Project 3: Ego (Final)


Before diving right in, view my process here! & my research here

As I was brainstorming for Project 3, I thought about the things that are often associated with me. (Daphne + (blank)).

First is Starbucks. I used to go there a lot to do my work and hang out with my friends. Besides, I even worked there about 6 months. I really enjoy the ambience of Starbucks and also had a lot of fun working there. Hence, naturally I included Starbucks and I into one of my equations.

Second is the sunset. I often witness the sunset (I take notice of it more than the sunrise) and even recently, after being in NTU for a few months. I realise my timetable has often cause me to leave school around 5.30 to 6pm, which is when I will often witness it, especially when it glares into my eyes. Because of that, I often take a snap of it and post it on my social media platforms. My close friends often comment about those sunset pictures and hence I used it as a subject matter for my second equation.

Third is Cupcorn!!!!!!!! I would say my favourite food/ snack is corn, especially corn in a cup. I often have it when I was super young and it did not stop until now. You can say I am obsessed with cup corn and I can have it anytime and anywhere. But I can be rather picky with them which means I will travel for good quality cupcorn too. (I really like the one at Nex, just saying)!! Hence, I used it for my third equation.

Fourth is music. I started learning the piano at a young age, and I have a sort of love-hate relationship with it. But I grew to like it more. Being exposed to music at a young age gave me a platform to express myself and learn things not everyone gets to (which I am also thankful for). Besides, I was in my school’s concert band and played the trumpet. I am familiar with brass instruments and got the chance to learn the instrument in depth after getting into an external band, which I dropped out of after a few months. But I would say the experience made me love the instrument more. Even recently, I started singing for a group of audience since I am in my hall’s jamband. Started singing in my bathroom, but now to a group of audience is a whole different story and it a testimony of me stepping out of my comfort zone. Hence, throughout the different phases of my life, I could see evidently how music has always been part of it, even in the smallest ways!

Okay enough of the ramblings!! Here are my final products.

Equation 1:

Composition 1: Exhaust

About: This composition uses personification and speaks about me, as the emptied cup, without Starbucks in my life. Hence, the cup looks like it was spilled and the contents are slowly emptied from the cup. Starbucks coffee has kept me up through my important nights and without it, I would not have a lot of stories to tell and a hideout place. Also, the Starbucks mermaid logo is illustrated as me in blonde, since Starbucks is often seen as a "white-girl" thing. (apart from the fact that my favourite colour is yellow)

Colour scheme: Triadic Colours. Green, violet & orange.
Composition 2: Advert

About: This composition speaks about how people would see Starbucks, since their marketing strategy is quite remarkable I would say. The wording says,"Sustenance. Coffee, tea, frappe", which are the different types of beverages Starbucks sells. The hot cup illustrates coffee, the whipped cream illustrates frappes and the tea bag illustrates tea, all in one cup. The wings added are inspired by redbull's catch phrase, "Redbull gives you wings", similarly to me, Starbucks gives me wings. 

Colour scheme: Analogous colours. Yellow-green, yellow and yellow-orange.
Composition 3: Conquer
About: This composition speaks about me + starbucks. Since I used to work there, I have my apron on me (the cup) and my name tag on, which is how it exactly look like. The apron looks like a superman cape because with Starbucks, I will feel like my own superman because I know I will be able to conquer whatever work I have and the fact that I survived working 6 months there. The bag of spilled beans is from an incident I went through while I was still working there. What happened was I needed to refill the coffee beans and ended up spilling them while on the job which was super embarrassing. Also, the beans are placed that way as if like a confetti for my mini celebration. Also, the beverage shown is green tea cream, my favourite drink from Starbucks, with extra whipped cream. 

Colour scheme: Analogous colours. Yellow-green, yellow and yellow-orange.

Equation 2:

Composition 1: (Sun)glasses
About: This composition is a quirky way of subverting the word "sunglasses". I gave it a literal meaning. This illustrates me masking and doing my own thing with the "sunglasses" on. I am seen as a blonde is as a continuation of my previous equation.

Colour Scheme: Triadic Colours. Red, yellow & blue.
Composition 2: Expectation

About: This composition is as it is named, expectation. This is how I would normally see sunset on the internet or social media. A sunset over a horizon, a very glorious sight. (to be continued)

Colour Scheme: Square Colours. Yellow, blue-green, violet and red-orange.
Composition 3: Reality

About: (continued) Yet, this is how I would usually witness sunset in NTU or around my neighbourhood. Sunset amongst the high-rise buildings of Singapore. 

Colour Scheme: Yellow-orange, red-violet & blue.

Process for Equation 3

Composition 1: Ma(i)ze

About: This composition illustrates me in a corn maize in the midst of all the corn cobs, searching for the right one for me, since I am picky about the corn I eat. 

Colour Scheme: Triadic Colours. Yellow, blue & red.
Composition 2: The One

About: This composition speaks about me (finally) picking out the right corn cob from the corn maize.

Colour Scheme: Split complementary. Yellow, red-violet and green.
Composition 3: Hunger

About: This composition speaks about me finally having the cup of corn after much work of searching and choosing the right corn. The backgrounds gives emphasis and focus to the cup of corn in my hand, like a celebratory shot *cue heavenly music* very much like that.

Colour Scheme: Split complementary. Yellow-orange, red-orange and blue.
Composition 1: Adapter Issues

About: This composition speaks about the current situation I am facing (still facing). Me losing my adapter for my ear-piece jack. I use the iPhone 7, which requires the adapter which I think is really redundant, yet stops me from me enjoying my music. 

Colour Scheme: Split complementary. Orange, yellow & blue-violet.
Composition 2: Mainstream Music

About: This composition speaks about just pure mainstream music, which you would normally hear from the radio. A retro radio was used because my first impression of music was from a very young age with my grandmother and she always carries a small old radio wherever she goes. Also, the circles added resembles beats that comes from the radio. It is positioned slightly off centre.

Colour Scheme: Split complementary. Red, yellow and blue.
Composition 3: Brand New

About: This composition speaks about music and I. All elements are my interactions with music. The old microphone is to have a continuity from the previous retro radio and shows my interaction with singing. The bell at the bottom illustrates my concert band days when I played the trumpet. The score overlayed at the background is a piano piece I am currently playing, Nocturne No. 20 in C Sharp Minor. The rose blossoming in the middle shows a brand new start I always have with music, learning different instruments and how it is always a part of my life. Also, it is inspired by a band called LANY that I recently love and they have a rose in the middle of their album which I thought is a nice touch to the composition and gives it a focus.

LANY Album

Colour Scheme: Complementary colours. Red & green



I thought this project made me realize a bit more about myself, and be more self-aware of the things that are associated with me. Through this, I learnt about the different colour theories and throughout the project, I realized that I am attracted to yellow, blue and red and are commonly seen together in one composition.

Apart from that, I also got to learn illustrating on the illustrator from my classmates which I used for my Starbucks equation using shapes and vectors. The rest were hand drawn and scanned in. The colours were also added on illustrator.

Overall, I like the pastel-ish feel my compositions have and looking at the final product, I can really tell that these are really things associated with me.


; EGO IN DIFFERENT SETTINGS: Introduction & Research

Diving right into Project 3 right after Project 2 ended, let’s begin the cycle by doing some research before real work is done!

In Project 3, colour is the main element, using the different colours to “visually manipulate the aesthetics to produce a desired outcome”.


Colours have 3 attributes; hue, saturation and value.

Hue: an element in the colour wheel. Example, there are mustard yellow, and lemon yellow, but they belong in the same colour family — yellow, a hue.

Saturation: refers to the “intensity” and “brilliance of a colour.

Value: refers to the lightness and darkness of a colour.


taken from:–complementary-color-wheel-complimentary-colors.jpg

Monochromes Harmony

Is a basic colour scheme, using one hue and using variations within the particular hue.

Generally create works that are balanced, visually pleasing.

Analogous Harmony

Analogous colour schemes use colors that are next to each other on the color wheel.

taken from:

Analogous harmony warm and cool

Warm colours: orange, red, yellow and its combinations

Cool colours: blue, green and light purple and its combinations.

Complementary hues

Colors that are opposite each other on the color wheel are considered to be complementary colours.

taken from:

Split Complementary

The split complementary color scheme is a variation of the complementary color scheme.

This colour scheme has a strong contrast as the complementary colour scheme, with less tension.

taken from:



Hue, Value, Saturation

; FORREST GUMP – Process

As we dive into Project 2: Forrest Gump, there were some brainstorming and process that I have captured! Here it is!

Brainstorming for quote:

Les Miserables – Even the darkest night will end and the sun will rise.

sun and moon on both opposite ends (using Japanese / Russian Construction)

Finding Dory -When Life gets you down you know what you’ve gotta do? Just Keep Swimming

space context instead of the sea?

Toy Story – To infinity and beyond!

Enchanted – Life’s enchanted cup sparkles near the brim

Alice In Wonderland – Imagination is the only war against reality

Hacksaw Ridge – With the world so set on tearing apart, It does seem like such a bad thing for me to put a little bit of it back together.

DRAFTS FOR “When life gets you down you know what you’ve gotta do? Just keep swimming”-finding nemo


drafts for “Even the darkest night will end and the sun will rise” — Les Misérables

drafts for “to infinity and beyond” – toy story

drafts for “Imagination is the only war against reality” – ALICE IN WONDERLAND




View my final products here!

3D Project 3: Scent – 2D Planes & 3D Planes

For the first lesson of Project 3, we were to bring two scents along with us, one that evokes a pleasant memory and the other one that evokes an unpleasant memory.

Here are my scents..!

Pleasant Memory

The scent that I brought that evokes a pleasant memory is a perfume from The Body Shop.


The perfume was the very one I wore for my first date. Then as an adolescent, I often look up to my mom in terms of dressing up and even learning how to put make-up for the first time. I knew I had to dress up and that also means smelling pleasant. Instinctively, I went to my mother’s cupboard of perfume and picked a random one.

Hence, this scent has since reminded me of my first date.

Unpleasant Memory

The scent that I brought was the scent of moth balls. (My roommate happen to have them innocent)


When I was very much younger, at the age of 5 to 12 years old, I was left alone at my grandmother’s house very often. This is due to the busy schedule that my parents had and I remember the lonely nights I had to spend over at my grandmother’s place because of that. As an elderly, my grandmother loves to place moth balls around the house to keep it smelling fresh and to remove the water vapour in the air that causes things to get mouldy. Hence, the iconic thing about my grandmother’s house is the smell of moth balls, especially in her room where I use to spend the night. The smell of moth balls brings me back to the unpleasant childhood experience I had to go through being left alone at my grandmother’s place. (Even so, I really love my grandmother! She watched me grew up!)

Learning about 2D Planes and 3D Planes

During class itself, we were taught the difference between 2D Planes and 3D Planes.

2D Planes Side View – A line

3D Plane Side View – Looks much like a ribbon

2D Planes

3D Planes

Straight Axis Curved Axis
Bent Axis Broken Axis
Curved Axis Twisted Axis
Complex Axis (Combination of Curved & Bent) Grouped Axis

Thereafter, we were to construct a 3D model that consists of a dominant, sub-dominant and a sub-ordinate using strips of paper of differing widths.


Since we are required to describe scents in a manner or two, I decided to research on the ways I can use adjectives to describe them.



You can view the full PDF here: Intangible touchable scents


4D – Project 2: The Subverted Object

In Project 2, we discover the idea of subverting the meaning behind objects. I went on to research on more ideas .. this is something I found super interesting!

The word I got for this project is KIWI!


The Object


KIWI & its associated place

This shot was taken at a place that people will conventionally find kiwis. I thought the texture of the plastic bag that evokes a blurry feel gives more emphasis on the kiwis itself, yet still included in the picture to give a sense of context as to where the picture was taken – the supermarket / fruit store, essentially the place of purchase.

The portrait photo was not chosen as the background gave too much distraction, such as the air con fan and the extensive inclusion of the plastic bag holding the kiwis.

KIWI & its identity

The close-up shot of the kiwis was not initially included into the presentation as it gave too little context as to where it was taken, which should tell its reader where you can normally and conventionally find and purchase kiwis. However, I thought this shot showed the texture and the shape of the rarer, yellow kiwi very well. A green kiwi was not used as I thought it was too conventional and too predictable. I included the Zespri brand of the kiwi as the focus of the picture as I found out that Zespri is one of the largest marketer of the kiwifruit. (About Zespri) Therefore, the branding is also a huge part of the identity of the kiwifruit.

Some Test Shots:

A KIWI Cross-section

Something unique about the kiwifruit is also its cross-section. Therefore, I cannot miss that out! I used the rule of third to spice up this shot a little!

Some Test Shots:

The Subversion

I had many problems trying to subvert the idea of kiwi as it does not have a very apparent link to a different meaning. For example, the banana is also universally linked to a smile.

Despite that, I played with the brand of a shoe polish also called Kiwi, as well as the shape and unique qualities of it, like its cross section.


Original Photo:

After Photoshop:

Since the kiwi shoe polish has a sole purpose (see what i did there?) of polishing up a men’s leather shoe, I wanted to switch it up a bit. I used a white sneakers instead to bring in the idea of kiwi as a fruit too, apart from it being a shoe polish. The fact is that if you smear a kiwifruit to your shoes, you will dirty it. Hence, in this photo composition, apart from the apparent paradox, I wanted to play with irony as well. True enough, the next scene after this shot is taken will be a stained sneakers that will not look good, definitely not polishing it.

Kiwi Chips

Before Edit

After Edit

Kiwi seen as healthy food.

I thought sliced kiwi looked a lot like chips, so I played with that, riding on the fact that potato chips are unhealthy and oily food, whereas kiwifruit is known to be healthy.

Chips are usually “comfort food”

The orange hue in the photo accentuates the term “comfort food” together with the cozy background of a teddy bear and pillows.

A female figure is used because females are usually more associated with eating disorders like binge-eating and anorexia. (Research)

Test Shots:

Fit in

Looking at the shape of the kiwi, the egg seems like the one I can play with. Both rounded and elongated in shape, I thought I incorporate eggs and the egg tray in Task 2.

Fitting a kiwi onto the egg tray is no problem, but closing the cover is

Notice that while a kiwi could be placed on the egg tray, it is, however, impossible to close the cover. So does it fit in or not? Debatable?

Add the CAPTION!


I knew I wanted to use this image to add a caption to further touch on the topic of whether the kiwi does fit into the egg tray. However, the caption was a tough one.

“where do we belong” was part of the selection, however, I thought it was a little too self-explanatory. Less is more.

I then worked with “FIT IN” since it has been a phrase that came to my mind when I brainstormed on the idea of fitting the kiwi into an egg tray.

How should I execute it? What font should I use? What message am I convey?

I first brainstormed with what message I wanted to work with. I wanted to challenge the impact of social media on the youths today.

How then should I execute it? As I was brainstorming, I thought what better way of coming up with the caption than to use Instagram since my message was related to social media. I did not like the idea of doing it up on an Instagram post, hence I worked with Instagram’s story features like its default font and colour.

I wanted the caption to be large and eye-catching, therefore, I put the black words against the white background.

The inclusion of question marks is to challenge the audience the idea of whether the kiwi actually fit into the egg tray. It is clustered to form an arrow, which is a directional and powerful sign of signal, very much like how our society “forces” us to be of a certain way. Similar to our society, the youths of today struggle to find an identity and because of the people around us, we are forced to fit in or be discriminated or bullied. People are expected to be put through a cookie-cutter even when every single person is unique and different in their own ways and cannot be fitted on a one-size “egg tray”. The one-size-fit-all theory is also challenged.

Task 3 – Research: Fonts & Meaning

  1. Serif Fonts

Example: Times New Roman

The presence of short lines on each letter gives it a formal feel. It is usually perceived as delicate, beautiful, expensive, warm and old. Usually used successfully in business news headers. However, when used in the body paragraph, the sizing may need to be noted as a small font will be hard on the eyes.

2. Sans Serif Fonts


Best used on the screen. It also creates a clean and intuitive reading process for the readers on screen. They are usually perfect for headlines and body paragraph. It produce an informal feel, hence not suitable for legal documents, however perfect for personal blogs and light-hearted magazines.

3. Script Fonts

The cursive fonts are best for screen use. They evoke an elegant feel. Some cursive fonts are similar to handwritings and hence are perfect for invitation cards.

4. Decorative Fonts

Decorative fonts builds a visual theme to your design that you put against. They are great for headlines but not really for the body. The emotional feel they evoke to the audience differs for each font.


One apparent example is the Harry Potter film cover and the “Harry Potter” font. It is distinctive and easy to recognise.

taken from:


Fonts and Meaning

The Removal, Replacement and Redefinition Template

Artist Research:

Chema Madoz

Madoz is a photographer from Spain and is recognised for his monochromatic and surrealistic photos.

pear or lightbulb?

toilet paper or scroll?

drain or a plate holder?

After looking at his photos, I realise that his works often make me think twice as to what he is actually photographing. This inspired me to make my works questionable and debatable at first glance.


Chema Madoz

It’s a Wrap!

Looking back at this project, I really enjoyed thinking out of the box and thinking atypically. Even though I had a lot of challenge subverting kiwi initially, with the research and looking at other artists’ works, I overcame that challenge and managed to still churn out ideas for Kiwi! (which i’m very happy about :))

Task 3 was a little to cluttered because of the question marks (as mentioned during critique), I thought I could have been more sensitive to the aesthetic of the message than the delivery of the message. That is something to work on!

All in all, this project helped me to look at things a little differently now! Hope you enjoyed viewing my work!





; FORREST GUMP: Fantasy Concretised

Final Product presented on 16 October 2017

Before going head-on in approaching the project, I did some research!

Also, view my work process here!

overall concept



The overall concept for Project 2: Forrest Gump is Fantasy. As part of the overall concept, I wanted for my designs to evoke afterthoughts to its viewers, further reflections or realisations.
Fantasy, using the imagination to bring forth something that might seem illogical at first glance, yet slowly concretise itself.

“When Life gets you down you know what you’ve gotta do? just keep swimming”–finding nemo 2009

Final Product (As printed on a tote bag)

totebag; exposed & silkscreened in class

“When Life Gets Hard You Know What You Got To Do? Just Keep Swimming” — Finding Nemo 2009

Main Idea

The idea behind this piece is to bring out the irony in the way we face challenges in life.

The astronaut is moving away from the ground (the planet) and the apparent dangers around him – shark that is emerging out of the water in space, the running cacti that are holding onto knives.
Since the quote can be understood figuratively as well, I decided to move away from the verb in the quote — swimming, I switched it up a little by using something seemingly the opposite of swimming. Walking/ running seemed too uninteresting, hence I decided to switched up the context of the design and use the astronaut to bring the context out of earth, something we can fully understand. Yet, the apparent dangers that he is facing is relatable as well, literally.
Bringing in sea creatures, the shark, and the cacti out of context and combining them in the same context I thought is a way to play with the idea of surrealism as well. Also, playfully adding the shark and cacti that has human qualities also tapped on the overall concept of Fantasy.
Deeper meaning..
However, a plot twist to the design is that there is a crack on his mask that is stripping away his oxygen supply. The blurry lower half of his body depicts the shortening of his life due to the shortage of oxygen supply that he was not aware of. It aims to challenge the quote itself as to whether we should “just keep swimming” in face of obstacles, or should we first analyse the problem, then come up with an action plan.

“Even the darkest night will end and the sun will rise” — Les Misérables

“Even the Darkest Night will End and the Sun will Rise” — Les Misérables 2012

Main Idea

This design is based off a true story about a World War II Japanese soldier, Hiroo Onoda, who was ordered to not just fight, but also to stay alive. He was assigned to fight in a forested area in Western Philippines. He escaped capture and stayed in the forest for 29 years even after the war ended. He survived through stealing food from the farmers or look for random food in the jungle. (View his full story here)

I had initially taken the quote very literally and after a consult, Joy told me about Onoda’s story. I thought this quote could resonate with how he was feeling while being trapped in the jungle and tie in well with his story as well.


Thereafter, I decided to tap on the phrase “You Are What You Eat” for this composition. By using food to depict the forest brings out the idea of Fantasy. Just like Onoda’s hunt for food everyday, unpredictable, I decided to use random food I can think of to add to the composition, as well as the size and shape of it.

Ice cream cones are used to depict the dense vegetation in the forest and the fusilli noodle depicts the forest bed, since fusilli pasta are always served flat on the plate.

Notice the Japanese flag at the background is used to relate the composition literally back to the quote itself. The off-centre placement of the flag is to capture the movement of the moon setting or the sun rising. I overlayed a cookie in the circle  of the flag to further blur out the interpretation of the background. Is it a Japanese flag, a sun rising, a moon setting? Or all of the above?


“To Infinity and Beyond” — Toys Story 2011

Main Idea

This piece challenges the idea of doing good or what is convenient.

The White Rabbit from Alice in Wonderland is incorporated into this composition to borrow his character to further help the audience understand this piece better, or resonate with them better.

The stairs that seems to be limitless brings out the idea of infinity in the quote. How I wanted to further work on the word “infinity” is to use the idea of Heaven and Hell, two extreme opposites.

This piece strive question its audience, do good or do what’s convenient?


The idea of heaven and hell cannot be represented, except by tapping on the common stereotypes that hell can be associated with extreme heat, and heaven with the sky. Hence, I tap on that as an apparent way of portraying both complete opposite elements in one composition.

In Alice in Wonderland, the White Rabbit is someone who is constantly afraid of offending people and he is often put in a dilemmatic position as to whether he should help Alice out in Wonderland and risk offending the Queen or leave the poor girl alone in a foreign place. Tapping on this character of his, I thought he will be a perfect subject matter for this composition as we talk about doing good or doing what is convenient. He could choose to help, and take a step closer to heaven, or be indifferent and take a step closer to hell.

“imagination is the war against reality”– Alice in wonderland


“Imagination is the War Against Reality” — Alice in Wonderland

Main Idea

As I approach this quote, I first brainstormed what the “war” of reality is? Global Warming and Climate Change then came into my mind (perhaps it is because I was a geography student? HAHA)

Playing with the past and the present, I portrayed comrades, used to fight war in ancient time, saving the reality today.


The comrades from ancient times coming to “save” today’s day might be more accurate than you think it is.

Deeper meaning…

They are riding on horses and not automobiles that we use today, eliminating the release of harmful gases to the atmosphere. Moreover, their military weapon does not consist of chemical weapons, guns or rifles, depicting a very manual mode of fighting the war of today.


final words

Overall, I approached this project afraid because I was very unfamiliar with the concept of surrealism and having to study and produce relevant works was a challenge for me. Even so, I really liked the idea of using movie quotes and then giving them our own taste to it! Also, although it was also my first time silkscreening, I thoroughly enjoyed it and despite the long and tedious process, it was one filled with anticipation as we go one step closer to printing our designs onto the tote bags.

Here is a full PDF of my final works!

; FORREST GUMP: Introduction & exploring the different art movements and artist.

Approaching Project 2: Forrest Gump, we will have to select 4 movies quotes to create a visual narrative that expresses watch of the quote only using symbols, pictograms, dingbats, icons and engravings. With the help of Photoshop, the final project should be in black and white half-toned. At the end of it, we will even get a silkscreen print on our tote bag!

Before all that fun happens, there needs to be some work done…

Here are some of my research done!

Art Movement: Dadaism

Dadaism was an artistic and literary art movement of the European avant-garde in the early 20th century that flourished in Paris but first began in Zurich, Switzerland. It was influenced by other art movements like Cubism, Futurism, Constructivism and Expressionism. Developed in reaction to World War I, it is to reject logic, reason and aestheticism of modern capitalist society.

Dadaism is the first conceptual art movement where the focus of the artworks is not on its aesthetics, but how it was created to challenge, to generate difficult questions about the society, and the purpose of the work and what it implies and bring across to the mass. The main intent of the members of Dadaism is to boldly reject all norms of the bourgeois culture.

Some famous artists to note are Marcel Duchamp, Salvador Dali, André Breton, etc.

Some famous works include:

titled: Fountain, Marcel Duchamp | taken from:

titled: L.H.O.O.Q., Marcel Duchamp | taken from:

Art Movement: Surrealism 

Born mostly out of Dadaism, Surrealism is an art and cultural movement that began in the early 1920s started by Andre Breton (who was a major member of the Dada community), and is best known for its visual artworks and writings. Many surrealist artists painted illogically with photographic precision. Surrealist are imaginative and drive away from rationalism and literary realism in hopes of revealing the contradictions in the everyday world and spur on revolution.

Some famous artists to note are Pablo Picasso, Rene Margitta,

Some famous works include;

titled: The Persistence of Memory, Salvador Dali | taken from:

Contrast between Surrealism and Dadism

Their emergence – Dadaism emerged during the period of World War I , while Surrealism emerged during a period of peace and prosperity.

Where they flourished – Dada artists where scattered across Europe while Surrealist artist were self-contained in Paris.

View on life – To Dada artists, life has no meaning, no reason, no purpose, and no logic. For Surrealist artists, life has meaning; one has to find its logic by unlocking visual and verbal codes secreted in the chambers of the unconscious mind where one finds Freud’s “uncanny.” Hence, Dada artists were more pessimistic while Surrealist artists tend to be more onward looking.

Dada photomontage may have used the technique of putting one randomly found image next to another, but the intent was to undermine meaning. Surrealism seeks new meaning, another meaning, an unexpected meaning, a sur-real meaning, but always, Surrealism wants live to mean something.

Style of expression – Both Dadaism and Surrealism sought to create works “automatically” without the conscious control of oneself.

Art Movement – Russian Constructivism

Russian Constructivism is the last and most influential modern art movement originated from Russian in the 20th century. It is inspired by Cubism, Suprematism and Futurism, which sought to abolish the traditional artistic concern with composition, and replace it with ‘construction. In its essence, this art movement sought to move working place from the studios to the factories. Russian Constructivism also work with the characteristics of many materials such as glass, wood, in construction to experiment and deploy different materials to demonstrate a certain idea. (usually that of the experiences in modern life).

Some famous artists to note are Alexander Rodchenko, El Lissitzky, Lyubov Popova, etc.

Some famous works include;

titled: Books, Alexander Rodchenko | taken from:

Beat the Whites with the Red Wedge, El Lissitzky | taken from:

Artist Research

André Breton

Andre Breton was a major member in the Dada society and a founder of Surrealism. He was into unconventional ways of creating art and had united a group of disparate artists to join him.

He wrote the Surrealist Manifesto to declare that Surrealism is all about “pure psychic automatism” that later deeply affected future art movements like Abstract Expressionism.

One of Breton’s greatest belief is that art is an anti-war protest, of which he postulated in World War I, which regain potency during and after World War II. While he was doing so, the other expressionist artists were creating art in response to the rage regarding the war itself.



The Art Story – Dadaism 

The Art Story – Surrealism

Art History Unstuffed – Contrast Between Dadaism and Surrealism 

The Art Story – Russian Constructivism

The Art Story – Andre Breton

; PANDORA: Final Product + Process & Research

As I approach this project further, I decided to do research on a few relevant artists that were mentioned in class to gain a little inspiration as well as experimenting with the materials I have on hand to build small models. This post will include my processes, research then the final products itself with its practical uses. Do look at my previous post on my initial brainstorming here.

The Magical (P/T)ower


These were the initial idea, as I wanted to make a certain object seem like it is “floating”. Model 1 was my subsequent idea, yet I thought it was not convincing enough due to the material used for the “floating” object. I decided to work with clay to give off the idea of weight even more.

Subsequently, Model 2 was birthed as I worked with a larger and stable styrofoam box. The string was supposed to be deemed “transparent” to bring out the initial idea more.

Final Product:


Dominant: White Styrofoam

Sub-dominant: Clear Plastic Sheet Box

Sub-ordinate: Cube Clay

Thereafter, clear plastic sheet were made into a steady box to sustain the weight of the clay. The dominant is made white to place more emphasis on the “floating” clay, bringing out the idea of Magic.

Inspiration from Soe Fujimoto’s work:

Serpentine Gallery Pavilion | taken from:

Serpentine Gallery Pavilion in detail | taken from:


Soe Fujimoto created this cloud-liked pavilion that seem to ascend to the sky with his very clever use of white grid-liked structures that was placed outside the lawn of Serpentine Gallery Pavilion as he tries to combine nature and man-made structures.

How he tap on transparency inspired me to inculcate clear materials like acrylic or clear plastic sheets into my models to accentuate the idea of Magic. Also, I liked his use of white in this architecture as it indeed gave the illusion that the structure is ascending towards the sky, hence seem to be cloud-liked. Therefore, for The Magical (P/T)ower, I made the dominate white to place more focus on the clay material, very much like how Soe Fujimoto wanted to place emphasis on nature rather than the architecture.

Practical Uses:

  1. Hamster Cage

Hamster Cage | taken from:

The clear plastic transparent section is the living area for the hamsters and the clay section can be the sleeping area for the hamsters or the running wheel for them to exercise.

2. Airport Control Tower

Airport Control Tower | taken from:

When elevated to a certain hight, The Magical (P/T)ower can be built in a large-scale to be a airport control tower. The sub-dominant transparent and translucent section can be the watch area and the sub-ordinate clay section can be an area to store important machineries and signal devices.

The Balancing Trio


Dominant: Royal Blue Styrofoam

Sub-dominant: Clay

Sub-ordinate: Clear Plastic Sheet

Meanwhile, I also researched on Kasuyo Sejima’s works it inspired me to create The Balancing Trio. The idea of models hovering above ground has been in my head as I approached Magic, as well as the idea of illogical balance.

Hence, I wanted by dominant to be the one hovering above the ground and have the sub-dominant to be the one on the ground, making the sub-ordinate the one connect the both together.

The dominant is actually an industrial styrofoam, however, it itself did was not able to convince the idea of weight. Hence, I coloured the dominate royal blue.

The sub-dominant is made out of clay, hence is able to stabilise the entire structure. However, I remove the idea of rigidness from the clay by giving it a fluid structure to bring out the idea of it being wobbly and unable to sustain the whole structure, but it did. To emphasis that point, I added wax to the clay to enhance the idea of fluidity in the sub-dominant, as if it is melting away, unstable and unable to hold the structure.

Animated GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

A clear small piece of plastic was used as the sub-ordinate to hold both the dominant and sub-dominant in place.

Inspiration from Kazuyo Sejima’s work:

The idea of using the void to bring out the word, Magic, more was inspired by Kazuyo Sejima’s works with her use of voids in her architectures.

The Sumida Hokusai Museum | taken from:


This is The Sumida Hokusai Museum done by architect Kazuyo Sejima. Although the voids in this particular architecture is not of main focus but the material, I thought her use of voids brings something distinct to this building.

Something similar is this piece also by Kazuyo Sejima, the voids used in the bottom left and top left of the building gave it a unique character that I wanted to try on for my model.

taken from:

Practical Uses:

  1. Fidget Spinner

taken from:

Not just with its similar structures, I thought the idea of The Balancing Trio also works with the fidget spinner.

2. GPS Satellite

GPS Satellite | taken from:

With the two flaps that sticks out at the side of The Balancing Trio, I thought this structure can be used to build a similar looking satellite as well.


Overall, I enjoyed working and experimenting with what I can do with the blue foams and other materials to create the models. At first, I struggled with trying to see the magic in my models, however, with the help of research and experimenting with the different ideas I can work with, I found it easier to tackle this project. Having first hand experience with construction my model, I thought it was rather exciting and seeing my concept turning into concrete structures gave me a sense of satisfaction. I hope to produce higher quality structures in the upcoming 3D projects, I think that is one thing I need to work on. While constructing The Magical (P/T)ower, I glued the plastic sheets together, however, I felt that with improper planning, the glue got a little messier than I thought it would be and had a lot to clean. However, I thought that my experimentations with initially the boxes then with styrofoam really helped be to better construct my final models.

Go, Observe, Write

This is my take on my trip down to Holland Village on a Wednesday evening at 5pm.

With the regular heat and humidity of Singapore’s climate, one would kill for a taste of an ice cold beverage on a midday here. As drillings and hammering sounds, the “clinks” and the “clanks”, were boisterously sounded, the peace disruptions and not forgetting the unforgiving climate do drive people indoors. Hanging around Holland Village on a late afternoon is not such a great idea after all. Its famous bars and fancy restaurants were just preparing to start their day of business. Yet, a bustling and happening corner stood right out to me. The superfood company, The Project Acai, was packed. Queues that run from cashier to the entrance would usually be detested. However, the atmosphere in the air and the vibe indeed drew people in, especially when its interior is air-conditioned. Hopping onto the bandwagon, I went to grab myself a cup of superfood and scurried to a nearby vacant seat. Pop music, music to my ears, healthy snack in my mouth, views of people pretty much like myself, I feel like I fit in, perfectly.

Yippies and yuppies, they are everywhere I see. The aged, I hardly notice. With charming and well-dressed attendants behind the counter preparing delicious cups of healthy food, no wonder this place is a home ground for the youths. Young couples, still in high school, in their Monday to Friday outfit, each having a cup of Acai in their hands, are seen spending time together. I could see why this place is a magnet to these people, very much like myself. Electronic dance music (EDM), top 100 songs in the hit chart were playing at the background on shuffle. I hardly not recognise the next song that came up. Fairy lights hanging from one light bulb to another, created a fantasy-liked backdrop for friends to relax and chat for as long as they would while eating healthily. Of course, in this tech savvy age, rarely will one start devouring before taking an Instagram worthy photo of the aesthetically attractive cup of Acai that is filled with a rainbow of colours created by the wide variety of fruits in its bowl. Did I mention that one cup of Acai goodness is not cheap too?

The rowdy group of friends seated just adjacent to me slowly became the bane of my existence. Each with a personality, I can see why they are such close buds even after all these years. Taking a break from work nearby the area, The Project Acai has become one of their favourite place to drop-by in the midst of their hectic schedules. Ladies in formal office wear of knee length dresses, make-up half faded out due to the day’s work, and killer heels that seemed to lightly bruised their veiny feet, this pitstop is not a want. Guys in suits, and gelled up hair, smart looking with a hint of dark eye rings, the past few nights must have been a long nighter. Possibly the end of a major project, that day must have been a shorter day for them to enjoy a sweet treat. “Let’s get out of here to get a puff”, as she signals the group with a slight head tilt. Very soon, they were seen heading towards the back ally for the stick that first brought them all together.