Sunday, September 25, 2016

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Friday, September 9, 2016


I sometimes sneak an early run to the office; get in 6 km before dawn. Then sneak in a few hours to start a conversation with a floor plan, or to end one with some construction details, or something in between. Something constructive...

But most times something gets in the way; someone calling for breakfast, playing with the office cats or like last Sunday - thinking about stuff..
...thinking about MW's new house which he hasn't even bought. But thinking about it seemed more interesting and important than the "paying" jobs - this is the result. The result of an hour of putting things off. Half way through my sketches reminded me of a building I visited with Sam in Madrid - the Caxia Forum. Herzog added to the existing building with an inverted silhouette of itself, built in aged steel perhaps to reflect its former brick walls. In this building, the lowest floor is carved out to allow the street to come into the building and give the massive block an appearance of floating.

(added later)
When MW found out about this blog entry, he asked if the title was a dig at him. I said no, and realised that his reaction was from knowing the sarcastic me. I told him that I was referring to myself - putting off real work for imagined work. I them added - it could well have applied to him, seeing how long he has taken to decide on buying a house...

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Time on my hands

 I drew these sketches of Fort Magherita for Friends of the Sarawak Museum (FOSM). They were going to use them for their launching of the new Brooke Gallery, I was very busy yet quietly flattered. * Incidentally - I also learnt that the fort was named after Charles Vyner Brooke's wife, Margaret.

So, I put to practice what I tell my interns and colleagues - meet the date line first by putting something in. Book the place, get the conversation started (or going) and then if you're able - improve on the original item. And keep the conversation going again after that. That method of meeting date lines helped me get through architecture school relatively stress-free.

Several days after sending in the above sketches, I found myself with some time on my hands. A rare occasion. Which I put to good use by applying ink and wash over the original sketches. It brings out the forms a bit better and I like how the wash blurs the hard lines of the ball point pen.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Lantern Hotel

a retrospective sketch of our dinner venue
We had difficulty deciding where to have dinner after attending a talk at the Woods Bagot Aged Care presentation. I suspect we were all (the 3 men) trying desperately to think of a venue nearby that is nice and comfortable for HL.  While we were shuffling our feet and not coming up with ideas - HL decided for us, she said '..I want to eat Hokkien Cha..'

Which explains the sketch above - next to a drain and in an alley near Petaling Street, the noodles were ok, the company good and the conversation better. And that's the important thing, isn't it?

'..the pork crackling on our noodles is collagen, not fat..'

view from my breakfast terrace at the Lantern Hotel
Later that night, I checked into the Lantern Hotel on Petaling Street. We heard that it has been extensively published, so decided to have a look-see. For a RM 100, the rooms are clean but small; the LWC walls are neat but thin; the support spaces innovative but the staff indifferent; the breakfast basic but the coffee Illy; the streets nearby lively but smelly.

my breakfast terrace - photo courtesy of Grace Teoh

the main atrium is lit from a sky-light

According to the architect, the emphasis on natural lighting and ventilation meant that all the 'public' and circulation spaces faced outwards, while the air-conditioned guestrooms face the internal courtyard. As a result, the rooms do not have an outside view. This was compensated by the 'public' spaces, with their cafe tables, and reading niches, very much like the busy street below.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Un paseo after lunch

lunch matinee - we were taking in the theatre taking place around us as much as the food.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Postcards from the Edge

Recently, Urban Sketchers Kuching took part in a postcard exchange with the Hong Kong Urban Sketchers - each of us are assigned a partner, mine is a Grace Tam. I hope she gets my postcard in one piece. I sent mine 'naked' just as how postcards are designed to be sent. Not in envelopes protected from view..

I sent Grace a scene from my work neighbourhood, a view from the Drunken Monkey Bar towards the river which I sketched one evening after work. Drinking beers with Claudia, George, Fiona and Sam.

Last week, a postcard arrived from Hong Kong. I am not certain if Grace has received mine.