somehow I was really interested in the use of body paint after seeing this. I wanted to use body paint!!! I was thinking of using other colours – but there were too many other connotations / possible misinterpretation. Blue – Smurfs, Krishna; Yellow – yellowface; Black – blackface; Green – Hulk, etc. Hence, I stuck to red – it’s a strong, impactful colour, and can have many interpretations.

After reading up on flower language in Catholicism, I settled on using the most basic, significant flower – the white Lily. It symbolises “Mary’s Immaculate Purity”. I went to the flower market with the intention of getting fresh lilies and baby’s breath, or other pretty flowers. However, after seeing the plastic lilies vs the fresh lilies, it struck me how so much prettier and convenient the plastic ones are. I thought it was apt to represent my faith – how fake it is.

Actual devotion would be like handling actual flowers – you need to take care of them, trim the leaves, put them in water, add flower food, wait for them to bloom, and even then you wouldn’t know whether it would bloom nicely. Not two flowers are the same. Yet, with the plastic ones, they look great, are permanent, and need no upkeep.

At the same time, the red hand represents my vices, my other side, or my true self. I tried a few different hand positions, but I felt that the simplest one spoke the most and its ambiguity leaves room for interpretation. I thought the middle finger was funny, but this position where the hand seems to be just reaching in, relaxed, maybe about to touch the flower, I thought was so soft yet the colours make it striking. You can’t decide whether the hand is invading the space, about to taint the apparent purity of the flowers, or does the hand actually coexist with the lilies?

It’s challenging to confront the reality of why I’m on the edge of my faith… and the results often make me, and maybe some viewers, uncomfortable, but I think it’s a good reaction.

Overall, I’m having a lot of fun.. and also learning about my religion. HAHA looking forward to completing the rest of the photo series. Also watching American Horror Story (“watching it for class”) and I’m loving it!



Project 2: Landscape – Peach Apocalypse

F I N A L   I MA G E


This photo was taken in Serpong, just South of Jakarta. Inspired by the colours of a Jakartan dusk, I tried to recreate the pink wash using the context of a cityscape. The sky casts a lazy morning glow, bringing warmth to the otherwise blue existence of the concrete city.


Shot on Canon EOS 7D Mark II, aperture f/5, shutter speed 1/400s, ISO 100, focal length 24 mm

  1. Cleaning – Cleaned out minor details like a lamp post and a tree.
  2. Red Channel Mask (Highlights and Shadows) – Brought the contrast up to make the clouds more visible.
  3. Colour Balance – Make the photograph cooler.
  4. Selective Colour Filter – Make certain colours stand out more.
  5. Solid Colours – Tinted the photo with the main colours of blue and pink.
  6. Building – Coloured the two stray buildings blue to blend in with the rest of the foreground and buildings.
  7. Gradient Mask and Solid Colour – Added colours using gradient as it creates a more interesting composition, and mimics a film burn.
  8. Noise – Added non-monochromatic grain for a more film feel.

Click here for the Photoshop .psd file

Study of Spaces – Physical

T H E   L I O N   K I N G

The Lion King musical opened on Broadway in November 1997. Based on the 1994 Walt Disney Animation Studios’ animated feature film of the same name, it is one of the biggest, longest-running musical productions in the world.

I went to watch The Lion King musical last August, and it was my first actual musical experience, which I had been looking forward to since forever. And I can say, every single cent was worth it. Sure, I knew the story and the songs well, but the musical brought this beloved animation to life in such a way that I never imagined would be so enchanting.

The elaborate sets, the props, the costumes, the stage design, they all culminate in an entertaining and memorable show. At almost every moment, I loved how they translated the moments on screen to a spectacle on stage.

Click here to experience a 360 degree view of its opening scene.


A musical is a stage, a performance. I feel that it employs many different mediums to deliver a story, a show. The medium is not only the acting and the music, there is also the stage design – everything from sets, props, costume, makeup, etc, and the external marketing and publicity plans.

The audience, while they are only seated in the comfy chairs, are perceptually engaged in numerous ways, mainly through sight and hearing. In Lion King, most of the audience would know of the story from the original animation. The directors of the show then has this challenge to present the story in a completely different way through song and dance. With the advancement of technology, sets are brought alive on stage through movement and lights.


I feel that architecturally, this production was very rich, and it did not disappoint. They were designed in a way that would support the story, but also created a visual masterpiece. There was a good balance between elaborate and simple, and even the simple sets were as effective.

The costumes and puppetry were also the highlight of the show. It is one thing to bring a theatre to live, but it is another thing to bring an animal kingdom to live on stage with human actors.

I loved how they did not restrict themselves to simply replicate real life, but they did it in a style that was both pleasing and culturally expressive.

Overall, every single detail contributed to enhance the space by tenfolds, creating an out-of-the-world experience for the viewers, who feel like they were transported to another realm, another dimension.


The Lion King was written based on the Pride Lands of Africa. The musical showcases the African culture through the artistic department. The Swahili language is also featured, with accurate representation in the actors themselves.

The colours leaned towards a majority of warmer tones, which invokes a sense of warmth in the audience, and this also relates to the sun, and the overall atmosphere of the African setting. Other than that, there are also vibrant colours that enliven the scenes. Overall, the colours used in each dance piece, each scene, were carefully coordinated to create different moods which matched the settings of the different scenes.


Other than the show being really big in terms of scale, with almost life size costumes, tall giraffes, large elephants, there are a few other features of the musical that helped to create an immersive experience for its viewers.

Breaking the fourth wall – the performance was not limited to the stage. In multiple parts throughout the show, performers zoomed through the aisles, or danced amongst the audience. This brings the audience themselves closer into the heart of the performance, and experience the dancers and costumes in closer proximity. The whole theatre becomes the stage.

The actors also interacted with the audience and addressed them, engaging them and making them feel like a part of the performance, which makes it feel less of watching a screen, a framed stage. There were also jokes that were specific to Singapore, which I felt was entertaining as the Singaporean population that watched it felt a deeper connection – it was also something funny and memorable.

Study of Spaces – Screen Based

G E O R G E S   M É L I È S   –   L E   V O Y A G E   D A N S   L A   L U N E 

I can’t recall when I first encountered Georges Méliès, but I was reintroduced to him and his works through the movie Hugo, which was directed by Martin Scorsese. I’m not entirely sure how accurate the information presented on Méliès was on the movie, but it did give quite a bit of insight of how Méliès was said to work. I felt that the reproductions of his sets and some behind the scenes of his films gave an apt visual to the documentation of his processes.

One of the forefronts for science fiction, Méliès started off as a magician, an illusionist. When he encountered the Lumiere Brothers’ film, which at that time showed only scenes of real life with motion, Méliès immediately saw its potential to experiment further.  I feel that he brought over his interests from creating illusions in real life, to creating illusions on screen. This was novel at the time, and pushed the boundaries of filmmaking.

P E R C E P T U A L 

A lot of Georges Méliès’s films are fantastical, they are fictional dreams brought into reality, with early VFX that brought what was once impossible into vision. He was already doing this in his performances as a magician, and his mind as an inventor helped him demonstrate his illusions, however the camera and film helped him bring his work to another level. He was able to have more control over the final piece, without the limitations of a live performance.

He cut the films and pasted them back together, pioneering film trickery, or effects as now known, he had crew to paint over each and every frame, he built a whole glass enclosed studio, he housed over 20 000 costumes, he was over the top and it was awesome.

Bringing his stories across, the viewers are able to enjoy the effects created, and their emotional states are invested since they are introduced to a new form of entertainment.

The films were not made with the point of replicating reality, so there is a fun element to it, with the expressions and body gestures of the actors amplifying the scenes with their interactions with the sets and props.

This is especially more so because the movies were silent, with no dialogue. Hence, the narrative had to be delivered through visuals and music alone.


In his glass studio, he created elaborate sets that are many times almost dream-like. These are very similar to stage design. It is as if they were for stage performances and theatre, but recorded instead. These were what early sound stages were like. This way, he was able to explore the mise-en-scène and cinematography of his works.

In such a limited space, Méliès was able to create a sense of depth and volume by playing with planes and scale. By using elevated, depressed and overhead planes, he was able to redefine the space according to the kinds of settings he was going for. This creates a believable space in which the viewers could imagine the three dimensionality and the extension of the space beyond the frame.

C U L T U R A L 

At the time, films were only starting to get popular after its invention. Even though the Lumière brothers stated that the cinema was an invention with no future, they were proved wrong as it has now developed into one of the most prominent mediums of expression in history, with advancements continuously being made and boundaries continuously broken and redefined.

I found this a good short read on the early start of cinema, and what the culture was like, defined by different takes by different artists, inventors and filmmakers.

In Le Voyage Dans La Lune, the culture of theatre and fantasies was showcased through the idea of heading towards the moon and finding extra terrestrial creatures.


While films do not create an immersive physical space for the viewers, I think that when done right, it could create an immersive mental space, when viewers are engaged in the film and can feel themselves in it. I think that Georges Méliès was able to do this in this film, as he made people and sets and movements that were understandable and relatable.

I also feel that the sense of wonder also creates another effect that engages the audience’s imagination, just like how one could be engaged through the words in a book.

MUJI x Strength x Electrical Plug Campaign

MUJI CAMPAIGN – Idea of recharging x strength

by Lim Ling Ern and Clarita Saslim


MUJI’s core principles and founding philosophy is based on traditional Japanese values of simplicity and self-restraint, revolting against the influx of the branded imported goods that flooded 1980s Japan.

MUJI isn’t flashy in its green efforts. Unlike brands that show-off their green activism and are surface-level, MUJI focuses on actually making sure its operations are good for the environment, living up to the company’s integrity.

For years now, MUJI has launched programs that subtly remind its consumers about their impact on the environment. This ignites an introspective response.

For example, they sold canned salmon made from the less desirable parts of the fish and U-shaped spaghetti, a by-product of producing straight cut spaghetti.

The ReMUJI program also encourages consumers to think about the waste they are producing. There is a Japanese saying, “Mottai-nai“, which reminds us to not let anything go to waste.


1. Promoting the idea of gaining strength from using MUJI Products. 

MUJI offers a wide range of products and these products provide strength to customers in different ways. We highlight this through posters or videos.

2. Promoting the idea of how Earth has given us life and taken care of us. 

In line with MUJI’s efforts, the second stage of this campaign involves a larger-than-life electrical plug and socket – with no apparent explanation.

The socket would be located in MUJI stores.

We were thinking that maybe an actor in an Earth costume with a plug would walk around in public spaces.

However, this is too flamboyant and we are thinking of doing a sculpture/installation instead. A giant, simple but weathered globe with a giant plug appears in public spaces near MUJI stores out of nowhere.

The globe can be transported, and when plugged in to the socket in the MUJI store, the globe could light up and create a beautiful spectacle.

This promotes the idea of lending strength back to Earth through mindful consumerism. Generic goods can be good for the environment and its people, and through this metaphor of recharging, we’d like to show that as MUJI’s products lend strength to its consumers, it is also lending strength to Earth by being kinder to the environment, and they are also encouraging its consumers to lend strength back to Earth by being more mindful.

3. Electronic waste drive

This part is a more novel, extra idea, but in line with the iconography of the electrical plug, we could also have a drive ongoing, where people can drop off their faulty or used electrical plugs and receive a discount for MUJI electrical plugs or power cables (which are supposedly made responsibly).

Electronic waste makes up a huge part of our trash and by collecting and displaying the electrical plugs in a large acrylic tank, hopefully it would remind or raise the awareness in consumers to rethink their electronics usage or at least dispose of electronic waste responsibly.

There could be displays to educate the consumers on how to dispose of electronic waste responsibly and some facts on electronic products and waste.

Lastly, this ties back to the company’s ideal of producing as little waste as possible and being good to the environment and its people.


Week 7: Thermochromic Ink

Thermochromic Ink!

The term thermochromic comes from the Greek word “thermos”, meaning heat and “chroma”, meaning colour. Something that is thermochromic changes colour as the temperature changes. In fabrics, a special dye acts as the thermochromic agent.

Thermochromic dye can be used in different ways. You can make images disappear, or you could make designs change colour by layering thermochromic dye on top of normal dye.

R  E  F  L  E  C  T  I  O  N

Again, this is another technique whose existence I knew of already, but whose workings I have never really understood! I’m really glad that not am I only exposed to so many new ways of manipulating materials, but that I also get to try them out!

Thermochromic ink can be used on many different products and materials, and I think that it lends a little magic to the world! I remember the first time I saw a mug that changes colour with hot liquid poured in. I wasn’t surprised, given the technological advances of our time, but I was pretty amazed. Another friend of mine has a phone case that changes colour with just your body temperature. You could then “draw” on the case or make prints with your fingers, that disappear in just seconds.

In the experimentation, I tried printing the two colours together on one sheet creating a design, almost like the mountains / seas / volcanoes / sky. The printed design is still kind of visible after heating it. I’m not sure why, maybe because of the material?

I think trying to just paint directly on the material or canceling more areas to create negative space that is not covered in the thermochromic ink would be interesting to try out in the future.

Week 5: Smocking, Elastics

This week we learnt a really cool technique, smocking!

What is smocking? 

Smocking is an embroidery technique that is used to gather fabric. Usually, this is done so that the fabric can stretch. As you can see in the picture of the little girl below, this technique is used widely in making dresses.

However, this technique also allows fabric to be gathered in a really cool way to create patterns. This form of fabric manipulation may be tedious, but the results are super rewarding!


R  E  F  L  E  C  T  I  O  N

I’ve seen textures made by smocking before, but didn’t know that they were produced by sewing the fabric to create folds.

After a little bit of googling and trying it out, I grasped the basic idea of how to do this technique. Soon, I was engulfed in finishing my pattern. It is really satisfying to watch the fabric slowly form into something mesmerising.

I experimented with using a leather-like material, and what I discovered is that the thickness of the material resulted in a sturdy form. I imagine that this would be useful in making shapes in garments or artworks. It makes me wonder what it would be like to do smocking on a flimsier material!

Week 6: Knitting



  1. Knitting needles (or chopsticks haha)
  2. Yarn (or other materials)
  3. Time


With the yarn that I had, I tried knitting with different thickness. I also tried crocheting again. In the past I did crocheting for my A levels, and made balls that are stuffed. I recreated that to the best of my memories.

I would like to explore more materials, as you can virtually knit or crochet any string like material, be it plastic, fabric or whatever. As long as you have it in strips and it is malleable enough, you can knit with it and I think the results would be interesting!




Compared to knitting, I think that crochet is relatively more forgiving and unbounded. You can make virtually anything. You just have to figure out how the structure works in your brain. Other than the usual scarves, hats and mittens, knitting and crochet can be used to create unusual textures for fashion, for example.


It was fun getting to know how to knit, since I was previously only familiar with crochet. It is very therapeutic and addictive, and I find it hard to stop knitting once I start. I do it everywhere, as I eat, as I walk, as I do other things. I usually can’t multitask, but with knitting my hand moves automatically, so my brain can focus on other things. How fascinating!


Week 4: Felting



Really simple! Some wool felt and needles!



There are a few types of felting. In this class we learnt wet felting, dry felting and nuno felting.

Typically the steps are as follows:

Wet Felting

  1. Wet the felt with some water and soap.
  2. Use the needles to form into desired shape.
  3. Let dry.

Dry Felting

  1. Pull apart the felt fibres.
  2. Use the needles to form into desired shape.

Nuno Felting

Nuno Felting is the technique in which other materials are merged together with felt. For example, silks or tulle. Any other materials that can entangle themselves with felt will also work.



I experimented with wet and dry felting. I tried creating a large sheet of even felt, like the ones we usually get in stores. After that, then I tried felting in a design. I realised that it is harder to felt a design in since the sheet of felt has already merged on its own.

With dry felting, I tried to make some balls. This inspired me to create an eyeball, which result I really enjoyed. I think the quality of the felt was really good to represent the red veins on the eyeball.



Felting is a tedious process, but rewarding in the end. I learnt to be patient through the repeated poking and the stabs from the sharp needle.

Mad respect for those who do felting seriously! The results are awesome, and you can make so many things with this material. Soft or hard, flimsy or rigid. IT all depends on what you want to make, and the limit is your creativity!


Night to Light Festival: Art Skins and Monuments

I haven’t seen much from the Night to Light Festival other than the projection mapped works and the two works outside of ACM (which I originally thought was part of iLight), but I feel that the festival is a getting a little overshadowed as it is held simultaneously with iLight, which is relatively more established and well-known. On top of that, their locations intersect, and they both involve works using light and darkness. It is only expected that a layman is less likely to notice the difference between works participating in iLight or Night to Light.

Nevertheless, it was as exciting, because it was the first time I could actually properly observe projection mapped works on architecture.

However, I have to admit that I was a little underwhelmed, partly because I had way too high expectations from seeing works that appealed to me over the internet. To be fair, I also did not spend sufficient time to understand the works better.

I think that this is one of the more interesting facades, as the segments were used either in symmetry or to display different images. The eyes were particularly… eye-catching. They really were! The placement and sheer size made it noticeable, and was was interesting was how I felt that the eyes almost humanised the building. I felt that the building was personified in a way, and this establishes a connection between the viewer and the building.

This was one of the more disappointing ones, I feel, but it is hard to say because there are so many factors involved that made the experience not as enjoyable as the rest of the projection works.

I am pretty sure a lot of consideration has been put in to making this work, but this is my personal biased take.

The features of the building itself made it challenging to show any clear elements. There is no wide, clear plane, and I felt that the images were projected on anyways, making it hard to focus on them, and I felt that the features weren’t used well. They did have that short segment with the sand filling up the pillars, but that was pretty much it… I became uninterested in the story they were trying to tell because there was too much distraction. The trees were also a hindrance, and blocked the projection.

Is there a better way to use this building for projection mapping? I myself am not sure what would be effective in this case.

This was really interesting because I viewed this work with previous knowledge of the subject matter – I recently did a presentation on William Farquhar and his collection of natural history drawings. I enjoyed watching the drawings transform into a kaleidoscopic animation. I felt that the elements were used well, and the colours worked well too.

However, I do feel that the location was not the best, and that the wall was simply used as a screen. You can easily have this projection showcased anywhere else. There was nothing of it that contributed to the architecture, and there was nothing of the architecture that contributed to the projection.

Unfortunately, I didn’t see this work!

This is one of the works which I enjoyed more! Even though the scale is smaller, I feel that it was still impactful. The message is clearer in this work, and I enjoyed the narrative that it told. I liked how the features of the architecture was used, for example how the workers were projected on to the pillars, likening the two, and effectively illustrating that these workers were the foundation to Singapore. There are also great parts of the building that allowed for space for text, which instead of being disruptive, helps to convey the narrative better.

This work was also fun. I thought that the architectural features were aptly used, since the main focus could clearly be pointed out. The characters shown on the tower stood out, and the animations surrounding it enhanced the storytelling without being too distracting. Moreover, there is an actual space for the audience to lounge around while watching the work. It was much better and more intimate compared to the experience trying to view the ones on National Gallery, since they were so big and there wasn’t enough distance from where we stood to view the work.

They were really fun animations. The colours and patterns definitely catch people’s attention. It reminds me of The Resident as there are kaleidoscopic elements too. Overall, it didn’t stand out as much for me.