The Chimerical Castle (Image Heavy)

I guess now is a good time to finally share these books which i'd been keeping for some time.

Welcome to the dark side of children's book illustrations.

Yep I found these books on a supermarket shelf opposite those of kids' coloring books. Totally puzzled me why they were there in the first place cos they seem a lil to freaky for kids. Well maybe kids these days are more sadistic *shrugs*.

I'm loving the illustrations and doll images. Plus, they were cheap too (bought both books at a total cost of about S$10). If you take a look down at Basheer Bookstore at Bras Basah Complex, illustration books costs more like ridiculously wayyy more.

Anyway, here are some page scans from both books:

This is the illustrator, one of the pioneers of such style in China.

Found some of these pics by googling a URL link given in the books. Did it some time ago so i forgot his name :x But the link's dead anyway but i will update his name when i rediscover it.

Got my roomie to translate some of the Chinese poetry in there and turns out they are somewhat sad and dark. One image shows a pair of free hanging legs probably a doll hung on a tree among other mysterious ones which i didn't scan in.

One thing's definitely missing in his illustrations.... BLOOD. There's no blood.

Oh yeah i forgot they are just dolls.

I've been tasting blood in my mouth almost everyday for the past three days after a surgery. Kinda getting used to the stitches on my gums and inner cheek and it's quite an experience to have the right side of my tongue numb for a day. My lower lip on the right still haven't gotten back all its feeling. Gives a tingle-ish sensationwhen touched. Lolz.

Ok that ends my rant for the day. Have a great weekend everyone!


Doll-like Cubism

Today's sketch/doodle.

Perfection... is not simply fixing what's broken, it's way beyond that, infinitely.

Perfection is not = happiness.

Perfection does not exist in this world because we're only humans.

Perfection is only a word to describe an achievable standard.

Perfectionists are the most anal people on earth (gee... sounds like me).

Perfection is prejudiced towards defects.

Perfection is not why life is worth living for.

My rant ends here for tonight.
Feel free to add on.


"In A Grove" Illustrations

Attempted to depict his death in a beautiful graceful manner as though he's fallen into a deep slumber so that he can forget the tragedy and betrayal that happened. Eternally resting in peace.

The woodcutter is the one who discovered the body in the grove though the account he gave is questionable since he is suspected of stealing the dagger or murder weapon.

The story is from a novel,"In A Grove," by Akutagawa Ryunusuke. Below is the plot summary.

The story opens with the account of a woodcutter who has found a man's body in the woods. The woodcutter reports that man died of a single sword slash to the chest, and that the trampled leaves around the body showed there had been a violent struggle, but otherwise lacked any significant evidence as to what actually happened. There were no weapons nearby, and no horses- only a single piece of rope, a comb and a lot of blood.

The next account is delivered by a traveling Buddhist priest. He says that he met the man, who was accompanied by a woman on horseback, on the road, around noon the day before the murder. The man was carrying a sword, a bow and a black quiver. All of these, along with the woman's horse, a tall, short-maned palomino, were missing when the woodcutter discovered the body.

The next person to testify is a homen (a released prisoner working under contract to the police, similar to a bounty hunter). He has captured an infamous criminal named Tajomaru. Tajomaru was injured when thrown from a horse (a tall, short-maned palomino), and he is carrying a bow and a black quiver, which do not belong to his usual arsenal. This proves, he says, that Tajomaru was the perpetrator. Tajomaru was not carrying the dead man's sword, however.

The next testimony is from an old woman, who identifies herself as the mother of the missing girl. Her daughter is a beautiful, strong-willed 19-year-old named Masago, married to Kanazawa no Takehiro- a 26-year-old samurai from Wakasa. Her daughter, she says, has never been with a man other than Takehiro. She begs the police to find her daughter.

Next, Tajomaru confesses. He says that he met them on the road in the forest, and upon first seeing Masago, decided that was going to rape her. In order to rape Masago unhindered, he separated the couple, luring Takehiro into the woods with the promise of buried treasure. He then stuffed his mouth full of leaves, tied him to a tree and fetched Masago. When Masago saw her husband tied to the tree, she pulled a dagger from her bosom and tried to stab Tajomaru, but he knocked the knife out of her hand, and he had his way with her. Originally, he had no intention of killing the man, he claims, but after the rape, she begged him to either kill her husband or kill himself- she could not live if two men knew her shame. She would leave with the last man standing. Tajomaru did not wish to kill the Takehiro in a cowardly manner, so he untied him and they had a swordfight. During the duel, Masago fled. Tajomaru dispatched the man and took the man's sword, bow, and quiver, as well as the woman's horse. He says that he sold the sword before he was captured by the bounty hunter.

The second-to-last account is that of Masago. According to her, after the rape, Tajomaru fled, and her husband, still tied to the tree, looked at her with great disdain. She was ashamed that she had been raped, and no longer wished to live, but she wanted him to die with her. He agreed, or so she believed- he couldn't actually say anything because his mouth was still stuffed full of leaves and she plunged her dagger into his chest. She then cut the rope that bound Takehiro, and ran into the forest, whereupon she attempted to commit suicide numerous times, she said, but her spirit was too strong to die. Of all of the accounts of the crime, the woman's is arguably the least believable, and in great discordance with the other two. At the end of her confession, she weeps.

The final account comes from Takehiro's ghost, as delivered through a spirit medium. The ghost says that after the rape, Tajomaru persuaded Masago to leave her husband and become his own wife, which she agreed to do under one condition: He would have to kill Takehiro. Tajomaru became enraged at the suggestion, kicked her to the ground, and asked Takehiro if he should kill the dishonorable woman. Hearing this, Masago fled into the forest. Tajomaru then cut Takehiro's bonds and ran away. Takehiro grabbed Masago's fallen dagger and plunged it into his chest. Shortly before he died, he sensed someone creep up to him and steal the dagger from his chest. Throughout, it is obvious that he is furious at his wife.

Via here [also has links to additional readings and interesting info].


Delicate Valentine's Day & Love Pop-Up Cards + 8 yrs Anniversary

Recently bought some lovely pop up cards! They have intricate designs which are only possible to be cut out vis lazer-cutting and put together by hand.

Photographed these cards outdoors early in the morning and edited them to have a soft romantic feel.

How it opens up:

The front of the cards:

I'll probably visit the booth again sometime next week since my sis wants one too.

Yesterday was my 8 years Anniversary... which coincides with his mother's birthday as well. Nevertheless here was what i wore yesterday:

We've been together since we're like 14 or 15... Hoping to see more great years ahead =)


Philippine Neo-Realist Masterworks Gallery @ SAM

Fernando Amorsolo (1892-1972)
Portrait of Fernando Zobel as a Teenager, 1945
Oil on wood
39 x 30.5 cm
Ateneo Art Gallery Collection

This is one of the very first few paintings i saw at the museum that day at the Singapore Arts Museum. Was very drawn towards how realistic it looks and how it seems to capture the emotion and character of the person. Even the style of the subject like his hairstyle and clothes can be identified with that particular era.

It's definitely better to look at all these paintings in real life and experience it face to face. How the light falls on the painting illuminating the texture and brushstrokes can really be seen and examined closely. It's really captivating.

Other portraits by Fernando Amorsolo.

In the Eye of Modernity: Philippine Neo-Realist Masterworks from the Ateneo Art Gallery

Hernando R. Ocampo (1911-78)
53-G (Beefsteak)
Oil on canvas
Ateneo Art Gallery Collection

Yup the title is beefsteak. Quirky isn't it?

How "Neo-Realists" artist came about.

Another painting by Hernando R. Ocampo.

Highly textured impasto.

Top:Hernando R. Ocampo
Isda at Mangga (Fish and Mango)
Oil on canvasboard
33.5 x 43 cm

Bottom:Manuel Rodriguez, St. (b,1917)
Still Life with Melon and Papaya
Encaustic on paper mounted on board
29.5 x 37 cm

Another painting by Manuel Rodriguez.

Looks like the cranes and poles of building being constructed.

Jose Joya (1931-95)
Granadean Arabesque
Oil on canvas
118 x 305 cm

"Joya was a leading exponent of Abstract Expressionism in the Philippines. Unlike Jackson Pollock's improvisatory approach to drip painting which translated the nervous syncopated energy of jazz, Joya added texture through thick swipes of impasto and gobs of paint riddled with gravel, rendering a broader, more sweeping gestural style."

Initially it looks like one of those abstract paintings with very expressive brushstrokes which is hard to decipher. However, I found an interpretation of the artwork which is that the colors are "inspired by the colors of summer in Granada, a region in Spain where the artist has visited while studying in Madrid" and Arabesque relating to the "Arabic ornamental design that consists of flowing lines".

After walking through the whole collection i could feel like there is a sense of wanting to break away from the academic way of doing paintings like those by Fernando Amorsolo as seen by the movement away from realism towards more expressive styles (e.g. Hernando R. Ocampo, Manuel Rodriguez, etc). This is probably to break away from their colonized past by the Spanish rule.

These are just a few artworks from the "In the Eye of Modernity: Philippine Neo-Realist Masterworks from the Ateneo Art Gallery".

Will probably update on the other galleries the next time i have the mojo to do so :)



Google-Translate-Chinese (Simplified) BETA Google-Translate-English to French Google-Translate-English to German Google-Translate-English to Italian Google-Translate-English to Japanese BETA Google-Translate-English to Korean BETA Google-Translate-English to Russian BETA Google-Translate-English to Spanish