Record/cassette cover art

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Dye Cocktail Citron by Tu Sai Quis

Great combination of black and white + big hit of neon. Love the use of gradient.

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HITIME by Nora Demeczky

Absolutely dreamy paper texture. I like the noisy pattern too. Remind me of a QR code. Perhaps that can be remixed into a pattern.

Looking at ideas to redesign the CD thing I made last semester, possibly expanding on it. I’m really into the idea of the bookshelf as an installation, so I’m also thinking about the possible objects I can design so that they form this concept of identity and documentation.


Art of the glitch: Jon Cates, Rosa Menkman


Jon Cates,

In the interview by Randall Packer, Glitch Expectations: A Conversation With Jon Cates, Jon Cates’ works are referred to as ‘dirty new media’, which is an apt description for the low-fi, hypnotic quality of his animations.  In the homepage of, the header image and layout brings to mind the work of David Carson.  Grungy, pixelled, deconstructed… It’s like the virtual version of what you get if you made printer ink smudges or colour half-tone. The low-res quality of gif images is both nostalgic and analog. Another description of the dirty new media I resonated with in the article is that the ‘dirtiness’ in this form of new media work suggests that there’s a human touch to it. I thought it’s a good thing to take note of and try to weave into my work online so that in terms of aesthetic and concept it’s congruent with my print work.



A closer look at the source code of site. I find the layout of source code fascinating sometimes. I’m no programmer and I’ve not done much research into why the layouts look like this, but from a typographical point of view, it makes for an interesting visual experience. One of the things I want to include in my virtual work is this idea of coding. Coding as the backbone and underlying side of what you see on a webpage. Perhaps in order to make this concept accessible for viewers, I could arrange my text layout online to resemble the source code. While typographical explorations on print are always fun, I’m quite excited to see what I can come up with online. I briefly showed the class one of the projects I did over the summer break with my friend where we made ‘glitch poetry’ using predictive text, and then we played with the type and layout. I think I can definitely take it further online by incorporating animated sequences.


sunshine01 sunshine02



Here’s another interesting web layout. This is Sunshine in My Throat by Rosa Menkman. I thought the animated bits were absolutely wacky and psychedelic. Just a visual reference of what I can do…

(ps. need to get started on some work too)



Being Together by John Clang


I got this book over the summer. It is an documentation of the solo exhibition of Singaporean photographer John Clang, who is based in New York City. I was introduced to John Clang’s work when I was working on my A Level art project. Some people from Objectifs came down to my art class for a small photography sharing session, and one of the instructors suggested that I might be interested in John Clang’s works. So I went for his exhibition at 2902 Gallery in 2010.

Here’s his artist statement:

“The deeply personal also occupies my work, specifically the themes of memory, identity and longing as a son living overseas for years and separated from my family back home. In series like Erasure and Guilt, I respectively explore the fears when contemplating the death of a loved one, and the guilt of disappointing our loved ones. Explorations of identity can also take a turn for the playful and provocative—as evidenced in lighter series like Beon Sleeps and Me and Friends.”

Like John, my work is largely personal, drawing from my archive of blog entries, and journal pages. Some of the themes that I am looking at also include memory, identity, and fears, on the virtual space as well as in real life.

Previously I was only given a handout of his works, so I was very happy to be able to get this exhibition catalog and see the photographs in full size. I actually found this copy from a small shop selling art books in the Montmarte area of Paris.

Apart from the wonderful works of John Clang, I thought that the publication is extremely well designed. This is the work of Yanda of Do Not Design. Do Not Design is a local creative consultancy who is responsible for some inspiring editorial work, such as the magazine The Design Society Journal. To be honest, I am not very good with catching up with what local design companies to. But I personally really like the work done by Do Not Design.

These are some of my favourite spreads in the book.


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John Clang’s photo-books, including this one, can be purchased from DECK gallery at Prinsep Street.


Risograph references


I bought some of these beautiful zines printed with risograph over the summer as well. I have been quite interested in this printing technique for some time, although I have not personally tried printing my own work with it. Over the last year I have been trying to collect some good examples of risograph works and learning more about the process.  My aim for this semester is to print a section of my work with risograph.

Why am I interested in this technique? Last semester I made some glitch art. They didn’t look very good when they are printed with the laser printer. I’m trying to find out ways that I can bring the “virtual to print”, and I think overprinting with risograph using such bright and neon colours, could help achieve this effect.

Below are some examples of overprinting with risograph.

From the work Aqua Solo by Double D‘s.

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Unmatter by Dominic KestertonPhoto 16-8-15 2 07 44 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 07 49 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 07 58 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 08 05 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 08 10 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 08 14 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 08 18 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 08 32 pm


What is a Grid?


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Experimental print

Today I am sharing two publications: a zine with no name that I bought from Ti Pi Tin, and an alternative music magazine called Ray Gun.

Both are inspirational to me in terms of their experimental methods.

Here’s the zine with no name:Photo 16-8-15 2 10 04 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 10 08 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 10 13 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 10 20 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 10 26 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 10 34 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 10 39 pm

It is very simply made, staple bound, printed with a photocopier on generic coloured paper. I like it a lot because I thought it looks quite polished and cool for a zine that is made with a photocopier. It makes me think about how it is possible to use such low-cost methods to produce a print work that does not discount on quality. The images used in the zines have a good range of tonal values, and the black produced by the printer is rich and saturated.

I personally feel that in my experience of learning design and making publications, it is constantly implied that in order for work to achieve a polished look, it is necessary to invest (i.e spend a lot of money) in materials and printing. What does looking polished even means? I also hear a lot of my peers complaining about shops that don’t do good printing. I don’t completely disagree, but I find that as creatives we must be resourceful and work around what is perceived as weaknesses and turn them into something worthwhile. Given the right resources, most of us are able to make outstanding publications. But I also think it will be quite fun and challenging  if we were to make publications using low-fi methods such as collaging, stamping, scanning, or experimenting with the photocopier. Does good design = expensive paper + printing + hours of working on InDesign + referencing Behance portfolios to death?

Anyway I don’t really believe in that and I would want to try something like this for my FYP.

The second publication I’m sharing is called Ray Gun, which is an alternative music magazine which had since ceased its run. The magazine’s editorial designer was David Carson. There is something very distinctively 90’s about the design work. I remember seeing these magazines in my cousins’ room when I was much younger. Both of them are trained in graphic design, and their own works have a bit of David Carson in them. I managed to salvage just one magazine many years ago from their home when they moved out and it has remained one of my go-to publications for design inspiration for a long time.

The type in this magazine is absolutely awesome. Text in a single article can have varying kerning and line height, which makes for an exciting visual experience.

Everytime I have to make some boring work that requires me to put some text and images side by side, I always ask myself, how do I make this thing look cool? I always reach out for this magazine and I feel inspired.Photo 16-8-15 2 18 50 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 18 58 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 19 12 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 19 20 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 19 29 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 19 34 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 19 40 pm Photo 16-8-15 2 19 55 pm

Holycrap: Renn Lim by Renn Lim


“Renn Lim by Renn Lim” is yet another one of Holycrap’s creative ventures. I really like how this little book is put together, it reminds me so much of my own journals and how I save little scraps of paper and other ephemera that I love a lot.

What I love about Holycrap’s design approach is that they have a very distinctive and original style. They work with what their large archive of material and make an aesthetic out of it. It is absolutely okay to be messy, or when things get stained. From the viewpoint of a book lover and a creative, I think that sometimes it is important to embrace some of the imperfections and make it a part of design. This book is an example of how elements of art, craft, and design can come together and complement each other perfectly, and make the experience of going through the book so pleasant. Books are meant to come in contact with our touch, dog-eared pages and stains are inevitable. Books should feel at home in our hands.


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Paper bits that are scanned, printed, and deliberately crumpled by hand.Photo 16-8-15 11 45 09 am Photo 16-8-15 11 45 19 am Photo 16-8-15 11 45 24 am Photo 16-8-15 11 45 30 am Photo 16-8-15 11 46 37 am

Super adorable and amazing replica of the envelopes from photo shops. I laid an actual one next to it for comparison. It even folds up like the real thing. Inside the envelopes are small prints of Renn’s paintings.Photo 16-8-15 11 46 44 am Photo 16-8-15 11 46 55 am Photo 16-8-15 11 47 15 am Photo 16-8-15 11 47 21 am Photo 16-8-15 11 47 53 am Photo 16-8-15 11 47 54 am Photo 16-8-15 11 47 56 am

Holycrap: Till Death Do Us Part


Really enjoyed looking at the second famzine by Holycrap. This issue is particularly inspiring for me in terms of the way the contents are being presented. I have been busy scanning some of my journals and other little things. Looking at this work gives me many ideas on how I can present my data in a manner that is true to the medium. Most importantly, how can I capture the ephemeral quality of these things?

Holycrap had a sharing session at Deck two weeks ago and they talked about how the made the second zine. The second famzine is a tribute to the grandparents of Renn and Aira, a celebration of the older Lims’ 50th wedding anniversary. The cover design is an old Chinese National Language School folder, which was scanned and redesigned to fit the mini-books.Photo 16-8-15 11 39 52 am Photo 16-8-15 11 40 01 am Photo 16-8-15 11 40 07 am

Absolutely charming details being put into this work. Each copy of the zine is individually hand-stamped with the title of the work. And then the folder is intentionally “wrecked” and taped over to give the worn look. If you look closely, the yellow stains are actually scans from the actual folder. It is all very realistic. I’m interesting in going for this design approach with regards to my work because I think the data cannot be simply arranged on InDesign, printed, and that’s it.Photo 16-8-15 11 40 19 am Photo 16-8-15 11 40 24 am

Inside the folder is a 5-part book series with different chapters for their findings. What a brilliant and unique way of designing.Photo 16-8-15 11 40 32 am Photo 16-8-15 11 40 39 am Photo 16-8-15 11 40 45 am Photo 16-8-15 11 40 51 am Photo 16-8-15 11 40 53 am

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Mini (super realistic) replicas of ephemera makes for a very engaging and intimate experience when going through this work.Photo 16-8-15 11 42 05 am Photo 16-8-15 11 42 10 am Photo 16-8-15 11 42 17 am Photo 16-8-15 11 42 23 am Photo 16-8-15 11 42 28 am Photo 16-8-15 11 42 36 am Photo 16-8-15 11 42 41 am Photo 16-8-15 11 42 50 am

Holycrap: Google Translating Tokyoto


A good friend gave me the brilliant Rubbish Famzines by Holycrap. I’ve been looking through this over the last few weeks. These are some really inspirational work in terms of design and documentation which I will be looking at quite plenty for reference in the course of my FYP.

Holycrap is a local art collective made up of Pann Lim, Claire Lim, and their two children Renn and Aira. They have been making the Rubbish Famzines for two years now and recently launched their fourth famzine entitled “The Incomplete Herbarium and Other Garden City Exploits”.

A few weeks ago, I had a chance to listen to the family share about their project and how they work together to make these brilliant famzines. The family defines the famzines as a family magazine, a compilation of all that they find interesting and memorable to them as a family.

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Holycrap at DECK two weeks ago.Photo 16-8-15 11 43 22 am

Google Translating Tokyoto is the first famzine that they made in 2013. It is a brilliantly pink book documenting their first trip together as a family. Some pages from the zine.Photo 16-8-15 11 43 19 am  Photo 16-8-15 11 43 30 am

Incorporating screenshots, film photos and text.Photo 16-8-15 11 43 47 am

Never thought of it, but QR codes are actually a brilliant way of incorporating virtual content with print. During the talk, the family demonstrated the use of these QR codes, which leads to funny YouTube videos and Vimeo clips. Photo 16-8-15 11 43 55 am Photo 16-8-15 11 44 07 am Photo 16-8-15 11 44 13 am Photo 16-8-15 11 44 33 am