Tag: Workinprogress

Motif Development

Based on my concept, “new door god”,  I planed to design a door god poster. It contains a main god in the center and several elements surrounded.


Main God

I chose to use Apple and Steve Jobs as my main visual representation. Replacing the logo to a pear shape adds a subtle pun.










Steve Jobs as fortune god(left) and general(right)



Ritual tools

Referencing from how Chinese people worship their ancestor and god, I created Apple-related sacrifices and Ritual tools.

iPhone sacrifice

Imac on a sacrifice plate

iPod attached to a candle stand

iPhones tucked on bronze incense burner








































This is the first try-out with all elements, based on traditional fortune god door poster.



Music Options

After consulting, the choice of music seems to be a problem. The current one is a bit club-sounded. It needs more strangeness and Alien sound elements.

So I decided to browse more music options, here are 5 selected scores that I think is suitable.





Before starting actual filming, I went down art friend and supermarket to purchase acrylic, food color, milk, cups and ect.



Because I couldn’t find very liquid acrylic. Instead, I have to dilute the paint by myself. And I also prepare food color to try out, as I had the experience of mixing milk and food color before and want to see which medium is better.



Oli is to create bubbles and resemble alien’s big eyes. And dish soup like a catalytic agent is able to spread out the paint and create movement.




In the end, I kind find out that food color is actually better than acrylic paint, in terms of saturation and effect. Acrylic paint intends to sink down and after dropping in dish soup, the color will not be as saturated. But acrylic paint can create minimalistic kind of effect which is also usable.




I also noticed that I need to started small with one or two color, because after a while, the all the colors started to blend and became ugly. After mixing too many colors, it become messy and ugly.


After Effects Composition

All forms are composed in After Effects by simple masking and mirroring effects. I also inverted the color of footages to match my styleframes and moodboard.



Screenshots from After Effects composition

screen-shot-2017-02-18-at-10-05-20-pm screen-shot-2017-02-18-at-10-07-36-pm




Motion Composition for testing on media wall


Next step, I will film more footages next week and try out adding some visual effects



Based on the moodboard and concept, I have created a set of styleframes that will set the style of the video. The final composition is going to be involved with more post production in After Effects. Because it is easier to control and achieve the storyline.










Presentation on Japanese Screen art


In the process of searching on Japanese screen art, I have gained a better understanding and insight in history of making traditional Japanese screens, especially Namban screens. It is so interesting to see Japanese people’s reactions from the screens when they first saw exotic foreigners. And also I was very impressed by Contemporary Japanese screens and how Japanese artists revived it and gave a new life to traditional screens. In addition, it inspired me to think about Chinese contemporary painting and how I can contribute to it, which I have little knowledge in.

Research: ADM Library I

Researching the site – ADM Library

ADM Library is specially designed to reflect the creative and artistic nature of its environment.  It houses a growing collection of resources in the visual arts, architecture, drawing, design, illustration, painting and photography and a strong collection of AV materials. It contains a cinema room, individual A/V viewing carrels, a flexible seating spaces, printing area, writable black glass wall as well as book section.



Stairs to the cinema

Mainly ADM students visit ADM Library for reading books and magazines, doing assignments, relaxing and printing services.




Normally, most of students will sit at white table area. They can read or use their own laptops there. Seldom people really interact with others, rather doing their own work.

And I also noticed only few people would use A/V viewing carrels. Maybe the place is not comfortable, like a computer lab, compared to Hive’s library. However, people likes to sleep in the library also in the corner. Because library is a quiet and comfortable place, students like to spend whole day there.

Screen Shot 2016-03-21 at 11.19.57 AM




Interestingly, there are a few of very large glasses and empty spaces which I could experiment with.





Developing Idea

Initial impression

ADM Library is well equipped with lots research resources and convenient for studying. Sometimes we focus on a project attentively without even knowing a few hours already has past, as if time in library is faster than outside. It inspired me to do a installation about time to let audience experience the idea of time change in library. the focus could be on faster time or timeless experience.

I did some research on history of timekeeping device. It is quite interesting that how ancient people used water and candle to calculate time. And timekeeping devices changed our world where all human activities refer to it.

My initial idea is to build several water timer devices, ranging from 15mins to 1 hour. People can grab any of them for testing and timing their study time.


Another idea struck me in the process is people like to sleeping in ADM Library. I wanted to draw attention on and amplify this issue. Mainly because students don’t get enough sleep or stress out from the school works. So plan A is to lay a few sleeping bags on the big empty area’s floor and put assignment papers or coffee cups and so forth around them. Plan B is to put a figure in only cloth form on a chair. In front of him is a laptop and all rubbishes he consumes.




Point of View


 Works in a presentation layout




Ideas based on subject ‘Bird’




It is a common phenomena that birds always shit on the car surface in an outdoor car park. Because it is normally surrounded by trees, of which branches birds like to rest and build nests on. The front window of the car is chosen to be the birds’ target, which car owners always hate most. Birds fly diagonally and drop the bomb, under a red son, which creates a sense of war tension.



Different views from car’s inside to outside.




It was inspired by a movie called “The Birds” by Alfred Hitchcock.It focuses on a series of sudden and unexplained violent bird attacks on the people. Hitchcock is a film director and “The Master of Suspense”. He pioneered many elements of the suspense and psychological thriller genres, like Psycho, Rear Window and Vertigo. The main actress is formed by the birds’ silhouettes from solid black to the scattered shadows, indicating the struggle and harassment are all around and it’s impossible to escape.



Tryout of different approaches to define horror.






H5N1 is a highly pathogenic avian (bird) flu virus, occurring naturally among wild aquatic birds worldwide. Though these virus normally infect domestic poultry and other bird and animal species, it becomes severely deadly when infection occurs in human. Bird flu viruses can happen when enough virus gets into a person’s eyes, nose or mouth, or is inhaled. Medical mask and glasses indicate how dangerous H5N1 is and reflection of aggressive flying birds hints the reason of it.  Black and white and high contrast support the anxious atmosphere overall.







Chickens and birds are similar species and look alike overall, especially both of them having two wings.  Ironically, only birds have an ability to fly, which make them more advanced and supreme, comparing to chickens. The idea of flying ability parallels to a supernatural power that superman got. The bird is represented in a symbol of superman, rising up to the sky like God. Yellow light rays draw your eyes to the main subject matter which is in the center.


Sketches of super bird symbol.






Before the release of a new Mac OS X operating system, an animal always come to eyes first, dating back to the first generation. Various types of animals, like tiger, snow leopard, lion and mountain lion have been used as its symbols. It is relatable and possible that Apple will view and plan bird as their potential mascot for next generation of Mac OS X. The overall composition resembles the real Mac OS X releasing page where a bird is super imposed, in an iMac.


Tryout of different layouts of Apple website.




Kids born in the 2000s indeed can be referred to a digital generation. It is a period that smartphones and mobile devices comprehensively occupied our life.A video game called ‘Angry Bird’ has attracted millions of people, especially little kids, after first release in 2009. It is a sarcasm that children’s perspective can be manipulated by high-tech product, so in their eyes, real birds should look the same as angry birds that also live in nature.



Angry bird in different types of birds’ form.



Inspired by a well-known American graphic designer Saul Bass, who did lots of title designs for film, as well as ‘Naive’ illustration style, which focuses on simple geometrical shapes to convey messages. 


I think this project really trained us how to view things in a special perspective as well as allowed me to explore new design approach, using lesser graphical elements to convey messages. Also design is based on the experience. The broader you know, the better and maturer your design is. So sometimes we should take a step out of design and learn other aspects of knowledge.


Research Essay – Chinese Tomb Art (Terra-cotta Army)


Chinese Tomb Art reflects how ancient Chinese approach death and how they live. Thorough out different dynasties, people believed death is an extension of life, but in a spiritual form. So some daily comforts of their past life, such as servants, guards, charioteers, horses, drinking vessels are provided for them in the after life. Today, as some important tombs have been excavated, like recent discovery of Marquis of Haihun’s tomb, we are able to study those burial objects in order to reveal the insight of ancient Chinese society. Among the many remarkable archaeological excavations in China, the most extraordinary one is the discovery of the terra-cotta army. It was built for the China’s first Emperor, Qin Shihuangdi, who conquered six other states and unified the realm in 221 B.C. It is estimated that there are more than seven thousand terra-cotta warriors been buried.[2] The figures are life-size and originally painted with vibrant colors, which make them look lifelike and unique. Comparing with two kneeling archers in necropolis, it is noticeable that they almost look the same overall. However, it is noticeable that each of them have distinguishable features, like different facial expressions and various sizes of legs. Terra-cotta army reflects a standardizing society with a capability of mass production in Qin Dynasty, through its production.



Figure 1


Figure 2



The overall measurement and almost identical gesture of the two archers prove that they were made by following a standardized system. According to Lothar Lederrose, the height of them is almost the same of 122cm. The length of the feet varies from 25cm to 29cm, the circumference of the torsos from 85 to 107 centimeters and the length of faces from 19 to 20 centimeters.[3] It is believed that ancient Chinese using molding technique to standardize overall size and speed up the making process. The hands gestures of both also indicate they were holding same weapons, which later archaeologists identified are crossbows. But only the bronze trigger, containing four parts, survived today. The four mechanical parts are cast precisely to fit together perfectly. “The tolerance for error lies within fractions of a millimeter.”[4] When comparing with thousands of other bronze triggers in all pits, they are all identical in measurement, which proves that the triggers are actually interchangeable. It is more efficient during the war that archers could exchange the broken parts to a workable one in a very short time. Two terra-cotta figures are both carved with small inscriptions on unnoticeable parts of body, which indicates who made them. Whoever made a mistake or created the parts in incorrect size will get punished strictly according to Qin’s law. Inscription serves as quality control to make sure the uniformity in overall.



Relics of crossbow


Bronze trigger mechanism


In spite of uniformity, the army still conveys an overall impression of extraordinary variety.[5] Mass production plays an essential part in making every terra-cotta figure look unique and individualistic. Comparing left legs from two figures, figure 1‘s looks bloated and similar to a drainage pipe used in the necropolis and under the Qin palace, while left leg of figure 2 is slimmer and straighter. The inscriptions on each figure indicate there are made by different groups of people. Inscription beginning with the character “gong” and in a stamp form means he is a master of craftsmanship from state factories and set standards of quality. Whereas, a place-name, capital Xianyang, in front of the name, Ke and without stamp signifies he is an ordinary worker from local workshops. According to Lothar Ledderose, in total there were a thousand of masters and each of them controlled a ten-man team.[6] The usage of inscription systems proves that a large of number of workforce made this big project possible. Another difference lies on the angels of heads, hands and legs. For instance, the head of figure 1 is facing straight toward the front. However, the head of figure 2 is slightly titling left. And figure 1 is showing the full back of left hand. Whereas, figure 2’s left hand is titling almost 45 degrees. After scanning the broken parts, archaeologists believe each of the figures normally consists of seven major parts: a plinth, the feet, the legs, the torsos, the arms, the hands, and the head, of which each varies in size and style. Eight types of heads, two types of feet, eight types of torso and so forth, with each type having three subtypes were identified. With a large number of different combinations, it is doubtless that over 7,000 terra-cotta warriors look different and unique. Further more, their facial appearances differ from one another. Figure 1 has a lager pair of eyes, and thicker eyebrows, while figure 2 has frowning stokes on forehead and got a sharper nose and denser mustache. It is a result of imperfect handmade process that workers had to stick different parts with wet clay and add another carving texture by hand. Imperfection made by massive workforce indeed caused every figure lifelike and individualistic.



The discover of Qin Shihuangdi’s terra-cotta warriors restores an ancient model of Qin society and impresses us that ancient Chinese were capable of applying complex systems of mass production to assemble extraordinary works through a standardized society. And these systems have deeply influenced how Chinese think and behave till now.



Words count: 931


[1] “House Model.”

[2] “Unification of China”

[3] Ledderose, Ten Thousand Things, 72.

[4] Ledderose, Ten Thousand Things, 60.

[5] Ledderose, Ten Thousand Things, 72.

[6] Ledderose, Ten Thousand Things, 70.