2D Project 2: Forrest Gump (Process Pt. 1)

For this project, we were tasked to pick four movie quotes and create visual narratives that expresses each quote.

The following are the initial quotes I have chosen:

  • “Mankind was born on Earth … it was never meant to die here.” – Interstellar (2014)
  • “T-Rex doesn’t want to be fed. He wants to hunt.” – Jurassic Park (1993)
  • “They like to get the landmarks.” – Independence Day: Resurgence (2016)
  • “Good lord, what is it about women with little hats?” – The Imitation Game (2014)

“Mankind was born on Earth … it was never meant to die here.” – Interstellar (2014)

I wanted to go for a somewhat apocalyptic scene, showing dangerous scenarios such as a nuclear power plant explosion and war planes dropping bombs, the crop field was inspired from the movie, which was set in a farm where the crops were infected with blight, threatening mankind’s survival. The planet represents the supposed future home of mankind.

The first draft was too plain and too ‘on the nose’.

Draft 1

I did a few more drafts, with the addition of the silhouette of a man,  his ‘praying pose’ representing the impending death of mankind and him seeking redemption.

Draft 2

The starry night sky implies that mankind will one day move to another planet.

Draft 3

Using the silhouette as the canvas.

Draft 4

Joy had suggested to change some of the objects to interpretations instead, for example, a burning cigarette could represent the chimneys of power plants, both contributing to air pollution. The following are interpretations I have included:

  • Chimneys of the power plant replaced by cigarettes, both contribute to air pollution.
  • War planes dropping trash bags, similar to bombs, both destroy the land in their own way.
  • Soldiers wielding axes, which kill trees like how guns kill people.

However, I had to work on the composition as there was no focal point, and the triangle formed in the middle seemed very awkward.

Draft 5

An improvement on the composition, however, I felt that I could add something more to the sky.

Draft 6.1

When I added the clouds, it seemed that they could merge with the smoke coming out from the chimneys!

Draft 6.2

With the ‘ clouds’ added, I tweaked the composition, applying the rule of thirds (which I wondered why I didn’t use in the first place).

Draft 6.3

Below is the final composition for this quote.

Draft 6.4 – Final Draft

Halftone applied, this will be the image I will be using for my tote bag.

Final image with halftone for silk screening


“T-Rex doesn’t want to be fed. He wants to hunt.” – Jurassic Park (1993)

For my first draft, I applied anthropomorphism to T-Rex, he is rejecting the food in front of him, implying that he doesn’t want to be fed and wants to hunt for his own food. Joy mentioned it was too straightforward, and I should try not to use any of the elements in the quote, for example, I could change T-Rex to something else.

Draft 1

For my second draft, I was inspired by the saying of “Enjoying the thrill of the chase”, which Joy gave me for an example. I have depicted a man (T-rex), wooing (wants to hunt) a girl, but the girl is rejecting him (but he is likes when they play hard to get, i.e he doesn’t want to be fed).

Draft 2

For the third draft, I felt that the “he doesn’t want to be fed” part was not clear enough, hence, I made him pushing another woman away who appears to be pleading for his approval, i.e. he doesn’t want free ‘meals’ coming his way.

Draft 3

“They like to get the landmarks.” – Independence Day: Resurgence (2016)

Just like in the movie and what this quote represents, I portrayed aliens destroying some of the world’s iconic landmarks.

Draft 1

Another way of interpreting this quote will be showing tourists ‘targeting’ landmarks for selfies.

Draft 2

However, I might be scrapping this quote as I am not too pleased with the results.

“Good lord, what is it about women with little hats?” – The Imitation Game (2014)

Honestly, I was focusing on the first two quotes and just put together something for the third and fourth quotes. I will be working on another two quotes in the following weeks, but first, let me take a sel-

Poorly-done draft

Project 2: The Subverted Object

For this project, we were assigned an object and we had to produce a series of images that captured the object’s denoted and connoted meaning.

Task 1 – Denotation

For Task 1, I captured the object’s physical attributes, where the object is commonly seen, and the practical function of the object. I paid more attention to the camera angle and composition of the fork, as well as keeping the background interesting, but not so much as to distract the audience from the object in focus.

This image focuses on the fork’s shape and form, mostly on the tines. The background of wood and plants is a contrast with the fork’s hard metallic structure.

Task 1 – 01

The fork in its ‘natural habitat’. A portrait shot as opposed to a landscape shot in order to capture the entire length of the fork in the compartment. A touch of green in the background to add colour and balance out the dull greyish colours.

Task 1 – 02

The basic functionality of a fork. In Asia, we tend to use chopsticks for noodles, while it is the Western culture that uses forks.  I also wanted to portray a more classy dish, and therefore went for spaghetti. 

Task 1 – 03

Task 2 – Connotation

For Task 2, I subverted the object’s meaning, showing what it is not meant to be used for, and touching on the object’s cultural meaning.

You obviously don’t drink soup with a fork. I made the soup in the bowl too watery and had to dip the fork in another bowl of thicker soup to make the soup on the fork more thick and slimy. I took quite some time with this shot, as I was trying to recreate the camera angle I envisioned in my sketch.

Task 2 – 01

The fork as a murder weapon. There were too many colours going on in the original image, and the background was predominantly orange, I had to convert the image to grayscale and blur the background, leaving the fork unblurred in the foreground and the red of the blood.

Task 2 – 02

In order to create the burning fork, I had to wrap cotton wool around the tines, applied a little bit of thinner, and light it up. I had initially wanted to photoshop an image of a flame onto a fork but that would defeat the purpose of a photography project, and the blending of the flame and fork would probably not look as good.

Task 2 – 03

Task 3 – Text and Image

For Task 3, we were to give one of the images from the above tasks a title, and have it serve to clarify or emphasize something in the image, or to expand or explain the significance of the image. I chose one of the pictures of the object’s subverted meaning as I wanted my title to be more engaging for the audience and not tell them what they already see.

The image I chose for my poster was a person scooping soup with a fork, accompanied by the title “Alzheimer’s, Prevention starts with you.” This poster aims to show us the intellectual and behavioural disabilities caused by Alzheimer’s, and tells the audience that it can be prevented and that they themselves have the ability to prevent it.

However, as Wen Lei pointed out, replacing ‘Prevention starts with you’ with for example, ‘This is what Mary sees everyday’ would have had a stronger impact as it engages the audience more emotionally.

A2 Poster

Final Layout for Critique

The layout of my printed images on the wall for critique during class.

Final Layout for Critique

Key Concepts & Ideas

Below are the initial sketches I made before I started on the project. As shown, I managed to use four of my initial ideas for my final six images. I have also included some of the inspirations I have gotten for a couple of my images.

Initial sketch of ideas

For this image, I was inspired by an IKEA breakfast menu, where they had the food on one side and the text on the other, against a simple background.

Task 1 – 03
IKEA Breakfast –


For this image, I was inspired by how angry mobs in the past would bring along torches and pitchforks, and hence I decided to combine the two, and have a hand holding the ‘pitchfork’ up high like an angry mob would. I shot it in a pitch black background to direct the audience’s focus solely on the burning fork, inspired by a poster image from Hell’s Kitchen.

Task 2 – 03
The Simpsons –
Hell’s KItchen –


4D Exercise 1: Scale & Framing

For this exercise, we had 15 minutes to create 12 shots of our partner using a DSLR camera, experimenting with various shot scales and framing angles. After which, we were required to select three that best depicted our partner.

Medium Shot

This shot provides a view of the background, and it also shows the subject’s body language as well as his facial expression. It gives a general overview of how the subject and environment is interacting with one another.

High-angle Wide Shot

A high angle shot generally makes a subject seem vulnerable and powerless, however, in this case, as the high angle shot is accompanied by a wide shot, with the subject looking down the hill, it makes the subject more powerful and overwhelming, as if he is in control of the environment around him.

Close-up Shot

This shot captures the overall emotion of the subject, the blurred background gives the audience a sense of where the subject it, but does not distract the audience as it draws their attention on the subject’s facial expression instead.

2D Project 1 : My Line in Emo (Final Project)

The aim of this project is to visually convey six different emotions by exploring expressive mark making through the use of traditional tools.


Project 1 – My Line is Emo




An extremely strong reaction of anger, shock, or indignation.


Portrayed by sharp and crisp lines swooshing by in a swift manner. When one is outraged, he would go out of control and unleash his fury in all directions, similarly, the lines seem to be flying in random directions as if in a pit of rage. The trails of ink give the lines a sense of movement and the direction they are moving in, making them look more dynamic in nature. The thick trails of ink also gives a contrast to the more thinner lines.


Created by chopping satay sticks dipped in Chinese ink onto paper. Trails of ink are created by simply dragging the satay sticks across the paper.



A feeling of great happiness and triumph.


For happiness, I imagined little children playing in a playground, and therefore it inspired me to portray the emotion as little sprites, who are known to be playful creatures in fictional tales, jovially whizzing through the air. The trail the sprites leave behind creates a sense of movement and direction. The angle of which the sprites are facing creates a sense of randomness as they are not bouncing in sync but at their own pace, making them energetic and full of life.


Created by dragging a scrunched up ball of paper dipped in Chinese and monoprint ink across the surface. I had to make sure there wasn’t too much ink on the ball of paper or else the ink trails will be too concentrated and the texture wouldn’t show.



Severe mental or physical pain or suffering.


The texture immediately reminded me of the sky from ‘The Starry Night’ by Vincent van Gogh. More specifically, I once heard Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata, which is a slow and sad piano piece, in a video online with this painting as the background. The rough and uneven texture gives a feel of desolation, the way the ink trails in one specific direction and amplitude gives it a sense of lifelessness, reflecting pain and suffering.


Created by dragging charcoal dipped in Chinese ink across the paper. The characteristic of the charcoal gives the print a rough texture while the Chinese ink smoothens it out and blends the two.



An unpleasant emotion caused by the threat of danger, pain, or harm.


With sharp and jagged elements from the top and bottom closing onto each other, creating little negative space, there is a sense of claustrophobia and uneasiness in this print. The more rough and faded ink give it texture and makes the silhouette of the jagged elements less crisp and clean, and also reduces the negative space in between, creating a greater sense of melancholy.


Created by dipping the edge of a piece of cardboard in Chinese ink and monoprint ink. The more watery Chinese ink gives a more textureless result and more crisp lines, while the thicker monoprint ink gives more texture, creating a rough trail of ink that bleeds out.



An overpowering wonder or surprise.


I portrayed this emotion by having a dense vertical disturbance suddenly interrupting the steady flow of horizontal lines. It shows how something smooth sailing can turn into a nightmare in an instant due to an external force.


Created by dragging a scrunched up ball of newsprint dipped in monoprint ink across the surface.



A great interest and pleasure in something or someone.


The lack of negative space gives a sense of darkness, with small specks of light whirling around like candlelights and also to give the scene a sense of movement. I wanted to make this an intimate environment with two ‘lovers’ in a dimly lit space. It also looks like an aerial shot where the camera pulls out up into the sky during a kissing scene.


Created by painting with a paintbrush. I did not use too much ink at once as I wanted more control so as to be able to leave tiny areas unpainted. The more narrow area around the two central elements area painted using the end of the paintbrush.


Scene from Ratatouille


Process Parts 1 and 2 can be viewed in the links below:

2D Project 1: My Line is Emo (Process Pt.1)

2D Project 1: My Line is Emo (Process Pt.2)


2D Project 1: My Line is Emo (Process Pt.2)

Process – Part 2

Before the start of this week’s class, I did several different prints during my spare time. They turned out quite well and I saw potential in some of them for my final submission.

Dripping ‘tears’
Karate Chop!
Exploring different methods of using satay sticks
Results of the various prints

During the consultation with Joy in class, she suggested that I try using different inks, such as Chinese ink, to replicate those prints that I have made previously which I saw potential in. She also suggested making the prints much bigger so that I have more freedom to choose which parts looked better.

More upsizing, using different inks.

After upsizing a few, I actually found that the previous smaller versions of the prints looked better, it was probably because the patterns looked too huge when placed in the viewfinder I created, which was the size our final ‘strips’ were supposed to be. It didn’t work out, but at least I tried it.

Below are four prints that I found ‘successful’ in displaying some of the emotions.

Joy – More towards cheerfulness and joviality, this print looks like little sprites playfully whizzing through the air.

Anger – Swords swooshing through the air with the blood of those killed trailing along…

Fear – A sense of uneasiness, this looks like a cave where stalagmites and stalactites are closing in on you, the minimal negative space makes it look claustrophobic.

Sadness – Melancholy, this print immediately reminded me of ‘The Starry Night’ by Vincent van Gogh. More specifically, I once heard Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata in a video online with this painting as the backdrop. You can listen to it here hahaha –  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iVfPt8jgWOY





There is still ink in my fingernails.

4D Project 1: Picture Story – Curating Self


Our first project was to study how manipulative techniques such as framing, cropping, subject distance, and vantage point can affect the audience’s perception and interpretation of an image.

Task 1: Me

I wanted to show that I have a deep connection with the rainforest, from using the foliage as cover, getting comfortable taking a nap on the forest floor, and enjoying the long walks under the canopy.

Me – 1
Me – 2
Me – 3

Task 2: Object

The Swiss Army Knife which has been with me ever since I enlisted, I have used it mainly to dig out camouflage cream from my fingernails, and to carve walking sticks that have helped me greatly when I was trekking through the rainforests and climbing the mountains of Brunei. Unfortunately, it did not have a chance to slaughter any kind of animal.

Object – 1
Object – 2
Object – 3

Task 3: My World

My home for most of my cadet life, the rainforest brings back both fond and painful memories, from the good times I shared training and ‘camping out’ with my buddies, and the not-so-good times of tough training and mosquito bites. In order to capture a sense of how vast the forest is around me, I used mainly wide angle and long shots.

World – 1
World – 2
World – 3
World – 4

Final Presentation

Final layout of my shots for Class Critique.

I really enjoyed my time training in the rainforests when I was in the army, both in Singapore and during overseas training, doing this project made me reminisce those good old days.

The main concept around my project was to ‘Go Green’, to put on the uniform, apply camouflage cream on my face and head straight into the rainforest. The idea for my photo series was to make it look as if it was a documentation of a soldier trekking through a jungle.

As everything was mostly green, and so was I, I had to find a way to make the subject (me) stand out, which was why the rule of thirds was heavily emphasized in alot of my photos. I also used the idea of foreground, mid-ground, and background elements to give a better sense of depth of the foliage around me.

Research and References

I was inspired by the opening scene of Dawn of the Planet of the Apes for one of my shots, an extreme close up of the subject’s eyes. The mouth is excluded so the audience’s attention is focused solely on the eyes. This was the first shot that immediately came to mind when we were first briefed on the project.

Screenshot from the opening scene of ‘Dawn of the Planet of the Apes’