Sunday, March 26, 2017

Sungei Road Thief Market

Sungei Road Thief Market will soon be gone by July 2017. You can read about it here.

Whether you call it thief market or flea market, it is undeniably important part of Singapore's history. My uncles would come all the way from Johor, Malaysia to source for the parts that he wanted and brought back to repair his fridges or fans or even cars.

On this sketch, I thought it was important to sketch the context too, so, I chose a view to include Sim Lim Tower and Rochor Centre which will be demolished soon. You can see my sketch of Rochor Centre here.

Wednesday, March 01, 2017

Dakota Crescent

Dakota Crescent is older than Singapore. It was built by Singapore Improvement Trust (SIT) in 1958 and handed over to Housing and Development Board (HDB) in 1960. The name Dakota was taken from the American transport aircraft Dakota DC-3, which commonly landed at Kallang Airport before it was closed. The name Dakota could also commemorate the aviation disaster of June 29, 1946, when one of the Royal Air Force's Dakota aircraft crashed at Kallang Airport in a thunderstorm, killing all passengers on board. Anyway, its days are numbered too. It is to be demolished and make way for new development. You can read all about it here

The playground seen in the sketch which I cropped on the left is also iconic. It was called the Dove Playground designed by a very senior HDB architect in 1979. The same architect also designed the other iconic playgrounds in Singapore - the Dragon playground in Toa Payoh. I sketched it here. The Dove Playground will be demolished too but the Dragon Playground will remain.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

February Sketchwalk

The lights have already gone out on this 59-year-old enclave of Singapore Improvement Trust (SIT) flats built before our island nation became independent.

This is a final chance to capture the modernist architecture of the estate, albeit vacant and in a state of abandon, silent except for gawking visitors.

We will rendezvous at the playground, from where you can spread out and explore the neighbourhood.

9:30 AM

12:30 PM

Dakota Crescent Playground
Block 10 Dakota Crescent
Singapore 390010
*we will both start and end here

Dress for the weather. See you there!

Sunday, February 19, 2017

It's a Wrap for Term 4

I taught two classes of Early Childhood Studies and these students were very responsive. Teaching tip: one of my rules set up on day one with the classes is "if you find my lessons boring, please pretend to be enthusiastic, I need you to motivate me too!".

Sunday, February 05, 2017

Thursday, January 26, 2017

January Sketchwalk

It's the first sketchwalk of 2017, and also the first day to usher in the Year of the Rooster!

We're going to Chinatown, and will be starting from the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Museum, and ending at Chinatown Point. Along the way, while the streets and business might be quiet, there's still plenty to draw, especially the conserved shophouses with decorations put up for the Lunar New Year.


Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Museum
9:30 am

Chinatown Point
12:30 pm

This session is kindly led by Pocholo. See you there!

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Punggol Sketchwalk

HDB has been a long time partner with Urban Sketchers Singapore with several collaborative projects. This latest one we participated in the official opening of Punggol Square the Discovery Cube overlooking the gorgeous Punggol Waterway waterfront. Minister Teo Chee Hean graced the occasion and we hosted him at our USKSG exhibition booth.

Wednesday, January 04, 2017

first sketch of the new year 2017


I keep the tradition of sketching on the first day of the new year and here is a sketch of Rochor Centre which will be demolished this year to make way for new roads. There are only around 5 households left and they are old residents who are given extension of time to move out by mid Jan. I personally feel very sad to see Rochor Centre go because it is one of the earliest mixed commercial and public housing projects by the government. Singapore's Rochor Center to me has the potential to be rejuvenated like London's Barbican Estate but I guess nothing stays long enough in Singapore to become memories, heritage etc etc.

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

December Sketchwalk

On the very last day of 2016, we'll be sketching along and around Hill Street, with the stunning Hill Street Police Station as the centrepiece.

We will start off at the Old Hill Street Police Station, then pop over to the iconic red-and-white fire station, before spreading out to beautifully conserved buildings such as the Armenian Church, The Freemasons Hall, The Philatelic Museum, and Peranakan Museum.

We'll end outside the old Capitol Theatre, to share the sketches done and cool off/take shelter in the newly conserved complex.

See you before 2017 rolls in!

9:30 am
Old Hill Street Police Station
140 Hill Street
Singapore 179369

12:30 pm
Capitol Theatre
11 Stamford Rd, Capitol Piazza
Singapore 178884

Join lucky draw for Dec 2016's sketchwalk at Hill Street!

Sunday, December 04, 2016

Asia Link Sketchwalk in Bangkok

LEFT : On the left was the empty Seawhite Concertina Sketchbook I brought for my recent sketching trip. I attended the Asia Link Sketchwalk from 24 to 27 Nov 2016 in Bangkok and extended my Bangkok trip from 28 Nov to 1 Dec, 2016 after the event. I completed two Seawhite Concertina Sketchbooks that I bought in London with the help from Anne Marie Percival, a fellow sketcher from Manchester when I visited London, Manchester and Liverpool for the 7th Urban Sketchers Symposium in July this year. I want to buy more but the shipping cost is just too high so I have to go back to my usual Moleskine Japanese Album.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

November Sketchwalk at Beauty World

While most of the sketchers will be up in Bangkok for the long weekend of artistic madness, we're going to an old section of Singapore which is seeing a lot of changes.

There's Beauty World Centre, Bukit Timah Shopping Centre, and the hustle and bustle along Jalan Jurong Kechil. You can explore the area via Google Street View to familiarise yourself ahead.

9:30 am
12:30 pm

We will both start and end at the street level of Beauty World MRT Station Exit C, which is really near the Bukit Timah 7th Mile Market, where you can grab breakfast before the sketchwalk, and lunch after we do our sketch showdown.

See you there!

Giveaway Contest for November 2016 Sketchwalk at Beauty World. More details at

Sunday, November 13, 2016

sketches from UK trip


I only realize I have not posted any sketches here from my UK trip in July 2016. Here is one sketch at Covent Garden, London.

Friday, November 04, 2016

Inktober - mission completed

I am an urban sketcher but I also love doodling from imagination, often without references. For the very first time, I gave myself a task to do Inktober this year and tried to doodle underwater creatures for the challenge. I have no time to scan page by page for the entire month of October so I just took photographs with my phone camera and posted them on my Facebook. Click the image to see them all on Facebook.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Huge mural project

Photo Credit: Yuen Kit Mun

100% made in Singapore. We have the capability. Now everybody knows about it, this is my contribution. it's a huge mural panel at Basement 2, Centrepoint Mall. First of its kind in material and size because it is direct digital print on aluminium panels. No, I did not paint this on site. You can see it once you enter the mall from the MRT station via 313@Sommerset. I will need time to do the documentation on processes later.

Other artists who are involved in this are: Francis Theo, Ignatius Yeo and Tony Chua, all members of Urban Sketchers Singapore but this is not an Urban Sketchers project, it all started from a story line like this: Once upon a time, TIA met up with her old schoolmate from School of Architecture at Temesek Poly.......

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

October Sketchwalk

It's going to be a festive weekend with Deepavali/Diwali falling on Saturday, so we're going to visit the narrow and bustling streets of Little India looking for colourful scenes to put on paper.


Start (Briefing)
9:30 AM
City Square Mall (above Farrer Park MRT station)
Kitchener Road entrance steps

End (Show n Tell)
12:30 PM
Indian Heritage Centre

See you there!

Join the giveaway contest!

Link to the lucky draw giveaway contest:

Sunday, October 02, 2016

Inktober #02

This is done with the Pental black brush pen.

Saturday, October 01, 2016

My first Inktober

This is the first time that I take part in Inktober. I have so many different types of sketchbooks, pens and colours that I bought or gifted laying pretty on my bookshelves, I need to either give away or do something about it. It was last Saturday on 1 Oct that I took out the A6 size sketchbook I got from Royal College of Art in 2004 and doodled on it with a grey brush pen. I used to doodle underwater sea creatures during those office meetings in the day, all imaginative and nonsensical based on a grid. Let's do this again and see how far it takes.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

September Sketchwalk announcement

For the session this coming Saturday, we visit Peck Seah / Tras Street, where some huge shophouses stand proudly against an ever climbing skyline.

9:30 am
Tanjong Pagar MRT Station
Exit A

There's a field like place by the side near the temple. And early birds can have their breakfast across the street at the coffeeshop or food centre.

Peck Seah and Tras Street, plus Tanjong Pagar Road, run parallel with lots of beautiful shophouses to catch your eye, and we'll move north towards Duxton.

12:30 pm
Flor Patisserie
2 Duxton Hill
Singapore 089588

We will end here, and those who wish to can enjoy Francis Theo's current exhibition of sketches done of Pulau Ubin.

Join the giveaway contest, thanks to Parka!

Link to the lucky draw giveaway contest:

Monday, September 19, 2016

What I was busy with

Thursday, September 01, 2016

Wood: Re-Purposed