Final Assignment

Topic: Food Wastage

Message to convey:

” Buy wisely and eat what you need. Before it spoils, share it & don’t trash it.”


“Singapore generates 788,600 tonnes of food waste.

This means each Singaporean contributes about 146kg of food waste yearly, based on figures released by the National Environment Agency in 2014.”

See more at:


Food waste is generated every single day in Singapore and we all contribute to it.

People tend to purchase or cook more food than they can actually consume and eventually throwing away the excess. Apart from families, supermarkets and the food and beverage industry also plays a part in food wastage. They too dispose food in perfectly edible condition at the end of the business day, or food deemed too ugly to sell; instead of donating to charity organisations. We should not take food for granted and think before wasting food.

To depict this phenomenon, a pair of hands is shown pouring leftovers into a bin that is full of food that are in good condition. Thus all these wasted foods are coloured to show their freshness, stand out in this achromatic piece and catch the viewer’s attention at first glance.

Among all the food wasted, little is being recycled. The recycling rate has dropped throughout the years and little campaigns were organized to promote the awareness of reducing or recycling food waste. Minimal households and businesses have the habit of segregating their food waste for recycling. To highlight this, a cleaner is seen collecting bags of rubbish and throwing them into a garbage truck without thought and consideration.

All the food wasted could be used to help the poor and needy, such as feeding impoverished children who are growing and in need of these nutrients. In this piece, the size of the bin is drawn much bigger than the children. This is to illustrate the fact that the wasted food are beyond their reach.


The entire piece would be carved on lino block and printed in white on black paper. As the highlight of this piece is about food, all foods would be coloured to stand out and capture the viewers’ attention. Charcoal and chalk would also be used to show the road texture and dirt on the children’s clothes.

img_20161105_165946_740Added in cracked texture ground.

img_20161108_120438_436 img_20161108_120600_670

In an overview, Rule of Thirds is applied. The focus for the top part of the piece would be the pair of hands and garbage truck; centre part would be the bin; the bottom part the children.

Test Printing

The idea was to print white on black paper. As the piece has a size of A3, two pieces of A4 lino block were used. The plan was to print both lino together to have a consistent tone throughout and ensure details (e.g. the girl’s body and the lines on the bin) are properly aligned. However, it was a great challenge.

One key problem for printing two lino blocks at the same time is: speed. Ink has to applied on the second block quickly (and evenly) before ink on the first block dries out. Else, the print will appear patchy like the image attached below.

img_20161113_110623_611Other than speed, the right amount of ink has to be used.

When too little ink was used, the design can be hardly seen and all details are not visible.

img_20161110_141526_248On the other hand when too much ink is used, it is hard to apply the ink evenly on both blocks.


After several tries of test printing, I have decided not to restrict myself to white and try out other colours.

Brown on white paper


Blue on white paper

img_20161110_141635_375 Overall, the colours are nice and easily applied as compared to white ink. However the way the children are carved may not be suitable to be printed in other colours as it does not display the effect that I wish to have. For instance, the dirt on the poor children’s clothes would not be visible. Plus, the food does not stand out when coloured as shown in blue print above. Hence, the decision is to use white ink on black paper.

The two lino blocks are printed separately, aligned and pasted together afterwards. After many attempts of test printing, the best ones were chosen and used for the final piece.


Different supplies such as oil pastels and chalk were sampled.

Chalk Version

img_20161112_185240aOil Pastel Version img_20161112_185336Oil pastel appears to be a better choice hence it will be used for my final piece.

Final Piece



Colour harmonies applied in the piece include:

  • Achromatic
    • Different tone of black due the white ink
  • Monochromatic
    • Purple Yam – 2 shades of purple
    • Bananas and corn – 2 shades of yellow
    • Milk bottle cap – 2 shades of blue
    • Tomatoes – 2 shades of red
  • Analogous
    • Light and dark green – Vegetables e.g. lettuce and brussels sprouts
    • Yellow & Orange – Bananas & Corn
  • Complementary
    • Red & Green – Tomato & Vegetables
  • Triad harmony
    • Yellow, Blue & Red – Bananas, Milk bottle cap & Tomato
  • Tetrad harmony
    • Yellow, Blue, Purple & Red – Bananas, Milk bottle cap, Yam, Tomato

B&W Lino-cut Print


Trying out different textures:


Final Pieces

Story: Dumbo


Lino-cut 1: An elephant from a circus looks to the sky, prays and patiently waits for a child. She receives a baby, who is wrapped in a cloth package delivered by a stork and dropped down from the sky.

This piece uses an imbalance composition, where there is a heavier visual weightage on the left than the right. This allows the parachute package to stand out and become the focus when the audience first look at it.


Lino-cut 2: Mother elephant watches Dumbo fly for the first time. Dumbo looks scared and unconfident, but mother is smiling and looking at him with pride.

In general, both lino-prints show the following textures:

  • Wrinkles of the elephants’ skin
  • Wood grain of the wooden crate and fencing
  • Fluffy/Layering clouds
  • Stains on the old tents

Both prints also make use of a curved horizon to separate the sky and ground.

After the test printing, I realized the paint gives an inconsistent tone to the overall print. It was unexpected but the effect (slight grainy texture) was a suitable texture for my dark sky and sand ground.

Therefore, little was done to the background. Texture is mostly given to the key things (e.g. characters, circus tents) that I wish to highlight and give more emphasis to the details.

Takeaway for this Project

Tools are very important to get the best carves and effects you want. However, blunt tools also give unexpecting effects such as unclean cuts that appear to look like elephant skin wrinkles.

There is definitely room for improvement. I feel that I could have done better for this project and come up with something better.



20161003_161654-1 20161003_161730-1

Carve Process and Finalized Lino-cut:




Test Print:


Art Critique 3

Mochtar Apin – Old Woman

  • 1946, Linocuts


Initial Response

It is a portrait of an old lady. She feels sad and her eyes reveal signs of reservation/ doubt.

There are a lot details shown in this lino cut. The wrinkles on the woman’s face gives off a feeling that she had went through a lot of hardship in her life.


Lines are used to show texture and details such as her hair, wrinkles on her face and folds of her clothing. The shapes and scale of this art piece are simple and realistic. Details of the woman’s appearance look natural and lifelike.

There is a light source coming from the right. This can seen where shadows are formed on the left side of her face and body.

Lino cutting involves cutting tools with various blades to carve out shapes and marks of different size and thickness. For this lino cut, only black and white paints are used hence it is achromatic.

About the Author & Art Piece

Mochtar Apin was a pioneer of modern art and print medium in Indonesia. He was a painter, well known for model drawings and nude paintings. This lino print of an old lady is very different from his usual artwork.

This art piece is very special and meaningful because it is one of first few prints to be published in Indonesia and was made public to celebrate Indonesia’s first anniversary of independence from the Dutch colonial rule.


Art Critique 2

S Mahdar – Perjuangan di Malaya (Battle in Malaya)

  • 1951, Pencil on Paper


Initial Response

There are many people queuing up and marching towards the crowd at the center of the drawing. The bones and skulls at the side also caught my attention.


Lines are used to outline moving objects, show their movements (e.g. flowing flags) and draw their details (e.g. expressions of the people). Implied lines are also formed by the the queues of the marching soldiers.

Various shading techniques help to add texture and emotions to the drawing. For instance, hatching (thin parallel lines) is applied to the people’s faces, giving a smooth skin texture and at the same time expressing their fear, sadness and anger through a darker tone.

Atmospheric perspective is applied here where a lighter shade of black is used to show distance and atmospheric haze (slight blurry effect) for further objects. Composition in this drawing involves overlapping the elements and varying them in size. For instance, the people who are nearer are drawn bigger. There is a light source at the top of the drawing, where the area appears to be a little blurry and hazy. It is due to the exposure to light and atmospheric haze. The sketch is achromatic as only black and white is used.

The painting has a realistic scale and uses simple shapes such as small circles to represent the heads of the people in the crowd. However, certain elements are drawn in a rather abstract manner. For instance, lines of the people walking down to the crowd are drawn like chains.

In an overview, the techniques used are sketching and shading. These help to achieve the above-mentioned effects and results, adding value and texture and depth to the overall drawing.

About the Art Piece

Little information could be found about the artist and art piece. As the sketch is drawn in 1951, in my opinion, this piece is created to record the “Malayan Emergency” war which occurred in 1948 to 1960 since the timeline matches. It shows the sorrow and pain the Malayans had went through.


Art Critique 1

Lim Yew Kuan – Searching

  • 1951, Oil on Canvas


Initial Response

The first thing noticed in this painting is the barefooted man who wears a torn singlet. The way he dresses made him stand out in the crowd as the rest are well dressed and appear to be very wealthy. He looks lost and helpless, yet the people surrounding him are mocking him. To me, the candle he is holding symbolizes hope and him finding his way out of the crowd.


Lines are used to outline objects (e.g. people, clothes, car and buildings) and show their shadows. The painting has a smooth texture and is true to scale. All elements can be easily perceived as they are clear cut and sharply defined. There is a light source shining top down above the man holding the candle. Light reflection is found on his hair.

Depth is also seen as the elements overlap, vary in size and the way they are positioned. Asymmetrical balance is applied in this painting. Despite the various shapes and sizes of the elements, depth ensures balance in their perceptual weight visually. For instance, the perceptual weight of the man on the left balances with the perceptual weight of the couple on the right.

Majority of the painting uses neutral colors such as grey and brown. Dull colors are used on most of the passersby while light colors are used on the man with the candle, allowing him stand out and become the center of attention. The primary color red is only used on certain items such as car, purse and fire hydrant. All elements are monochromatic, where different shades of the same hue is applied to show the shadows.

Lim Yew Kuan is a widely known second-generation Nanyang Style artist who was born in Xiamen, China. His artworks include painting, printmaking and sculpturing.

Searching depicts a scene of a laborer walking past a group of staring, well-heeled passersby. It was one of the works created to display social reality – inspired when Lim witnessed and observed the rising social inequalities in society, social injustices during the Japanese Occupation and the social realism movement in China in the 1950s and 1960s. Searching is considered as an art that belongs to the Impressionist art movement.


Color Composition


Colors used in the background (i.e. building) are generally more neutral and achromatic while the elements in the foreground are given colors that have greater value and brightness. This will bring the focus to the items and make them stand out.

Primary colors (i.e. blue and red) are used for the vase and mask.

Secondary colors (i.e. purple and orange) are used for the two cups.

Color harmonies that are applied to the elements include:

  • Complementary: Blue and Orange
  • Analogous: Red, Purple and Orange
  • Split Complementary: Orange, Blue and Red

All elements are monochromatic through using different values and intensities of the same hue to show their design and shadows. For instance, 4 shades of red are used for the mask.

In addition, color balance and proportion is applied for the amount of orange and blue used in this cut out. The complementary conversion ratios for color balance for the respective colors is 1/3 to 2/3.

Apart from the cut outs, a layer of plastic is used over the building to represent the windows and gives off a little reflection.


Photo taken:

The Rule of Thirds is applied in this photo, where the background and elements occupy 1/3 and 2/3 of the space respectively. The colors used for the various elements in the final cut out will differ from the actual photo which has little colors. There is room for creativity where more color harmonies can be included.


A quick look at the colors chosen.



20160909_182308-1  20160916_210722-1




Black & White Composition

Story: Typical Weekday for a Working Adult


Initial Sketches:

Proj 1 Sketch2

Flow of the sketches:

  1. Looks at watch
  2. Walks down the hallway along the desks
  3. Sits at desk and starts working
  4. Boss hands file to worker
  5. Stares at her workload
  6. Brainstorms and stressed out
  7. Clock strikes 6 p.m.
  8. Grabs handbag
  9. Leaves office


Individual Cut-Outs:

The male lead drives to work. After getting off his car, he checks out the time on his watch to make sure that he is on time for work.

This image is designed in a way that his hand is situated at the centre and occupies close to 2/3 of the space to place sufficient emphasis on the wrist and his watch, and allow the current time 8:00 a.m. to stand out.

The man reaches office and drags his feet while walking to his desk. He is the earliest to report to work.

The Symmetrical Balance element is applied here to display a path that leads to his desk. Various elements (i.e. the shadows, path and his legs) are used in this image to create movement in the visual image. The path displays linear perspective, showing that he is walking from a distance. Besides that, there are shadows of his legs to bring out the feeling that a spotlight is shining on him and he is the focus in this image.

The man sits at his desk and does his work.

This image shows the front view of his desk, hence the clock is back-facing the audience. The Repetition element is used in the background to represent window blinds.

His boss hands a file the man.

Several elements in this image help to create an illusion of space. For instance, the hand and file occupy close to 2/3 of the space to appear larger and closer to the audience. The file also overlaps with the table. The curved lines show that someone is slowly approaching the man’s desk.

The man is busy clearing his work and feeling stressed out.

The man is represented in an abstract form. Lighting bolts are placed around the man’s head to indicate that he is brainstorming hard and having a headache. The striking lines also catch the attention of the audience due to the contrast with the white background. A Geometric shape is used as the border in this image too. The symmetrical border surrounds the man, giving a feeling like he is pressurized, trapped inside and has nowhere to escape.

The man takes a break and starts to daydream. He dreams about going on a vacation, travelling to somewhere and admiring the sunset at  a beach.

The Golden Ratio is applied in this image. 2/3 of the space is used to display the focus, which is the dream bubble and the workload. This creates a sense of dilemma.

The man notices that the clock strikes 6 p.m. and it is time to leave office!

The clock is displayed in a 3D form. Zigzag lines are used at the borders surrounding the clock. It brings out the excitement and liveliness of the man after knowing that work has ended. The contrast to the white background also makes the clock and time 6:00 p.m. stand out.

The man grabs his briefcase and gets ready to leave.

The Golden ratio is applied here. 2/3 of the space is used to show the focus of this image, which is the hand grabbing the briefcase handle.

The man leaves office.

Diagonal lines are used at the door to show that it is slowly closing.

Final Assignment

The main purpose of my experiment sketches is to practice drawing hand gestures via holding objects of various shapes and sizes. Different background were also drawn to find inspiration for my final piece. The different ideas revolve around nature.

Experiment Sketch 1

I have started with an easier hand gesture – holding a piece of paper.

With the hand located in the middle of the drawing, I wanted to see if it was a suitable location for landscape drawings with a path.

Experiment Sketch 2

I have drawn a person sitting at the road side while holding a plant in his/her palm. Both the hands and laps of the person were shown. I wanted to experiment the effect of involving and putting in a greater portion of the person (more than just a limb). However, it appears to be a bad idea as the person would likely be facing down, hence limiting his sight and missing a better and more comprehensive view of the foreground/middle ground/background as depicted in the sketches through the car wheels.

Experiment Sketch 3

The last experiment sketch was a rough sketch of the idea I have for my final piece. The person is holding a binoculars and exploring a jungle.

Final Piece

In this final piece, I am standing on a pathway that would lead me to a stairs that brings hikers to the peak of the mountain. Before moving on, I would like to spend some time taking a good look at the sight I am seeing, admire the nature – how the mountains overlap one another etc, and consider the effort put in by men to make the mountains safe and accessible for the hikers. I hold onto my binoculars with both hands and handle it with care. My left index finger is making some slight adjustments to the binoculars before using it.

I have never been hiking before. I often imagine how it would be standing at the peak of the mountain and admire the scenery which we will not see in a busy urban city. Binoculars would be essential to have a better view of the magnificent sight and observe all the details. With such a view, it will definitely make me appreciate nature more and put in even more effort to conserve the environment.

Bug’s Eye View

A bird! Will it step on me? Will it eat me?

Experiment Sketch 1

The thoughts of bugs remind me of the outdoors and nature. As a small sized bug, it is surrounded by tall plants. Hence for the first sketch, I have drawn grasses surrounding the bug.

Experiment Sketch 2

I wanted to explore the place further. I have imagines and drawn how it would be looking up to the sky from the ground in the garden. The second sketch consists of flowers and blades of grass standing highly above the bug. This shows the distinct difference in height and size of the plants and bug.

Final PieceFor the last piece, I have decided to go with the first sketch but making it more interesting by including a living animal i.e. bird. In the sketch, the bird is standing somewhere among the grass looking for food. The bug happens to be facing in the bird’s direction, feeling threatened as it is unsure whether it is standing in the bird’s way, will the bird step on it or worse, has it become the bird’s next meal.