Mahota Healthy Cooking Workshop With Joseph Schooling’s Mum

I had the privilege to attend a Healthy Cooking Workshop held at Mahota with May Schooling (mum of Singapore’s swim champion Joseph Schooling), sharing her experience of how to prepare quick and healthy meals to refuel and recharge her son before his swim.

After her demo on a quick cheesy sandwich, it was Chef Benson’s turn to prepare a healthy plant-powered smoothie which acts as a substitute for milo. It was a recipe created for his lactose intolerance son. However, the taste was not exactly like milo but still it tasted not that bad.

Next was sampling a version of Chef Benson’s healthy nasi lemak and watching how he mixed the spirulina protein bar. There was also a little hands on session for us with all the ingredients prepared. I started mixing everything with the glove provided, at the same time creating a little mess. With dates as its base, the spirulina protein bar was quite sweet though.

It was a fun workshop and I got to explore the beautiful interior of Mahota. Great place to wind up and chill or even shop around its retail segment for groceries!

Hosted by DBS, road to REGATTA 2018. 

Jewellery Design and Fabrication Short Course with Caratell

 
My fascination and curiosity in jewellery designing and production led me to sign up for the Jewellery Design and Fabrication short course/workshop with Caratell last year. It was held once a week from 7-10pm for about 4 months at Beacon International College. I did wondered why I was so greedy for skills and knowledge since I was also in the midst of attaining my part-time degree at the same time. Total fees I paid was S$1000.00 which excludes GST. Too bad at that point of time when I registered, the course was not yet made claimable under SkillFuture. 
 
The lessons were taught by Michael Koh, a jewellery designer as well as the boss of Caratell. A friendly and approachable lecturer who is always willing to impart his skills and knowledge to his students. My course mates, including myself would always bombard him with plenty of jewellery related questions from designs to costing to technical and practical stuffs. We even visited his outlet at United Square and also his jewellery production workshop as well.  
 
We all started off with basic sketching of what we would intend to produce. I basically stick to just using copper as my material (provided) since I did not want to risk investing into more expensive materials such as gold and silver which my other course mates did. Overall, I learnt about the processes from cutting shapes, annealing, polishing, craving, connecting joints, using moulds and more. It definitely wasn’t easy and it takes plenty of practise and years of experience to reach Michael Lao Shi’s (teacher) level of quality.  
Although it could be torturous during certain point of time such as filing (a lot) to smoothen sharp edges and fumes from the torch that kept irritating my eyes during the annealing process, I did learnt a lot from Lao Shi. I kept changing my mind on the design and ended up creating the abstract stacked ring that could fit nicely on my finger. Having hands-on sessions are always fun as I get to relish the moments of honing my crafting skills in the process.
 
 

Rasa Fiesta Singapura Part 2 and bartending workshops

 Picnic Wisma Atria
Rasa Fiesta Singapura Part 2 was held at Picnic Wisma Atria from 4th to 5th November 2017. What attracted me to attend this event was the variety of rum and series of workshops conducted by bartenders from all over the world.
Throughout the 2 days, many workshops were lined up and it was my first hands-on attempt with  concocting cocktails. The first experience was with the “Francis Drake” which contains Ron Abuelo 7 years rum, passion fruit puree and giffard cinnamon syrup. A rather tropical drink which was a mild mix of sweet and sour.
The following workshop attempt was “Strawberry Batida” which contains Brugal Anejo, BOLS strawberry, fresh strawberry, lime wedges and basil leaves. I quite liked the fruity taste and the fragrance of the basil leaves. Chatted with the friendly bartender and he shared some rum knowledge with me, such as rum pairs extremely well with tropical fruits such as coconut, pineapple and passion fruits.
My friend later on ordered a cup of “Spice Up You Life” that contains Chalong Bay Cinnamon. The garnish was an thin slice of apple with spices and the cocktail was fairly potent. For, me since I have low alcohol tolerance, I had the Caipirinha (blueberry and blackberry) and requested for less of the Maracatu used in the drink. I wasn’t expecting the drink to look so photogenic with its blue-reddish colour, garnished by the rose-cut strawberry, lime and blueberries. Not only appearance, the drink was bursting with fruity flavors, refreshing and easy to drink. The girl who prepared my drink (and strawberry) was so shy to pose for photo since my annoying friend teased her quite a bit.
Anyway, besides educating participants about different rum and their versatility, Rasa Fiesta Singapura Part 2 allowed us to explore/taste unique rum brands which might not be easily available in Singapore. Furthermore, the art of concocting a perfect rum cocktail showcased the skills of a bartender.  
Rasa Fiesta Singapura Part 2

Rasa Fiesta Singapura Part 2
A bottle of Ron Abuelo 7 years rum and cocktail “Francis Drake”

Rasa Fiesta Singapura Part 2

Rasa Fiesta Singapura Part 2
Rasa Fiesta Singapura Part 2
Rasa Fiesta Singapura Part 2
Rasa Fiesta Singapura Part 2

Rasa Fiesta Singapura Part 2
“Strawberry Batida” which contains Brugal Anejo

Rasa Fiesta Singapura Part 2
“Spice Up You Life” that contains Chalong Bay Cinnamon

Caipirinha (blueberry and blackberry) with a bottle of the Maracatu
Caipirinha (blueberry and blackberry) with a bottle of the Maracatu 
Rasa Fiesta Singapura Part 2

Arachnid Orchestra and Sketching Workshop at Gillman Barracks

I attended another workshop and exhibition at Gillman Barracks the other day. Unlike the previous workshop which focuses on acrylic painting, this time was on basic sketching.  
We have the privilege of having 2 instructors teaching us that day and it started off with a demo on how to breakdown (virtually) the body parts of the wooden figurine into different shapes. 
Its all about line drawing. Thick lines for the shadowy parts and thin line under the light. My friend and I were from design course in polytechnic and we easily got back the ‘feel’ of sketching we once had many years back. I was quite surprised that the auntie and her daughter who shared the same table as us could sketch rather well too! We definitely surprised our instructors!
The next exercise which was negative drawing was quite difficult for us since we were first timers. It was basically using white pencils on black paper. The shadows were to be represented by being shaded.
For the wooden man, we all drew the angle that was facing us resulting in such amazing series of men. Check out our combined drawings below!  

After our workshop session, we headed over to the Arachnid Orchestra Exhibit which was located at NTU Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore. It was by Berlin based artist Tomas Saraceno. Situated at the intersection between art and science, Saraceno’s artistic practice is an invitation to conceive alternative ways of knowledge, experience and interaction with others.
Plenty of research was done about these creatures and the exhibition was in a pitch black space lighted up by spotlights showcasing the art of nature itself. I would not want to go into details but feel free to admire these webs below.
Besides that, we were once again given a paper to draw these webs! It was really challenging since these webs proved to be a complicated mess of art.
We had to draw what we see and not what we knew. Concentration was a huge issue as once I looked down on my paper, I couldn’t remember where I last stopped at.
I wasn’t trying to draw lines this time. I was trying to draw textures. Many people just gave up or did not attempt to start at all. I tried my best at least before the time runs out.
It was a fun experience and I wouldn’t mind joining more jamming sessions in future!

ARNDT Tour and Acrylic Painting Workshop at Gillman Barracks

the cosmos is discos lust, 2015
Acrylic on French linen, 180 × 480 cm (overall)
The sun must be desperately trying to melt me as I made my way to Gillman Barracks. It started off with a short tour conducted around the ARNDT gallery (Block 9), with the staff sharing with us about the background of Del Kathryn Barton whom was the artist of this solo exhibition.
Barton is considered one of the leading artists of her generation, who won the prestigious annual portrait competition the Archibald Portrait Prize twice. 
Her paintings were mainly female humanoid forms or portraits and she used architectural pens directly on her canvases, which meant that there were no rooms for mistakes.
Her paintings surged with vitality from the vibrant colours she used. Upon a closer look, there were many repetitive patterns which meant either you complete the work or give up on it. The latter definitely was not her option.
Last but not least, The Nightingale and the Rose, (2014) was Barton’s animated short film which was a dark fairy tale of  unrequited love that premiered at the Berlin International Film festival this year.
Check out some pictures of Del Kathryn Barton’s artwork I took at the gallery below.
wild carrot dream, 2015
Acrylic on French linen, 160 × 140 cm
inside another land 1-15, 2015
Archival print on cotton rag with acrylic paint
58.5 x 83, with border 69 x 83 cm each 

come ride with me, 2015
Acrylic on French linen, 160 × 140 cm

within my pleats, 2015
Acrylic on French linen, 160 × 140 cm

the highway is a disco, 2015
Acrylic on French linen, 240 × 180 cm
(a portion of wild carrot dream)

After the tour, our group headed to block 9 for our acrylic painting workshop conducted by a painter.

We were all really eager and excited to get started since most of us were first timers and have not laid our hands on acrylic paint before. (Or even get dirtied by it.)

We were first briefed on the medium we were about to use which was acrylic paint, since the painter Del Kathryn Barton used it for her artworks.

We started off with the basic colours of red, yellow, blue, mixing them till we formed the colour wheel as shown below. (Black and white not part of the spectrum.)

We then learned the 6 common painting techniques and recreate them as shown within 15 minutes. It was a little rush in fact since the entire workshop including the tour was less than 3 hours.

The 6 techniques as follows (sample below):

-Impasto
-Sgraffito
-Glazing
-Dry Brush
-Sfumato
-Stippling

Last but not least, each of us was given a 8 x 8 inch canvas to sketch and paint a portrait. Portraits of people has always been my nemesis and so not my thing to begin with, especially the face. I wasn’t sure what was on my mind that day and I ended up painting a picture of an old man.

The real challenge was to input as many ‘freshly learned’ techniques as possible into our canvas.
My most obvious ones used were Impasto (beard), Sgraffito (hair) and Sfumato (background). It a was a hell load of fun painting and I experienced therapeutic moments and satisfaction!