Hong Kong, Here I come!!
This long weekend will be a busy one for me as i am off to Hong Kong tonight - my first trip arranged for Year 2012!! I have a feeling that it will be one of my best Hong Kong trips that i've ever been on. :-)
For your info, my travel plans / trips have been already lined up for the year, please be assured that there will be lots of amazing photos to be blogged soon in my travels!!
I hope all of you will have a wonderful weekend too!! :-)
Nostalgia at Zion Road Flats
Some old Housing Development Board (HDB) flats located at Zion Road will be demolished to make way for new development. So they say most of the ‘pro’ demolition arguments centre around the “It’s ugly” standpoint without actually taking the architectural merit into account. Most of the flats (Block 88 to 92) were built in the 1970s. Granted, there will be a big hole where they once stood, but it will soon be replaced with new modern looking buildings at some point. The design of the whole place will be definitely changed too. No doubt that the new development will have lots of glass as most modern buildings do. The question is are we so easily impressed with shiny things? Just because it’s shiny doesn’t mean it’s good. Modern buildings don’t appear to have the ‘shelf life’ of older ones. They seem more disposable. Everyone loves nostalgia, i guess.
This month is a happy month for my 2 little 'monsters' at home as my cute niece's and nephew's birthdays both happen to fall in the same month - March!! Birthdays are always joyous occasions. Every year, i will sponsor their birthday cakes as per their favorite cartoon characters - Dora The Explorer cake for my niece (Rachelle) and Power Ranger Samurai cake for my nephew (Ryan), happy birthday to my 2 dearest!! :-)
I arrived at 15 MINUTES at about 6.30pm last evening on a Friday and i was like and can't help feeling this way - " WOW, this place is so cool!"
15 Minutes is a lovely and creative cafe located in LaSalle College of the Arts school. The cafe has a mixture of long wooden benches and tables,and high stools and tables, which makes it seem communal and canteen-like. The walls and pillars are covered with cut-outs from magazines and posters, offering a quirky and colorful feel to this interesting cafe.
This cafe inside Lasalle College of the Arts has 2 levels: bottom with a bar and the top with a kitchen. You can choose to dine at either. There are more than enough seats around for 100 over people to dine comfortably. Furnitures are mostly wood and they fit in nicely to the arty theme. There are also tables and benches like those of school canteens. Really nostalgic. :-)
Tourists at Singapore River
Most locals are aware that the public artworks on the south side of the Singapore river are set against a backdrop of the towering skyscrapers in the financial district. The life-size bronze sculptures represent the city's past and present inhabitants.
The bronzes are popular with tourists; some of the sculptures have parts burnished to gold by the hands of thousands of people stroking the smooth metal while posing for photographs with them.
The sculpture of these coolies (workers) loading goods onto a bullock cart, a common sight during the earlier days of Singapore. Caught two little female tourists resting their tired feet on the sculpture!! An amusing snapshot! :-)
Some new photographs taken for another upcoming project!! Take a peek first. Stay tuned!
A dedicated home office is ideal if you have the space available. I was inspired by this statement when I was at a friend’s house recently. Her master bedroom has a large walk-in closet with extra space at the end, so she turned the corner into a cozy work area facing a window with a view. This creative design area is quiet and private, making it ideal for concentration. Stuck at the corner of a walk-in closet where nobody would give a second look, may be hidden a smart succession of shelves, wide enough to fit a laptop, a table lamp, a vase and any other kind of useful stuff we usually have on a typical office desk.
We are all capable of becoming side tracked from time to time, stress may have your mind wandering or you simply can't bring yourself to concentrate. We are only human after all. Sometimes your thoughts just become scattered and your mind won't quit racing. Times like these when absolutely nothing you set out to accomplish gets done. We live in a fast paced society today that only keeps growing and in times like these it is important to concentrate on the tasks at hand. Improving your concentration is like learning a skill and to learn this skill you must practice. By concentrating you are directing your mental powers and your efforts towards a particular activity. Concentration is the key tool in finishing the particular activity you set out to do.
Actually I also feel that where you work and in what conditions you are working says a lot about the kind of person you are. Whether you work from home behind a pile of clutter and debris or whether you work in a nice corner office with a view and not a stitch of clutter in sight, your work space should be an area where you can clearly think and focus on the tasks at hand.
Whether my friend places the study area in between a walk-in closet or even a small storage area, she has infused fun and functional elements to inspire learning! Indeed, the location of the home work area makes a big impact on how functional it is. We all should look for a space in the home that is quiet, without a lot of traffic. This will help to clear your mind and you’ll focus all your thoughts on your work.
Concentration is a skill that we can all learn to improve by centering our thoughts on the tasks that need to be fulfilled. Remember that you can help improve your concentration with using simple strategies such as finding a suitable working environment. It is important to see and focus where you are working comfortably and the contemporary tendencies dictate to simply.…do your job anywhere. :-)
Some new photographs taken for an upcoming project! Take a peek first. Stay tuned!
Thanks to this friend of mine (HL) who is a freelance draughtsman (an artist skilled in architectural drawing), i found a unique design of an architectural home office. She has an almost full height ceiling bookcase where she displays her work files and favourite range of comic books as well as some special collectibles. I come to realise that bookcases are functional pieces of furniture that typically don't call attention to themselves. But they don't have to be dull. If you jazz up a bookcase, it can help define the overall style and appeal of a home or office space. The simplest way to jazz up your bookcase may be to artfully arrange your books. In addition, we can arrange your keepsakes on the shelves to make a bookcase more interesting. You can arrange items beside, in front of and even on top of books. A bookcase is more than a piece of furniture. Because it holds your books, it makes a statement about your interests, hobbies and values.
This friend of mine is always consumed by major projects and is working day and night, sometimes through weekends and holidays to work on redesigns. However, she is also an avid reader of comic books, her bookcase has certainly added visual interest and encourage reading in the home. She has definitely infused her home office room with her personality.
Organising a home office is an art. It requires some imagination and forethought. It is the key to streamlining your everyday life and creating a sense of order.
More importantly, for me, organisation enables me to surround myself with beautiful things I love. Why? Because being truly organized means striking a perfect balance between items we display that are meaningful to us and items we store for future use. A simple fact to remember when planning storage for any space: The more accessible it is, the more likely it will be used.
It is human instinct to want to create a sense of order in our lives. Making a home office look fresh and contemporary is a creative process, so we should all think of it as a blank canvas and apply our imagination. Remember, it is not how much space you have, it is what you do with it. :-)
In 2012, Esplanade commemorates its 10th Anniversary in service to our community with the theme "Celebrating Life - The Best of The Human Spirit Through the Arts". One of the programmes lined up in the year or in the month of March with much anticipation is the Mosaic Music Festival.
Mosaic Music Festival is an annual 10-day long music festival in Singapore that features both local and overseas acts. It showcases a variety of music genres, ranging from indie-folk to hip-hop. It aims to provide a platform for interaction between Singapore and International artistes.
The team behind Mosaic expanded its jazz and world-music repertoire to include folk and rock acts. The aim is to cater to all age groups with a range of music, from experimental to jazz to classical. And it is not just about showcasing the music. The Esplanade also hopes to provide opportunities for audiences to get to know the artists and their personalities.
Mosaic Music Festival 2012 kicked off on the 9th March and will end on the 18th. I attended the Australian band performance last evening by Murder Mouse Blues Band. Murder Mouse Blues Band was founded in 2008 when the creative forces of singer / author and songwriting giant Adam Morris combined with multi-instrumentalist / composer / producer Jon Edwards. Together with drumming master, Warren Hall, the band has quickly become a national force in Australian music known for their unpredictable live shows.
Just before Dusk
I love silhouettes, especially against a sunset sky. Everyone, no matter what time zone they're in, all of us can witness a sunset.
Some of the best things about sunset:
a) It costs nothing - 100% free.
b) It is available everywhere, to everyone, a global asset -- 100% inclusion.
c) Barring a world-ending supernova, it will never run out - 100% dependable.
d) It instills serenity - 100% peace.
Sunset happens every single day and yet everyone seems to be instinctively attracted to it like a moth to a candle. After dusk, we should all look forward to a beautiful day the next day! Enjoy life :-)
For some unknown reason, I’m drawn to photographing architecture that has a reflective surface. The ultimate take on this is when you can find a reflective building located across the street from another reflective building. My interest in photographing architecture has been gradual.
Below photo featured Cenntennial Tower, a skyscraper office building which happens to have an ideal lighting conditions with varying light and dark areas reflected off the building. The irregular shaped structure and oblique angles help to keep the rectangular forms from seeming too boxlike.
Using reflections in your photography can add an element of interest to what could otherwise be a mundane image. You can use any reflective surface, such as water, sunglasses, windows or a drinking glass – really any reflective surface will do. You just need to keep an eye out for the right light, angle, timing, shapes and of course your imagination.
The great thing with using reflections when you are taking photos is that it can completely alter the image from something fairly straightforward to something dynamic or amazingly abstract like in the reflection of the commercial / residential buildings.
A fairy static image of a building can become an artistic photo. You can use reflections to mirror the skyline of buildings, a streetscape during your travels or you can use a reflection to bring something into your image that is out of the frame.
When you are walking around, look up at the buildings around you and down at sidewalk for reflective surfaces. Try adjusting your angles to get the best reflection or light for your desired image. Shooting reflective images is as endless as your imagination. Not everything will work out but you will have fun in the process.
If I’m visiting a city and the weather is right, I’ll search for interesting buildings with the hope that I’ll be able to do something creative with the images later on. I’ll also return to the same locations when I revisit a city, with the idea that I might get a better shot or have a better understanding of what I’m trying to achieve. :-)