Monday, November 20, 2006

Marriage Takes Three

I once thought marriage took
Just two to make a go,
But now I am convinced
It takes the Lord also.

And not one marriage fails
Where Christ is asked to enter,
As lovers come together
With Jesus at the center.

But marriage seldom thrives
And homes are incomplete,
'Til He is welcomed there
To help avoid defeat.

In homes where God is first
It's obvious to see,
Those unions really work
For marriage still takes three.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Art of Commercials

Been watching loads of youtube commercials for inspiration. Perhaps, the art director is more business savvy than the company, cuz he is able to think of the best way of advertising...

Beer Ad #1



Beer Ad #2



Phone Ad

Friday, November 17, 2006

A 2nd take on social issues and archi.

Sern Hong: "Something for all to ponder upon. This was what came to my mind as I was travelling around in Europe for the past 2 weeks. 'What I find interesting is about the topic of how powerful an architect can get and how fearful is an architect in trying to be politically correct in his visions. Also, architects for eons have been talking about "social engagement" but in reality, how successful is it? The ones holding the power to change are the developers and politicians. While architects are boosting their ego in their so-called conferences to 'change the world', the rest of the world are moving on. Maybe the response of architects to these proposals are too small to be noticed and probably all just talk.' "

Joshua: "Let me give a different perspective to that. I think we need to define for ourselves what we mean when we say we want to change things around us. Due to our training and the things we are involved in outside of architecture, many of us tend to be more socially conscious. However, social issues are more complex than we think they are. Some of these social issues are better handled by specialists form other professions. Some of these issues require years of research and understanding into the matter before a credible solution can be found. I’m doing my design thesis on an Autistic school. I wanted to explore how the built environment can better encourage and stimulate those who don’t learn the normal way, to learn better. But I realize that is not even possible to do within an 8 month thesis. After finding out more and visiting other autistic schools, I began to appreciate a little more why some people will say that the physical building does not matter as much as the heartware. Not that I agree totally with that statement therefore. But I think we cannot be too na├»ve in what we are trying to do also. My conclusion is really that the way to go is through collaborations. Getting people from other disciplines involved in the making of spaces will give us different perspectives on the matter. Maybe even a clearer perspective. The question really is, Are we ready to share that space with others? Are we ready to say that we don’t have all the answers? Are we ready to put aside our ideals (which might not be accurate in the first place) to accept others’ views so that we can find a better solution together?”

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Extracted this from my friend's email. Perhaps a 2nd take on this issue.

Existance.

A man went to a barbershop to have his hair cut and his beard trimmed. As the barber began to work, they began to have a good conversation. They talked about so many things and various subjects. When they eventually touched on the subject of God, the barber said: "I don't believe that God exists."

"Why do you say that?" asked the customer. "Well, you just have to go out in the street to realize that God doesn't exist. Tell me, if God exists, would there be so many sick people? Would there be abandoned children? If God existed, there would be neither suffering nor pain. I can't imagine a loving God who would allow all of these things."

The customer thought for a moment, but didn't respond because he didn't want to start an argument. The barber finished his job and the customer left the shop. Just after he left the barbershop, he saw a man in the street with long, stringy, dirty hair and an untrimmed beard. He looked dirty and unkempt. The customer turned back and entered the barber shop again and he said to the barber: "You know what? Barbers do not exist."

"How can you say that?" asked the surprised barber. "I am here, and I am a barber. And I just worked on you!" "No!" the customer exclaimed. "Barbers don't exist because if they did, there would be no people with dirty long hair and untrimmed beards, like that man outside."

"Ah, but barbers DO exist! That's what happens when people do not come to me."

"Exactly!" affirmed the customer. "That's the point! God, too, DOES exist! That's what happens when people do not go to Him and don't look to Him for help. That's why there's so much pain and suffering in the world."

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Revisting an Old Inspiration

Thanx guowei for your clip on Derek Redmond. It's one of the few clips that can move me to tears and it's good to re-watch it again... I just went for Nottingham Games (an annual sports event for singaporeans and msians, organised by U Notts) last saturday and took part in a friendly road race. Running 6km at 5 deg with shorts and singlet was bad enough and to make things worse, I didn't sleep the night before. Was aiming for 4th but came in 7th with a timing of 26 mins 50 sec, which was kind of pathetic, but hopefully I shall be smarter and wear more next year.

This clip brings out all the virtues of a sportsman, but more importantly, it reflects the real life. Would you still carry on after you fail? Being successful is recovering from failure while failure is being successful in things that don't matter.

Anyway, it's time to get my butt moving, been eating too much and sitting around infront of the comp too much. My plans of getting running dosages have been stalled for some time, and it's difficult to get it started but it has to start somehow.

Planning Theory = Solving Social Problems?

It's funny that alleviating poverty and social divides has been the talk of the town during the Venice Bienalle. There were heated arguements about the whole bienalle being a failure, as it only showcased urban policies and nothing architecture. A few question thus arises:

1. To what extend is architecture part of state level policy planning?
2. To what extend can architecture affect the social outcome of the city or villages?
3. To what extend should architects play politicians?

I guess these are very pertinent questions that we should try to answer and I can sadly say that most of the time, despite all the plannings and stuff, the social model may still fail. It's a hard slap on our profession, but I guess it may be the harsh reality that planning do not always materialise as how they plan. I guess we should go back to basics about serving people at the most basic and personal level. Now that I am writing a paper on urban problems, it is so easy to sink into planning theory or statistics. I am very interested and concerned about solving social issues in an architectural sense but whenever I ask myself when was the last time I actually volunteered and cared for the needy, it seems that my aims and actions do not match.

Updates.

Space.
Patterns.
Forms.
Geometry.
Structure.

Life has been revolving around these words and they are engulfing me, as a person. I've been lacking:

Love.

I have been neglecting my house mates, my friends, my parents, my family, evelyn, myself and god. No doubt my treshold level for stress is relatively high, but sometimes I just clamour for more time to love people, love things. It isn't that the stuff that I'm doing now isn't lovely, but revolving my life around archi is dangerous and seductive. It is seductive as archi itself draws reasoning and inspiration from life, every aspects of life, from social to political to economics. I can't just view the Cold War as just a political, social issue, I'm starting to view it in a spatial sense. 1989 is not about the fall of the berlin Wall anymore, it's about the destruction of the intelligent urban spatial configuration of Berlin. Even, the IDF reads architectural theory in their urban skirmishes with the Palestines. I can't just read social issues as purely social problems too, i would start thinking of them as urban issues. Even my trip to the Venice Bienalle was an academic one, everything was surrounding archi. Imagine the day when I analyse everything in my life in an archi form, that would be tragedy. Although I love the wholeness of this field, I fear for the isolation and elitism that may arise from this whole set up. Given great reputation and the "non-existent" rules and regulations, it's easy to sink into being full of oneself. Although, it's a great school and the people are quite nice, but it's the environment that gives me the elitism feeling. This is probably one of the main reasons why I would wanna stay with some non-archi students. So that I can be more human.

But anyway, I shall post some links up for you guys to have some idea of what i've been doing these past 2 months.