Monthly Archives: March 2018

ZINE: Content Research (Tiong Bahru)

In the ‘Zine’ – Tiong Bahru edition, I will be dividing the 8 pages into 3 main sections

1 – On birds singing tradition

2 – What’s a must try in Tiong Bahru

3 – Wall of fame for CATS

I will now present my research on the above 3 topics I have narrowed down to focus on.

Tiong Bahru Bird Singing

Yes, there are indeed many places locally where you can find bird singing corners. Some examples are Serangoon North Avenue 1, Tanglin Halt, Ang Mo Kio Avenue 10 and Bukit Purmei. Lo and behold, Tiong Bahru is the OG (original gangster) of this trade. It is the oldest and the first ever “Bird Arena” in Singapore.

In the past couple of years, many bird-lovers would gather at this spot bright and early, to admire all the exotic, beautiful birds sitting in their antique cages. One interesting fact is that it all started from an owner of a Kopitiam (coffee shop), with all intention to attract more business. But it led to more than just a business antic, it becomes a tradition worth preserving.

Credit: The Straits Time

Tiong Bahru bird corner was noticed by a Dutch reporter, who wrote about it in the late eighties. It was when this corner gained recognition, attracting even more tourists and reporters far and wide! Eventually, Dutch sponsor numbered hooks to facilitate more birds singing competition in the area. I find it relatively interesting since these are areas I would never have noticed even if I happen to pass by. The failure to realise its significance would truly be a waste! So glad I managed to dig out some of the forgotten treasures of Tiong Bahru.


Interesting Food Finds (TOP 3)

What’s good in Tiong Bahru, you ask? Come, let me show you!

Pastries and Coffees? They have Tiong Bahru Bakery.

I was a huge sceptic of this place initially. I thought it would just be another cafe that is totally overhyped since it is always buzzing with people and the cafe always seem to be on full house. I had my first try on their original croissant, accompanied by a warm cup cappuccino – Boy was I wrong to assume it would just taste like flour and sugar. It was on a whole new level of mind-blowingness!

I knew I had to feature this in my Eatbook spread! Light, buttery crisp on the outside, warm and soft on the inside – An excellent balance of sweet and savoury.


For a main, if you’re tight on a budget, fret not for there is Tiong Bahru Food Centre. For this section, there are a couple of recommendations –

Like Jian Bo Chwee Kueh, 238 Coffee, Ru Yi Vegetarian Bee Hoon and Tiong Bahru Teochew Kuehs. I’ll insert some pictures below!

Credits: Danielfooddiary


Wall of Fame for Cats

YES! You heard it right, its Cats we’re talking about. Hmm, what about stray cats right? They are everywhere, isn’t it? Well, let me introduce you to the hidden gems of Tiong Bahru – It’s their cats.

The name star of today’s research is Bob the stray. He even has his very own Facebook page! (Click to find out more okay! I promise he is super chubby and cute) The page is still very much active now, and the latest update was made on March 25, 2018! You can see how much love he is showered with.

And this is the backstory of Bob: Click Here

Besides Bob the star, there are a couple of extraordinary places where we find traces of cats. One example is Books Actually. This is a local bookshop WITH FELINES.

How often do you come across bookstores with cats? Here’s the funny thing. Sometimes when the shopkeepers are out, they leave their cats to tend the store. How amusing. I bet they keep out little mousey thieves!

Read their interview Here!

Another super funky fact: They even did casting calls for the cutest cats in Singapore, and one of our fellow Tiong Bahru residence made it! Here’s a video I found:

A Purrrfect Singapore Audition

It's not just people that paint the colours of Singapore, but also our many neighbourhood felines. Which kitty will emerge as the most legendary of them all? #YourSingapore #Cat

Posted by VisitSingapore on Wednesday, 13 January 2016

These will be my area of focus for the content of Zine, bringing very relatable and closer to hearts topics to you as a producer of my first location magazine spread! Thank you for reading!

Next up: Research on Layout Style 😉




Bird Singing Corners in Singapore

Tiong Bahru Bird Singing Corner

Alter Ego – Colour Ghost

In this 1 minute short clip, I am a (rainbow) Ghost.

What’s so great about being a ghost, you ask? Ghosts are just a figment of the imagination, yes. But think about it, whats not great about not having any responsibilities? Have no care in the world, and you can float around happy and be nonchalant. Studies? Relationships? Nawww, a happy ghost won’t have time for that.

Unlike living things, ghosts are light as air. The only downside will probably be… that we’d cease to exist if humans don’t believe in us.

And who’s our greatest predator? GHOST HUNTERS. O’MAN.

Angry Women – Review

Annie Abrahams is a Dutch performance artist/curator who uses different means of communication via the online platform to examine and test out the potential and boundaries of social communication between humans regardless of distance or time zone differences. One of the perks of mass media is that it warrants interconnectivity, uniting people from all over the globe to come together and perform a task within just matter of seconds.

Project Angry Women (2012) is a live performance broadcast constructed by Abrahams. This piece of work rationalizes over the issue on time and space, an expression focused on women. This emotional, melodramatic experiment is conducted on females across the continent, streamed over the internet webcam with Abrahams facilitating the execution. I would describe it as a form of psychological relieve for the participants. Cultural barriers are knocked down, as women expressed themselves through sounds (e.g. screams, smiles, shrieks) while being live at the same time. Further on in Abrahams experiment, project Angry Man is produced, then subsequently a mixed gender version comes through. Her works aim to reinforce and unfold human behaviours, the side most people find most vulnerable to reveal as we subconsciously try to portray our best sides.

Though one of the cons of multimedia is that it homogenizes culture. I feel that with the availability of internet access, the entire world is acquainting with the same cultural influence, and this way, people will be going after trends. Essentially, we will all be under the same fixated dogma, eventually losing our own essence and uniqueness in time. Our sense of identity will be very much diluted and watered down to what is popular and not factors like what makes us different.

Another aspect which we had discussed over class time – how being on the second/third space takes our attention away during gatherings with friends/family. I do agree to a huge extent how our addiction can potentially overtake interpersonal connection. As much as the fact that social media can take us places, it disconnects us with the present, especially people who are around us physically.

Face Book, Literally

Statistics indicated that Facebook is one of the most used social media platforms in the world, even so in recent years. In sync with the outburst of modern technologies, app creators seized the opportunity to milk the market. Over billions of accounts are created online. A platform like Facebook, for example, is utilized to enhance and add colours to life.  Of disadvantages and risks, Face to Facebook, initiated by Paolo Cirio and Alessandro Ludovico, is an installation that place accent on the societal idea of “privacy” and how it is one of the least concerned and most neglected aspects, both at the same time.

While the whole idea of social connectedness brings people together regardless the distance, does it truly bring about more benefits than harm? Writer D.E. Wittkower discussed in his writing on the critic of Facebook as a social media platform.

He said, “Is it important? Is it meaningful? We would only ask these questions if we view the status update from the outside as if Facebook were a television. But the feed is not a broadcast. The feed is our friends.”

It can be seen that he digresses to the negative rationale behind the campaign set up by both Paolo and Alessandro. It seems that Wittkower views the feed as a channel for people to build and foster strong bonds and establish relationships. In this scenario, he fully supports being in the state of social connectedness, in which the usability and functions (news feed) of Facebook succours to draw a parallel with the people you are connected with.

On a hindsight, Face to Facebook gnaws on the negative impact of social media, and how everyone has got an act – a duo persona, both online and offline. While I feel that disclosure of general information is still acceptable, confidential information that can be intrusive and used against us, ought to be communicated discreetly in a careful and prudent modus operand.

A video on how a woman deals with the power social media brings about, through her anxieties.

Model Making: Mobile Phone Dock



These are some of the existing speakers in the market which inspired me greatly – In terms of the overall structure, material built, and functions/aesthetic features:

Love how there is a sense of lightness and minimalism employed in the above design. Chic and simple.

Personally, I love anything that has a hint of wood. It makes the product look very Scandinavian-ish. This is the style direction which I am very keen with. As pitched, the general appearance of my docked speaker will have a hint of transparency to highlight the idea of “weightlessness”, and wood to balance out the aesthetics.


Planning: Sketches


Execution: Foam Shaving/Reshaping

Making use of a piece of freshly cut foam, I started by estimating the amount of grove I want on the edge of my docked speaker. Then, I cut and stick on cardboard onto my foam (roughly making sure they are of the same angle).

Then, I measure the length of my an iPhone and an Android, so that both phones could fit into the pocket of the speaker properly. Then all the diggings and carvings began. As seen from the picture above, the sides of the foam were nicely trimmed and filed down.

At this stage, it was reviewed that the thickness of the speaker was not optimal, causing it to lack a touch of modernism. So I went ahead to trim down the width of my foam – which got me to my final step!

End Result:


Introducing: iSPAMP Version 0.1

This is a duo function product, which consists of a lamp and a working speaker. Hence it serves an additional purpose of a light source which is the Unique Selling Point (USP) of this product. The holes on the prototype help light to penetrate through.


The bamboo speaker. Inspired by nature, I wanted to design a speaker that has a natural amplifier quality. From the shape of a bamboo, it has a hollow interior, which in this case allows sound to travel hence serves the purpose of a speaker.


Planning: Sketches


End Result: iSPAMP Bamboo Speaker

Comes with light up function! Serves the purpose of both a night lamp and a phone speaker. Double edge sword okay, so grab yours now.