Category Archives: Foundation 3D 1 – G1

3D: Checking out SEM + modular construction

For project 3, we were assigned to find a ‘shape’ from a SEM image, and constructing a structure from it!

I chose the SEM of pu’er tea! It looks interesting with both a long & narrow strip, and round blobs attached to the sides.


shapes that I had picked out from the first picture

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Coming up with possible structure designs and considering what materials can I use

In the end I went with the nest-looking design, as its cup shape seems to be more relatable to ‘tea’.

I had already planned to use cotton buds to represent the blobs. So there’s that. But in order to construct the bent loopy ‘strings’ to create the nest, I need to find something flexible and is long and narrow. Here’s some of the materials that I used:


Got a styrofoam ball so that the strings can wrapped around it while being covered in craft glue. When it dries, removing it from the styrofoam ball will thus form a hardened round shape.


The raffia strings were difficult to work with as it’s made entirely out of plastic, thus being unable to glue down to the spherical ball. The twine was fine to work with but the structure looked too stiff, not exactly portraying the texture that I envisioned my structure to be.

I ended up finding this raffia string that is made out paper! It was able to adhere well to the styrofoam ball and giving the sleek looking texture that I wanted, woohoo!


What it looks like on the ball. I also plucked up a few strings to make it look messier (nest)

After removing the ball and trimming the edges down. I hot-glued the cotton buds on to random parts of the strings from different angles. Here is the finished product!! (o˘◡˘o)

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I like how bright my sculpture looks and I guess it may be more likely to draw people in to look closely at it? Hahaha. In the end it looks more like a bowl/cover than a nest, but the overall shape still looks nice and gives off the ‘messy’ structure that I wanted.

The method of using the styrofoam ball was also really fun as it was my first time trying it out, but it actually helped made the strings super stiff and secure, but not compromising the original texture of the strings. Now that I think about it, it’s interesting how we can create a sculpture just by deriving a shape/pattern from another object.

That’s all, bye!

(in case anyone was wondering what happened to the twine version, hahaha)



For our second 3D project, it’s string sculptures!

My string sculpture goes by the theme of ‘Fire’. During the thinking process, I was inspired by Lydia’s Water-themed string sculpture.



For my first draft, I cut a few random lines in a piece of paper so that I could fold the different edges to build up the figure, similar to the shape of a bonfire. I also used red, orange, and yellow strings to convey the meaning.


At this stage, the idea of including strings in my design was simply to piece the different strips together, instead of incorporating it into my design. I also had no prior planning on the locations of the holes and direction of where my strings were going.

Which was why in my second draft, I scratched the idea of cutting the paper/plastic sheet and did more research in ways that I can present strings as a shape form.




I used a harder black vanguard paper for stronger structure support. I also pre-poked the holes so that I would have a clearer idea throughout the creation process on where should the strings go.

All the strings from the circle converged into the centre hole in the line. The strings from the square joining up to all the holes in the line, with each side of the square joining up differently from changing angles. This formed a cone shape that was surrounded with ‘slanted walls’.

However, the overall piece looked very complicated and messy. It was also very time consuming to make sure all the strings were tied tightly, which was especially difficult since multiple strings were condensed in one hole. There were also two sides of the square being incomplete because it was too difficult to keep track of which string should go in which direction… 🙁




The cone shape made from the strings looked pretty neat, so I thought, why not make two circles and twist the strings in a way to form two cones!


This the final look! I also attached strings from lines on both side, forming a rectangular wall that intertwined with the cones, because I thought that the sculpture will look too dull if it was simply just the cones in a single colour.

However, Peter also mentioned that although the structure looked nice and proper, it did not reflect the original idea that I had.




And so, for my final piece, I decided to incorporate the new learnt skills of making a cone and at the same time, conveying the theme of ‘Fire’ too!

I made two circles, but this time, I used two coloured strings – red and yellow, and attached them in different directions, to form two different types of cones, forming a free-flowing conical shape, much alike to a burning fire.

I also added lines at the side, but instead of being straight, they were slightly wavy, making the ‘walls’ look more interesting. They were also made using light and dark blue strings to imitate the blue flames.

I really like how the overall piece turned out because it is a lot more vibrant, and also showcase the skills that I had learnt from the stringing process.


When looking from different angles, the combination of the multi-coloured and the variations in the angles of the strings gives a fresh interesting trippy-looking perspective. It’s also pretty cool how the colours of the strings were reflected on the plastic sheet too.

Overall this project was like journey of discovery and experimentation, finding out what fits the aesthetics of the work yet sticking to what I want to convey as well. I learnt how to utilise space and my materials too. And most importantly, I am proud of my final piece and enjoyed how fun the process was even though it was difficult to approach and manage.

3D Project 1: Octopus & Penguin

Whoosh, fast forward from our scavenger hunting day at the Thieves Market to last week: when we assembled the parts that we gathered!

From the trip, I got a tap faucet part, zips, a chain, a metal fork, a few metal springs and a connecting wire plug.



In class, I took most of my time making a stand from a torchlight. I was worried that my sculpture will not look nice if I didn’t have a something to hold the sculpture up. But in the end I discarded it anyway because the stand looks too overpowering.

The overall assembling process is fun! Fitting/scaling and cutting and piecing (with hot glue haha) the different pieces together was quite challenge but it is such a satisfaction when you see your end product.

Although there are pairings in the octopus’s tentacles – the chains and zips. I like the fact the remaining two tentacles are not a pair and actually look quite different from each other hahaha (sorry OCD people oops). One is a plastic wire plug and the other is three springs being glued together. The springs tentacle is actually my favourite.

And ta-dah! This is the end product of my octopus:





After I was done with my octopus, I still had some spare time so I went around the class looking for spare parts to make a second animal. The first thing that caught my eye was Calista’s soap dispenser and the pumper reminded me of a bird’s head. I also glued it together with a cylindrical shaped container, cut out pieces of spoons, and leftover chain pieces from the tentacle. And therefore, I ended up with the second sculpture – a penguin!



Overall, I like this project as it challenges us to think of new ways to ‘beautify’ old/used materials instead of creating it from scratch, giving these objects a new value as it can be something else other than its original purpose. The process of finding the materials and assembling them is also enjoyable. When we look at these sculptures, we will think of the story behind these objects too!

Thieves Market Adventure

About two weeks ago, we went to Kelantan Road’s Thieves Market to search for hidden treasures to construct our sculptures for our 3D class’s first project! For this project, we were assigned to use scrap parts and reuse them to make animal sculptures.



I went with the intention of making an elephant and a backup plan of a shark, but on the day itself, I am still quite unsure with the idea and the size of the object so I spent quite a while at the thieves market feeling very lost and confused. The weather that day was making my feelings worse too, IT WAS SO HOT (but the photos turned out nice because of the good lighting haha)

But after interacting with the different shop owners and discovering so many interesting little trinkets, I felt a lot better and suddenly LO AND BEHOLD, I spotted this tap faucet piece and that feeling was magical~ (*O*)

It instantly reminded me of an octopus head so it was then when I decided to make an octopus sculpture. I thought of how it will be interesting to if I used materials of different textures as the tentacles. But then and again, I had to keep it as simplistic as before as it was advisable that I use as little materials as possible. I just bought a few long dangly parts and see what I can do in class.


Overall, the experience in the thieves market really opened my eyes. Even in discarded items, there is still beauty in them and this value is irreplaceable. To be honest, I did not dare visit the market even though I have seen it before. I think it was because I was ‘scared’ (??) of the people and I did not think that I will find anything worthy. However, during the trip that day: the most important and memorable events that I remembered are the interactions with the lovely and friendly shop owners and my thrill when I find something interesting!

I love the fact that my expectations did not match the reality.