To look at the comments I’ve posted, they’re up there right beside “About”.

I really can’t put this any better, so…

From http://www.salon.com/people/bc/1999/10/05/gehry/index.html,

By Karen Templer

“When everybody else is ready for the ending, I’m just ready to begin,” Frank Gehry once wrote. “It’s been the story of my life.” And so it would seem.

The Pritzker Prize — commonly referred to as “the Nobel of architecture” — is the industry’s loftiest recognition. It’s a lifetime achievement award, granted to a living architect whose body of work represents a superlative contribution to the field. Gehry received it in 1989, two years before the release of the frenzy-inducing Gehry Collection, an innovative line of furniture, and nearly a decade before the unveiling of his titanium masterpiece, the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, the Basque capital of Spain.


In describing Gehry’s “buildings” there’s a tendency to employ art terms — sculpture, collage, installation, assemblage — because “building” just doesn’t cover it. Gehry’s love of architecture is about the process: the conceptualizing and mark-making and model-building, and that’s what comes across in the final results. It’s a rare story about Gehry’s work that isn’t accompanied by his wildly gestural sketches in place of the usual rigid, mathematical plans. The sketches are beguiling in their seeming lack of representation of anything other than the mysteries of Gehry’s own imagination. Without the corresponding photos of the finished product, many would be indiscernible as buildings.”

I’ve never been to the Walt Disney Concert Hall, but I sure would like to someday. It seems really interesting.

If I ever become an architect someday, I’d like to follow in the footsteps of Frank Gehry. Really. His works are absolutely amazing. He’s won so many awards, designed so many buildings and structures… which aspiring architect wouldn’t dream of being him?

His works are literally a world apart from almost every other architect’s. His structures’ forms do not follow their functions at all. This is what I like most about his works. They’re like a breath of fresh air amidst the dull rectangular buildings of the citiscape.

I really like his deviation from conventional building forms. His utter disregard for geometric shapes somehow makes me feel euphoric. (This may be due to my inherent hatred for basic geometric shapes in architecture.)

His works make me realise that form does not always follow function. This is essential if we want to break away from all the conventional designs. I think I’m a bit biased against functional buildings. Living in Singapore all these years has made me a bit abhorrent of cubist/rectangular/geometric buildings that uphold the ideal of “form follows function”. If I ever design a building/structure I would make sure to keep this in mind. (I plan to design some stuff in the holidays… perhaps I’d design something similar in terms of concept?)

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Title: Voodoo doll

Medium: Um… Yarn and knitting needles

Size: 15 x 14 x 5.5 cm (Length x arm-span x diameter of head)

Date: June 2009

Time taken: Ohhh. I think around… 1 week? Like 168 hours?

I knitted the voodoo doll mainly because I wanted a real life reference for my coursework. I think I’ve mentioned the purpose of knitting it earlier somewhere. Ah, here: CLICK ME!

Slightly more macabre stuff

For these two works, the emphasis was on investigating how the density of ink affected the mood and atmosphere of the painting. By letting the ink dry successively, a slightly mottled effect was achieved. The problem of drawing smoke with pen was resolved; I realised that india ink washes were exceptionally good for drawing smoke and clouds. Working “wet on wet” with ink was also an interesting experience. The running of the ink is not something that can be controlled easily, so it was doubly interesting as the effects achieved at one sitting might not be able to be reproduced at a second sitting.

Both works are representational of the grim future that we would face should we continue to destroy the environment.

Prep016

 

Prep017

Prep018

 

Prep019

Title: Apocalypse 1

Medium: India Ink

Size: Around A2

Date: Sep 2009

Time taken: 3 hours

Prep020

 

Prep021

 

Prep022

Title: Apocalypse 2

Medium: India ink

Size: Around A2

Date: Sep 2009

Time taken: 3 hours

In the future, I would consider controlling the amount of water used. While a lot of water can make the ink run in mesmerising and unfathomable patterns, too much water would make the paper warp too much. I would consider using a lighter touch when drawing in the pen lines as too great a pressure would cause an indent on the paper.

People

For the following studies, I wanted to focus on the features of the children’s faces, as well as the way the fabric behaves. I also wanted to investigate the various postures that children tend to take when they are playing. Their musculature was also taken into account.

Prep029

Title: Girl manipulating soccer ball

Medium: Pencil

Size: 10 x 18 cm

Date: Jul 2009

Time taken: 1 hour

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Prep030

Title: Boy blowing bubbles

Medium: Pen

Size: 21 x 15 cm

Date: Jul 2009

Time taken: 50 min

Miscellaneous/Investigations

“Herein lies a collection of paintings, sketches and drawings that do not belong to any other post.”

Prep009

Title: Towards hope and despair

Medium: Watercolour

Size: 39 x 18 cm

Date: Mar 2009

Time taken: 2 hours

For this I wanted to explore how clouds and smoke could add another element to a painting. In this case I made the smoke from the factories in the distance form a vague indistinct figure that hovers ominously over the little girl running to her father at the top of the rise, near the wizened-looking tree.

The title was left contradictory because I felt that the girl was heading towards her hope and future, but with all the damage done to the environment, the chances of her future being a bright one is rather slim. 

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Prep008

Title: Car shrouded in smoke

Medium: Watercolour

Size: A5

Date: Apr 2009

Time taken: 2.5 hours

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Prep015

Title: Fate resting on napkin

Medium: Watercolour

Size: 22 x 15 cm

Date: Sep 2009

Time taken: 2.5 hours

I knitted a… “voodoo doll”, for want of a better word, as a reference for coursework, to represent the fate of mankind. The making of it is symbolic in itself: by letting myself (a member of homo sapiens) knit/make a voodoo doll, I’m alluding to the fact that humans make their own future. We are very much like sculptors and artists in our own right – what we do will shape the world we live in.

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prep043

Title: Facing each other

Medium: Pencil

Size: 23 x 17 cm

Date: Apr 2009

Time taken: 3 hours

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prep041

Title: Masked

Medium: Blue Pen

Size: 20 x 20 cm

Date: Mar 2009

Time taken: 3.5 hours

I chose to incorporate masks into my coursework (cos I really like them, especially venetian masks. What I’d give to be able to go to Venice during Carnival.) as I felt that the assassins should wear masks to conceal their identity. The assassins, which represent pollution and everything that threatens to destroy the natural environment, should be concealed as some of the people who actually contribute to pollution in the world hide their own identities, or hide behind another’s identity. Many developed countries turn to developing countries like China to build factories, but then blame the country for emitting too many pollutants, when in actual fact, they are the reason behind the extra emissions.

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prep040

Title: Reflection off a car

Medium: Pencil

Size: 18 x 10 cm

Date: Mar 2009

Time taken: 3 hours

I did this mainly to investigate how light and shadow is warped by the contours of the car. The polished surface proved difficult to capture as there were faint highlights and shadows that showed in unexpected places. The double reflection in the wing mirror was also a challenge as I had to determine if the decor inside the car would be reflected in the reflection. (Confusing? Gosh. Of course.)

Smoke and Special Effects

Prep007

Title: Fire: Abstraction

Medium: Watercolour

Size: 21 x 10 cm

Date: Aug 2009

Time taken: 20 min

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Prep013

Title: Drifting on a pond shrouded in smoke

Medium: Watercolour (with salt)

Size: 8 x 21 cm

Date: Aug 2009

Time taken: 20 min

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Prep012

Title: Fire and vitality

Medium: Watercolour

Size: 10 x 21 cm

Date: Aug 2009

Time taken: 20 cm

As this was the first time I was using salt to alter the effects of watercolour, I felt a bit apprehensive and stayed my hand when I was dropping the crystals on the paper. Despite my misgivings, the effect turned out all right in the end. 

In the future I plan to experiment with the amount of time I leave the salt on the paper, as well as the amount of water I use. It would probably make a great difference to the final result.

(I was a bit miffed that I didn’t get the chance to experiment with sponges and toothbrushes. *Shall attempt it soon*)

Clouds

By experimenting with other media, I hope that I will be able to find the best medium to draw clouds and smoke.

Prep006

Title: Guess what this is?

Medium: Charcoal

Size: A4

Date: Mar 2009

Time taken: 30 min

Obviously, either I’m really crappy at charcoal, the paper’s not very good for charcoal drawings, or charcoal’s not ideal for drawing clouds. I think it’s the first.

What I could have done better:

Blend the “clouds” together without compromising the different degrees of darkness of the drawing.

Gosh. It really doesn’t look like anything I’ve ever seen.

*I need to work on my charcoal skills*

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Prep011

Title: Clouds

Medium: Watercolour

Size: 21 x 10 cm

Date: Apr 2009

Time taken: 15 min

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Prep028

Title: Hawk motif on clouds

Medium: Watercolour

Size: 20 x 17 cm

Date: Mar 2009

Time taken: 30 min

What I learnt from drawing clouds using watercolour:

1. Get the background colour down first, but remember to leave some space for the whiter parts of the clouds.

2. Wet the uncoloured area after a while with water. (You can leave a bit of gap at the top of the cloud – allows for a stronger highlight

3. Wait a little longer (make sure it’s not completely dry) before dabbing in the grey/shadow of the clouds.

4. Salt doesn’t really help much when it comes to painting clouds.

Landscapes

The following are prep studies on forests and mountains. I don’t know why, but somehow I love the two topics, especially if they’re combined together. I think it has to do with the magnificence of the reference photos I get. Oh, and did I mention that my brother’s a plant-lover and that his enthusiasm for plants has somehow spread to me? (and did I mention that we are twins too?) Thankfully, though, his passion for gardening hasn’t.

Prep002

Title: On forests and fires

Medium: Pen and watercolour

Size: A4< x <A3

Date: Early 2009 (Jan)

Time taken: 3 hours ++

One aspect I definitely need more practice in is drawing fires. The fire in this painting looks so dismal that it feels as if it’s going to sputter and die very soon. (You didn’t know that was a fire, did you?)

I also need more practice in drawing smoke, especially in pen and ink. One thing to note: pen is one of the worst mediums to use when it comes to drawing clouds if you’re after the fluffiness of the cloud.

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Prep010

Title: Mountains

Medium: Watercolour

Size: A5

Date: Early 2009 (Mar)

Time taken: 1 hour

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prep044

Title: Forests and mountains

Medium: Teal pen and coloured pencil

Size: 21 x 12 cm

Date: Mar 2009

Time taken: 50 min

I tried to experiment with lines for this drawing as I felt that I hadn’t done anything much with my technique and I should so something about it. Surprisingly, straight, vertical lines worked well with mountiains.

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Trees and Forests

Here are some preparatory studies on forests to prepare myself for the finals.

I think one of the main reasons why I like forests so much is that they’re so far away from our life in the urban areas that I rarely see them and so when I do see them I feel insanely happy.

Prep005

Title: Forest floor

Medium: Pen

Size: 20 x 8 cm

Date: Early 2009 (Jan)

Time taken: 1.5 hours

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Prep004

Title: Conifer trees

Medium: Charcoal

Size: Roughly A4

Date: Early 2009 (Mar)

Time taken: 45 min

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prep050

Title: Cones and rocks

Medium: Pen and watercolour

Size: 12 x 15 cm

Date: Jan 2009

Time taken: 30 min

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prep051

Title: Cones

Medium: Pen and watercolour

Size: 14 x 16 cm

Date: Jan 2009

Time taken: 30 min

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prep045

Title: Spruce and snowman

Medium: Pen

Size: 14 x 18 cm

Date: Feb 2009

Time taken: 45 min

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prep047prep048

Title: Hut

Medium: Pen

Size: 10 x 8 cm

Date: Mar 2009

Time taken: 1 hour

I drew this hut as there probably would be huts in some of the sparcely populated regions of some forests. And they’d burn wood to keep themselves warm during winter, which would emit smoke, polluting the environment.

The picture on the left shows a rough sketch that I abandoned because I drew some lines off.

Key learning points

1. Look carefully, then draw in your lines. Especially for these kind of perspective drawing.

2. Lines can define form. So make your lines go with the flow, so to speak, and make them create illusions of contours and textures.

3. If you really cannot work without a pencil and eraser, use one first.

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