October 12, 2008

PSFK Asia Conference 2008

Yesterday was the PSFK Asia conference in Singapore at the Asian Civilizations museum where I volunteered for a day as a speaker's assistant, which is actually just a fancy name for backstage help. I heard about PSFK only after I had been nominated by my lecturer for this conference but what I have learnt in the last 48 hours has been an eye opener.

The conference & the volunteers

The conference had some remarkable speakers and stimulating panel discussions about emerging design trends in Asia. This is specially relevant to me this semester at college as I'm working on a project that would (hopefully) predict the future of branding. To start off there was the Singapore snapshot - a discussion between a few of the leading local talent (Chris Lee, Asylum and Jackson Tan, Phunk studio) and some guest panelists. I couldn't catch all of the talk but some parts of what I could hear were very interesting to me. Jackson Tan spoke about the lack of "hunger" in Singapore amongst students and I feel this is kind of true. Maybe it's just my opinion but I feel that there are very few students who actually take initiative to try harder at getting better. There are many cases where I've heard of friends who switched careers once they were done with their diplomas. To me, this is arguably the single most foolish mistake anyone can commit. Why bother studying and slaving over a diploma that you're never going to pursue in your career right? Anyway I seem to be digressing.

Some of the other speakers at the conference were Daryl Arnold(with Profero, who spoke about using the Internet as a new medium to sell things to odinary people), Colin Nagy, Andrew Hopping and Mark Dytham who spoke about the benefits of engaging the employees from all the parts of a company inorder to drive innovation citing the examples of NASA and Klien Dytham architecture's PechaKucha night.

Then there were Nick Barham (Weiden+Kennedy, Shanghai), Floydd Wood & Jerry Clode(Flamingo internation) whose talks were about the emerging Chinese markets and trends among their youth. In the second talk, Jerry Clode gave examples of Asian cultures having a great influence on their youth's value systems. He spoke about the "retro" relation to design in China where the youth now prefer to buy products that celebrate the essence of their culture rather than wear mass produced clothing - a line of t-shirts that had graphics of the old school chalk board drawings of boys and girls but in a more contemporary context.

Jerry & Floydd's speech

After lunch were some very exciting panel discussions. The first being the creator class consisting of Piers Fawkes(PSFK), Paul Tan(POOL), Jason Anello(Yahoo) and Brian Tiong(B-side). They spoke about the emergence of a new generation of designers who do not restrict themselves in terms of a typical desk job and about how there are younger creatives who become entrepreneurs very early on in their careers - the AWE5OME network of creatives based in Singapore. This was particularly very close to my heart as this is something I aspire to be someday after I finish my studying.

Jason and Paul at the panel

The next panel was a discussion on youth trends in Asia and the impact they will have on the global markets. The panelists were Achara Masoodi(Mindshare), Micheal Keferl(CScout, Tokyo), Sonal Dabral (Bates 141), moderated by Piers Fawkes. Being part of an Asian culture myself, I could relate to some of the trends that were being discussed - about wanting to be from a generation of 'doers', wanting to be different and yet maintain the essence of the culture we belong to.

The next few talks were my personal favourites of the day. Charles Ogilvie(Panasonic) spoke about innovation in in-flight service, re-looking at how to make the flight experience more memorable through finding the right insights. He gave the example of Virgin American airlines whose cabin was re-modelled and designed to have state of the art technology, mood lighting and a more personal feel to it rather than the typical cramped seats.

Achara & Rob at Superfamous(after party)

This was followed by Rob Campbell(Sunshine/M&C Saatchi) who spoke about how the greatest creatives change fate not just create ads. He gave some great examples such as Tesco supermarkets that continually find new insights everyday to make shopping a fun experience rather than a chore (shopping carts equipped with DVD players to keep the children occupied). I think this kind of mentality should definitely be encouraged amongst designers today. More than designing something 'pretty' I feel we should be designing something 'smart', that has potential to change the way we experience the product itself.

Finally the last talk was by Jeff Ng(Staple Design) who spoke about his career path which is a series of creative ideas, hardwork and being at the right place at the right time. I couldn't enjoy the entire talk as I had to assist outside (I was afterall part of the help!) but I liked the approach he has in his design projects which he discussed at the beginning.

All in all the conference was a great experience and mingling with the speakers afterward at the post-conference party was the icing on the cake for me. Jeff Squires from the PSFK team was the friendliest person I met at the conference who managed to arrange a great conference in such a short span (3 months). Hats off to him for pulling that off! I hope I get lucky and get to attend a few more such conferences that may help me be a better designer someday.

For more info on the conference goto www.psfk.com

September 25, 2008


I blame the distance.

It keeps us apart.

Doesn’t allow me to say

What is deep within my heart.

There were times,

I used to think,

life without you was

not worthy of living

Not long ago

when we were still young,

secret promises we had made,

silly songs we had sung.

Then there was the time

when I had to leave,

even though I knew I would soon see you,

after some reprieve.

Emptiness swallowed me whole

It broke. It cracked.

A seemingly strong trust

I never imagined we lacked.

Imagined isolation,

even when you were near.

Lonely nights have passed,

and I’ve shed many a tear.

Words and feelings,

They come to my lip.

But in anger and jealousy,

the balance seems to tip.

Love is consuming they say,

It overpowers rational thought.

Makes you say things you don’t mean.

A lot.

Pride is company,

Ego is my friend.

But always empty handed I stand,

in the end.

I would ask your pardon,

if I only knew how.

All I would say is,

‘Come back to me now’

But in my reality,

idle wishing must end.

A deep sadness remains inside me,

I think I just lost my friend.

This is not a call.

This is not a plea.

I cannot beg you anymore,

to come back and be with me.

My soul wrenches in pain

It boils. It burns.

But the decision should be yours,

especially where I’m concerned.

Not because of a past,

or a future that we might share.

Because you need me.

Because you still care.

June 20, 2008

Confessions of a recent blog addict

That's what I've become. A reader of Blogs. Mainly this one : http://krishashok.wordpress.com
Hilariously funny blogs by this English punt :D is an excellent way to pass time in office [If you're doing anything as boring as I am - pathing out images in Photoshop *_* this is the only way out!]

There are some excellent blogs all around, which make me feel (sheepishly) silly as I have happily been ignoring my own. Ha! If I had the will power of an ant I could do a better job of posting interesting things. But since I don't :D you can be happy with this.

Below are some pics from my visit to the Aviva Badminton Open 2008 held here in Singapore last week. I'm not an avid fan of any watching any sport, I prefer playing really. Its fun screaming at the Television but it's better to go out there and "Just do it" ;)

This was a strange day for me. I was watching this game on TV just before I left to go to the stadium. Must say, watching the game live is much more fun than on the TV. The intense atmosphere of the cheering crowds and the game itself, it was most excitiment I've had in days!

There was this mixed doubles game between Denmark and Indonesia, Whatte game I say! I finally understand why people pay good money to go to the stadiums and rather than watching on TV :) Although watching cricket with my family is a ritual when I am home. When my grandfather was alive it used to be my father, him and me yelling away at the TV while the cricket matches were on. I don't think it was just the game, but more than that, the "bonding" while watching the game that I always enjoyed.

But there is one sport that makes me wonder how people enjoy it at all? Golf. Seriously? It's just a guy putting a tiny ball into holes in the grass!! How much fun can that be? Yeah I know it probably insults every golfer's skills as I say this, but please, Golf is no where nearly as fun as Basketball (which happens to be my favourite) or even Cricket (test cricket is more fun than golf! ). Oh well maybe that's just my opinion.

Oh and here's a couple of doodles ( hehe.. I like the sound of that word :P ) that I doodled while I should have been photoshopping.

Its just this character I had in my mind. Okay so he happens to look a bit like my boyfriend :D
His birthday happens to be arriving soon, so I'm hoping I can make something interesting. Watch this space for more :)

June 15, 2008

Colour me crazy

What do you do when everything you want is against you? Its like that Allanis Morisette song, Ironic..thats what my life feels like. I started this blog to vent out my thoughts, not to anyone in particular. This is my online pensieve just like Dumbledore had his. Turns out that thoughts can be dangerous even when you don't intend it for anyone. Who'd have thunk it?

Anyway..If you are henceforth reading my blog and get offended by it..my apologies in advance. Your problems in life might be bigger, more serious. But the point is they are yours. If I wanna vent.i will VENT!! So live with it. Speaking of which, here's a picture i drew..I call it "feeling blue"..

Other than painting my feelings ..this is wat I do best when I'm sad.. I cry..then I eat chocolate cry some more..then finally fall asleep..How do you vent your frustrations? A friend suggested punching the pillow. I tried it, but denting my pillow didn't quite rid me of all the tension. Screaming into the pillow..now that's a better way the only disadvantage being you might damage you vocal chords. Some people get drunk, some just punch walls. OUCH.

I read somewhere that dressing yourself up is therapy for feeling better. Is that why we shop for so much when we are depressed? I read in a magazine once that wearing yellow is supposed to put you into a better mood. Does it really? By that logic, looking at white should bring you peace? Colour association with mood has always been fascinating to me.

http://www.jacksonpollock.org/..this site is awesome..you should totally try it if you're bored or want something to distract you. Left clicking helps change the colour and space bar is to clear the screen.

Well I better go stare at something yellow then. Or maybe green. Until then Toodles!

June 02, 2008

Inner workings

So lately I've been going through a really hard time with my "love" life..(lets not go there)..but what has actually been a hard and painful thing has become an eye-opener for me. I am somewhat more aware of the world i'm actually living in. It all started with a bad argument..which got me thinking about everthing in my life right now. What have I done in the past one year or the past 1 month for that matter, which I can look back on and be happy about?

For the past 3 years my life has been about someone else. I stopped worrying about my health, my looks, the world around me, it has been about one person and all that I felt when I was with that person. Its scary how easily I let myself be so involved in something and that I didn't see the "realities" of anything else in my life.

Lately, I've started to read the world news more often (I dont have acess to a newspaper but I manage to update myself on news online). Its really mundane actually, its just news, but for me, its a breakthrough. I've actually "looked" beyond my own crap! So in the spirit of looking beyond...I was watching this documentary on tv today, called "Supersize Me".

Its all about the fast food diets that the people today live on. This film is really an eye opener for me. Although I'm not obese, I've struggled with wieght issues since I was 10. Like most Indian households, I am always compared to other cousins who are thinner. I admit it hurts, but the more it happened, the more I learned to be thickskinned about it. But today its dawned on me. Its not about thin. Its about being healthy really. I've lived 21 years on this planet, and hope to live atleast 60 years more. Thats 60 x 365 = 21,900 days atleast!! I've realised its just not enough, what I've been doing lately.

I've been obsessing over some parts of my life and let them get so big that I've forgotten what I can do as a person. I dont want to go through life wearing a blinder of mundane stuff like work/money/family. Yeah all that's important, but its not ALL we exist on this planet for right? I mean..there are issues like global warming, natural disasters, wars, obesity..there's so much happening, but all we focus on is our own idiosyncrasies. Shouldn't we all be more than mere robots, doing the same stuff we do always? I know its hard to do different things all the time, but as a designer I find things stifling me really easily. So to get out of my boring routine, I've decided to do a few things differently in my daily life atleast. It may be insignificant to the world, but atleast to me, its "something".
1)Caring a lot more about my health and well being :)
2)Switching off all the light/socket switches everyday before i leave for work (don't know if it will solve global warming, but it will certainly not help speed it up.)
3) Read more (why did I ever stop?!!!)
4) Keep my eyes open. (Look, and not just see things)

I know may sound over enthusiastic right now, but hey, life's too short. Gotta keep doing something new. Why get stuck in a rut right?

May 18, 2008

In case you were wondering

This is what I really look like :P

Hello world

Hello world! I'm new @ this blogging stuff, but I'm gonna try to keep my posts sensible (I'm prone to rambling on about things) and blog as often as I can (I'm also lazy *_* ). To start off, ummmm...damn my minds blank now..oh well..I'll post some of my work soon..please tell me what you think