Saturday, 29 December 2007
Richard was on his way to church when it started to rain. He had darted from one block of flats to another but he was stuck as the rain got heavier. The heavy rain would have drenched him if he had dashed across the road, and so he waited. After a while, a family of three walked by.
The mother asked Richard where he was going. Surprised, he muttered, to church. Without hesitation, she offered one of her two umbrellas, saying, our family can share the other one.
Richard was too taken aback and politely said that he was fine waiting. The mother insisted, and told Richard that he could return the umbrella through the lady who mans the toilet at the market. With that, the family walked off, huddled under one umbrella. A perfect stranger going out of her way to offer help.
This happened not too long ago. Heartwarming isn't it?
Resolution for 2008: Warm a heart each day!
Thursday, 27 December 2007
I also came across this interesting piece done for a song by M Ward called Chinese Translation.
Talking of M Ward, not someone I have heard of before coming across this earlier clip, here is another song from him, Requiem, that comes with a very engaging piece of video. I love the feel of M Ward's songs too.
Saturday, 22 December 2007
On the topic of animation and food, this animation created using toast is yummy! Also watch the making of clip.
Friday, 21 December 2007
Tuesday, 18 December 2007
The stories these photographs tell attract me - the hard life they once lived and their meagre existence today. The little objects that surrounds them locking in a bygone time.
Do take a look at this slideshow and the photos which will appear at busstops all over the island from 19 Dec. Chi Yin has done a great job!
Monday, 17 December 2007
Saturday, 15 December 2007
Bank of New Zealand's piggies get the luxe treatment.
Swedish low price food chain, Willys, had 1000 piggies up for adoption this Christmas. Anyone in Stockholm?
And the Japanese has this resilient little one.
Monday, 10 December 2007
There is always a better way, even if you are already a great way to fly.
Saturday, 8 December 2007
The Mature Mind challenges many of the ideas we have about how much worse our brains get as we grow older. Cutting-edge neuroscience and psychology presents a more exciting picture. After reading the book, I wish I could get involved in some work like what Dr Cohen did.
And this other author also sounds like he has been doing some fun and insightful researches. The accompanying website is great fun too. So, which way do you draw your Q?
Tuesday, 4 December 2007
It never occurred to me what "SEW" meant when I saw this word on manhole cover as a child. The word left an indelible print in my memory but I don't remember ever asking why SEW, or for that matter what sewing has got to do with the road or the cover. Clearly, I was not exactly very curious, was I?
Maybe if I did ask, someone might have said, "Don't talk rubbish"! Ha!
New York Times recently had a photo feature on New York's manhole covers which are made in India. The photos are wonderful to look at and the narrated slideshow is a must see.
And not too long ago, I came across this collection of pictures and blogs of manhole covers in Japan. Look at these beautiful covers.
Who knew that something as seemingly insignificant as manhole covers can have such interesting stories and beauty.
Monday, 3 December 2007
Monday, 26 November 2007
This funny/quirky clip made me laugh, hope it makes you LOL too.
There is this other one for those who love Mac.
Clever mac banner ad from Amit Gupta on Vimeo.
Wednesday, 21 November 2007
Saturday, 17 November 2007
My little garden along the corridor is a patch of wild things.
And I actually wanted to grow what others might consider weeds. Seriously, I do like moss and some weeds, and they are not exactly things I can cultivate just because I wanted them.
This weird looking plant that reproduces itself through its leave fascinates me too. Of course, it seems to have been sturdy enough to last with me.
There is also this money plant which was very near death. But as soon as it was allowed to climb the wall, it quite literally launched an invasion. Within just days, its roots shot out to grip the wall and the leaves grew really huge. Quite a monster.
Even though everything I have at the moment are essentially green and there isn't a single pretty bloom or spot of colour, I like the fact that it is teeming with life in wild abandonment. Go! Green!
Monday, 12 November 2007
(The artist of this drawing is a retiree who is self-taught in art. He has more pieces available for sale.)
Then there is also this ATC that was created by Gary.
For pet lovers, their pets do have a significant place in their hearts. And of course I have also heard of those who swore off pets after the heart-break of losing one at a tender age.
This animation was created for the Oregon Humane Society for their "End Petlessness" campaign. It states on its website that it is scientifically proven that pets makes us happier and healthier, and going by the name of the organisation, more humane too I suppose.
I am not sure I will be able to keep a pet - so far, my only attempt has been to keep some fishes which I seemed to have murdered along the way. As I declared recently, pets to me are nice but only from far.
Tuesday, 6 November 2007
The holiday season will be upon us soon.
Heard about the People-powered Holiday Card Store? This is hosted by Moo, where your Flickr photos can be printed into namecards and greeting cards. A super cool Web 2.0 kind of company.
For those of us who take beautiful photos, create eye-catching artwork or possesses grat wit, you might like to know about this little competition by Moo. You upload your work into the Moo Flickr pool, and anyone can choose to make their greeting card using your images. If you do so by 1 Dec, you will be eligible for the competition. There are 4 categories: best selling, best photo, best non-photo and best humour. If nothing else, I think it is pretty cool when your images are used by someone out there for their greeting card. Each card sold also brings money to a charity.
If there are enough people at the next ATC Live Trade this Thursday, we will try to have a theme going for the next session in December: "Home for Christmas".
Monday, 29 October 2007
Wednesday, 24 October 2007
Sunday, 21 October 2007
Well, I made frontpage of today's mah pew poh. (Did notice that an earlier copy Shin Min Daily News was without the 4D results and another that was bought later did.)
The headline appears a little sensational - "Ex-P Gives up $8k Pay, Rather Earn $300" - but I am happy with the lovely report inside about the concept of Pauseability. I could never have said it all in Chinese as well as Pauline the journalist did. The photographer also took some really flattering photos, camera-shy as I am.
Today, a mother came in with her 5-year old daughter because the daughter recognised my face in the papers and asked to come in to do some art. That came as a surprise and that was also when I realised that the article has been published.
Media exposure to create some awareness of Pauseability is really much needed at this point. This came at a point when I thought I have tried to get some media interest to no avail. Am thankful.
Monday, 15 October 2007
It was great to have Ee Wei join us at last Thursday's ATC live trade session. She created some very diverse range of ATCs ranging from photography to collage. Her infectious enthusiasm brightened the evening.
This is what I traded with her. Pretty eh?
It is also wonderful that ATC is a worldwide interest and with the internet, it has been possible to set-up trades with friends from all over the world. At the last session, I was able to show these first few international trades.
Sure look forwarding to meeting again at our next session in November.
I have been having fun creating different handwoven bookmarks, many of which have been sent out with my international trade. These will be put up for sale too.
Monday, 8 October 2007
Earlier this year, as I began to explore what has been termed "Web 2.0", I soon learned about how information and the idea of knowledge construction in the everyday life on the net have started making some fundamental shifts. It led me to putting together a presentation that I shared with some teachers, although I do not yet know the exact implications of these shifts for learning and schools.
David Weinberger has created a wonderful book that so clearly explains what it is all about. With a good dose of history and drawing from some powerful parallels, he has beautifully described this new digital disorder which he calls going miscellaneous.
I especially enjoyed the chapter "What Nothing Says" in which David explores that idea of the importance of the implicit in what he calls the "third-order world".
This is a 2007 publication that is available at our National Library. Grab "Everything is Miscellaneous" and enjoy a good and, IMHO, an essential read.
Tuesday, 2 October 2007
Like this set of rather abstract looking ATCs? I must say that I am rather pleased with them and there's certainly a hint of pride each time I introduce them to anyone. These were created using the work of 3-year old David.
David came by with his Mum, sister and aunty Theresa recently. (Read Mum's wonderfully kind blog. Thanks Sher! Cool photos too.) When Theresa tried out painting, David happily dived in too. He was sure what he wanted - colours! With confident strokes and bright colours he painted his house and shimmering water in a pool.
When I posted the ATCs on atcards, JacqueLynn was inspired by them to create these.
It is simply wonderful seeing creativity expressed. I cannot wait to get these ATCs which Jacque has generously offered to send to me.
There is something about the paradoxical mix of wild abandonment and deep focus you see in children when they are creating. I am so happy to have had David made my day. Hope you all had a great Children's Day - appreciate their sense of wonder, the sparkle in their eyes and twinkle in their laughter.
PS I am considering starting "ATC Junior" sessions for children to exchange ATCs they have made. If you are keen for your children to do this, please let me known at firstname.lastname@example.org. This could happen as soon as this December.
Tuesday, 25 September 2007
Today is the 15th day of the 8th month in the Lunar calendar. For the Chinese, it is mid-Autumn. Many in Singapore refer to it as the Mooncake Festival. Someone once commented that in Singapore, many Chinese Festivals are referred to by the associated food, and we sure are a nation of foodies. The mind-boggling variety of mooncakes available goes wilder with each passing year. Besides Christmas and Chinese New Year, I think this is possibly the other period of bounty for many food businesses.
I was delighted to receive a homebaked one from Song Imm. Looks good ya?
This is also the time when children have a good time lighting up lanterns. As a child, I remember this to be a time for "legitimate" play with fire - candles, matches and all. Watching coloured flames dance along the wall as we walk around the darker corners of the neighbourhood with our lanterns. Then there is the trauma of seeing your lantern go up in flames. And the concentrated effort in deftly trying to patch up a small burnt hole with cellophane.
Even though most children are given battery operated lanterns these days, I have seen spots in the estate that are covered with wax. I guess some of them still get to enjoy the same thrill. This must be quite a headache for the cleaners though.
I came across this fun little thing called Sketchcast and coincidentally saw this entry about the Mid-autumn Festival. It is a fun alternative to an overly wordy blog (like this entry).
Talking about sketching, I love this idea of a a human flipbook. What a clever, and not so expensive, advertising idea. You can see both the advert and the process of making it.
Friday, 21 September 2007
It comes with a sub-heading that says "This is not a "What Must I Know" world but a "Why Must I Know" era." Each day, an editor would lay out the key news of the day giving each a snappy title that is carefully crafted to start with the same word.
I had wanted to translate a sample of these titles but found it difficult. Perhaps, it is an aspect of the beauty of the Chinese language which I find hard to translate.
There is almost poetry in these titles. I like the creativity, and sometimes humour, in this. I do wonder how many readers appreciate the thoughtfulness behind this.
A few young people that I know have difficulty learning their Mother Tongue. Besides mugging for the exams, they do not seem to have much reasons for picking up the language at all. Perhaps, this is a good case of the importance of the "why must I know" versus just the mere "what"?
On a different note, if you missed the last ATC live trade session, we are going to share about ATC at the Art Market @ Fort Canning on 30 Sep (Sunday) from 1 to 2 pm at the Cox Studio.
Thursday, 13 September 2007
I traded 3 cards and each one so different from the other and all so stunningly beautiful.
Our first-ever ATC live trade session was a simple and wonderful evening. 8 of us were there to learn more about ATC, see each other's wonderful creation and listen to each other's story. We all had fun.
The next few sessions would get even more exciting. Join us at Pauseability every 2nd Thursday of the month from 7 to 9 pm.
Monday, 10 September 2007
When I first saw this series of T-shirts in My Paper, I was instantly drawn to them. I love the simple artwork from shi-ki-sa-i. As I took a closer look, then I noticed the funny little parts on each design. The shoes come with laces, the blinds with a string to pull, the drainhole and stopper with a chain, and so on. Very clever I think.
The Japanese are known to have an eye for visual appeal. Their meals are a feast for the eyes too. On Sunday, we lunched at the Sun with Moon Restaurant at Central to send-off a friend who is going to UK to pursue her studies. Great company, lovely food and not too pricey either.
In preparing for the first ever ATC live session on 13 Sep, I have been creating quite a few ATCs.
I started this one thinking about penguins. Then I thought it would be funny if the penguin ate ice cream, like the time we were all feeling freezing cold in New Zealand when a New Zealander jogged past in shorts and eating ice-cream. But as the drawing took shape, it looked rather sad that the ice cream is melting.
I had just come across many reports about the alarming rate at which the ice caps are melting, which may explain why I drew it this way. Global warming is truly a concern. And I learnt recently that in fact this warming process started soon after the big flood that Noah went through.
Tuesday, 4 September 2007
Received an unexpected mention in Straits Times yesterday. It was a nice personal piece from Mui Hoong who paused by on Thursday last week. I am glad that she enjoyed the time spent.
This is one of the great things about having set up shop - meeting people, especially those that are quite different from my usual circle. Better yet, we have often had a chance to have some good conversations too.
Lately, I have started trying out social networking on the internet too. Facebook is a new arena to me. Still groping my way around but am thankful for new friends like Betsy who showed me some of the neat stuff.
If you see the right side of this blog, you will also notice 2 other communities that I have just joined - Indiepublic and atcards (for artist trading cards enthusiasts).
Sure gives a new spin to the idea of 6 degrees of separation.
Saturday, 1 September 2007
I like the look and feel of the illustrations at Russ Street. Doesn't the sight of these horses make you just want to take a closer look?
Butt Biting Bugs! What a whimsical idea.
Now, to something less quirky.
A word of thanks to Leonard for his blog entry about Pauseability. If you like to know more about Jumping Clay, do contact him.
It's 1st September and I would like to say Happy Teachers' Day to all my hardworking / heartworking friends out there doing a wonderful job making a difference for the younger ones.
Monday, 27 August 2007
My friend paused by with his family. His two children, Jonathan and Joan, have been to the angel-clay sessions and have enjoyed themselves. While the adults chatted, they explored the shop and was soon intrigued by the special paper punchers.
What amazed me was how quickly Jonathan thought about making a banner with a string of bears as soon as he punched the first one and was drawing in the details. And in no time at all, he created this proto-type. Notice how he has given different eyes to each bear. I am amazed and amused.
Joan, his younger sister in Primary 1, also made a lovely little card for me. Her dad and I share the same birthday and she was so sweet to make this card especially for me.
These kids are such delights.
I have been working hard at getting more publicity for Pauseability. Don't seem to be making much headway. Did have a pleasant surprise when my friend told me that Pauseability has been featured on CityPatrol. Thanks CityPatrol Officers! Check it out!
For the rest of you who are reading this blog, here's my desperate plea: pass the word around about Pauseability to 10 people in the next week. Ahem, and if you have yet to find time to pause by, you deserve to reward yourself with a trip. Hee!
Tuesday, 21 August 2007
A professor asked her class, "Why do people shout at each other when they are angry?" The class discussed and a number of answers were offered but none that the professor was satisfied with.
Finally, the professor said, "When people are angry with each other, their hearts are far apart. That's why they shout. But strangely, the more they shout, the further their hearts get, and the louder they go."
The class was intrigued, and the professor went on. "On the other hand, when 2 people are in love, their hearts are very close to each other. That's why they whisper sweet nothings to each other. Sometimes, they needn't even use words but let their eyes do the talking."
How true. So, the next time you are angry and knows that your hearts are far apart, let things cool down and when you know that your hearts have become closer once more, that would be the time to speak.
Yet another inspiring story from last Sunday's Chinese newspapers.
And the picture shows one of the latest artist trading card "Sew in Love". Have you made yours yet? Do keep a date with me on 13 Sep at 7 pm for our first atc trading session at Pauseability.
Friday, 17 August 2007
These buttons are such visual and tactile delights. They came to me in a crumpy plastic bag, mixed with 2 rusted screws, bits of dust and thread and that faint smell of sewing machine oil.
I enjoyed sorting them, taking in the colours and then cleaning them. Those that came in a huge lot, I strung them up. Felt a little like I was wasting my time, so I set a time-limit to get it all done. Overshot the time but I really was having a good time. Finally, I laid them all out, took a good look and snapped some photos.
I bought these from a shop that is closing down. The old couple that ran the shop has decided to call it quits. When they heard that I have decided to venture into business, they kindly chided me and wondered aloud why I would choose such a path.
It has been 3 months since setting up shop. Pauseability has been around for a quarter of a year just at the blink of an eye. If you ask me how business is, I presume that you are asking if I am having brisk business and making money. Honestly, I am not. It is still far too quiet as far as the cash register is concerned.
Yet, things have in fact been anything but quiet. The number of things I have been able to do and the variety of people I have had the chance to interact with have been beyond my wildest imagination. Looking through my Flickr and I can only say that God has been tremendously good to me. Transforming an empty shell of a shop into a cosy space, setting up an exhbition about my childhood days and having people turn up, and making numerous handcrafts that surprises me how nice they look. Talking to the old man who takes his walk wearing his baseball cap, seeing the neighbouring hairstylist meticulously create his handmade gift for his girlfriend, meeting someone else who remembers Yippee! magazine, and enjoying the company of my friends who pause by with their wonderful children. The list could goes on and on.
There continues to be those moments when a stretch of days go by with no one pausing by, and it does make the sense of hope of business picking up seem suddenly so hollow. Dipping into my savings and watching the amount dwindle is no thrill either. And I wonder if my patience will ever outlast the indefinite wait. Doubts peck at my confidence and I sigh.
At those moments, it does seem just like the old couple who sold me the buttons have said, what a silly (or as I would say foolhardy) choice that I have made.
BUT i am having TONs of COLOUR that God has so graciously added to this part of my life. For this I am delighted and it makes the tough parts worth it. (Can't help the lame play of words ... haha!)
Enjoy this plate that is brimming over with But-Tons of Colour!
Saturday, 11 August 2007
Photos from Flickr are picked up up based on the lyrics of a song and then these images are put together into a music video. Each time you load, you get a different set of photos. Each image is taken by just about anyone at all in the world. Beautiful.
And as the photos stack up, you still get to move them and click on them to see who took them and what else is in that Flickr album. Wow!
You must not miss the Astronaut Project. Uber cool!
Tonight, I am looking forward to a wonderful event - the iConcert which showcases the original compositions and performances from the youths in my church. A CD will also be launched called Spirit Flux. Amazing.
I am excited about the next new project at Pauseability - Artist Trading Cards trading sessions. Artist Trading Cards or ATC are miniature art 2.5" by 3.5" that has gained some popularity among artists and hobbyists. Any medium can be used, from painting, photography to collage. Only that the size must be 2.5" by 3.5".
I first came across ATC earlier this year. When I met Richard through the 70's exhibition and he showed me the beautiful ATCs he has created, I decided to start trading sessions. Imagine how exciting it will be to have different people bring their little spot of creativity and sharing this with each other.
Richard's collage ATCs are first-class works. I have made my own humble attempt and this bird ATC you see above is my freehand drawing.
And taking about birds, just today I came across the Little Bird project that started in Germany. The online gallery is just such a treat to look at. You can get a poster for which a big part of the profits go to UNICEF. Go take a look and perhaps it might inspire you with your first ATC project.
ATC Trading Sessions will be on the 2nd Thursday of every month starting 13 September from 7 to 9 pm. Be there!