Saturday, December 01, 2007

A Neu Creative 2008: Reinvent & Rebuilt

" Becoming an art director does not require years of art director school, even if one existed. It does however, demand a smattering of many competencies derived from varied educational and work experiences. Certain art directors are better at photography or illustration, while others are more adept with motion or three-dimensional space (3D), but overall, to be a good art director one must know how to delegate - who to call for best work to achieve the final product, which is ultimately the result of C O L L A B O R A T I O N "

- Stever Heller, The Education of Art Director, Allworth Press Publishing.

Interlude: 2008, Expression of A Self-Taught Designer

I exist to build upon and rework on things that inspire me. Most important is to share what I had discovered and collaborate with creative people around me; so I can achieve various final products. I want to restore what is left of our ancestors and what truly unique which most people have neglected and thought our roots was a redundant argument. I know at this moment, at this point, after 28 years, I do achieve something bigger than receiving awards, I don’t need to go to Yale to tell people what a person think, but most important is to let others understand what they can adapt, not by a fixed rationale that can be followed in books. It's also to let both of you and I understand and appreciate the talent that God has given us and channel to various products for either living and other social contributions. This is not only by words, but practically I do execute it and I'm able to understand WITHOUT following what people like rather to create their own style and identity.

When I talk about being a designer, I would not prefer to say that I am a mainstream designer, I want to be different. I want to be called as a '
neo-soul' designer. And that is why today I am known for my identity. Most people tried to deny what I do due to the level of envious (constantly bitchin') because I am capable of scoring each field well, not to sound very swaggering but rather fulfilled, positive and certain of my capability as a human, and this talent, came from Above (Praise God!). Every composition of my designs or artworks is written like music. It's how you arrange the bass, percussion, keyboard, piano, guitar and the melody.

Fascinating Nusantara

For all that I know, and ensure, I want to remain on carrying the oriental elements in my artwork because it's simply beauty and unique that not all Malaysian or any new young artists or designer do. I am very much serious about what I stand for, and I try to go as deep as possible, not only to study on Malay Wood Carving or Batik, but to go back to the history of Majapahit, back in the 14th Century, and the rest of the history of South East Asia. I managed to buy a lot of books covering from arts and history, and due to my several meet-up with Dr. Zubin, I gain more knowledge and interest. That's why I want to visit Angkor Watt in early 2008. Few months back when I was heavily involve on the Interactive Kiosk development for MOSTI Angkasawan Programme, I manage to study about Seaweed. To my surprise, my mind had been broaden even more, and how excited I am to see my organic creation is similar to the studies of seaweed, such as the Chadophora, Dumontia Contorta, Turner and much more.

The debate is very simple, (in Bahasa Melayu): "bila bangsa lain mula bercerita tentang kepakaran mereka menyelidik mengenai asal usul nenek moyang kita, mulalah kita yang Melayu panas satu badan, walhal punca utamanya datang dari kita, kerana kita mengendahkan dan memperkecilkan keindahan budaya kita. Orang luar sibuk terkial-kial menyelidik tentang seni dan budaya kita, bahkan kita teragung-agung dan menjilat budaya orang lain (European whatsoever). Apakah persoalannya bila kita mengikut aliran Bahaus, kita diiktiraf sebagai pereka yang ada kelas? Takkan ke mana jua. Jadi, fikir-fikirkan lah, dan sila beringat-ingat tentang kekayaan budaya kita yang ada, yang terunggul unik". Learn it well. Even a good mentor of mine, Mr. Joshua Davis reminded us how beautiful and rich our culture is.

What is Srivijaya?

Srivijaya, Sriwijaya, Shri Bhoja, Sri Boja or Shri Vijaya (200s-1300s) was an ancient Malay kingdom on the island of Sumatra which influenced much of the Malay Archipelago. Records of its beginning are scarce while estimations range from the 3rd to 5th centuries AD, but the earliest solid proof of its existence dates from the 7th century; a Chinese monk, I-Tsing, wrote that he visited Srivijaya in 671 for 6 months; the Kedukan Bukit Inscription is dated 683.The kingdom ceased to exist between 1200 and 1300 due to various factors, including the expansion of Majapahit.In Sanskrit, sri means "shining" or "radiant" and vijaya means "victory" or "excellence".
Life Updates

Yesterday, I went for dinner at TheCurve after I met my doctor (again, my digestion disorder problem due to heavy stress lately). So, I went to Pet Safari in Ikano later, and to found out that they have 'Sugar Glider' for sale. Now, I have a big obsession on these cute-ys after watching 'Samurai Champloo' which reminds me of the cute Momo in the anime's character and right after seeing them for the first time in a pet shop in Malacca city when I was with Martin Gomez and my friend Roul. I immediately told them I would like to book two of them, because they are so adorable. Seeing them makes me so happy and joyful so I decide to buy them in pairs. Since I didn't have cash with me, I told the supervisor that I will be picking them tomorrow evening. So on 1st of December, right after my first ever, 13 year of high school reunion in Lemon Cafe at Mines Shopping Centre, I went straight to Ikano. I even met my colleagues (of MDeC) at Starbucks and drop by a camera shop to get my 50mm (f1.8) lens for my Canon. Then I went straight to Pet World. And there, both of them sleeping in the food container (orang melayu kata tapuwear kecik).

Meeko and the late, Bambee. Both are two (3) months old, originally to know that they came from Australia and Papa New Guinea. Sugar Glider (Glider Possum) lives up to 10 years (I heard 15 years max) and can grow up to 7-9 inches long (ala, cam besar squirrel). Americans call 'em Flying Squirrel. They eat apple, strawberries and other fruits but they can also eat small insects (but I ain't put any of that in the cage). Last few days, we entertained Meeko at the living room with my aunt and my grandma (Opah). Opah was so happy to see the sugar glider. Meeko is hyperactive at night, even jump on my face when I carried him around! But unfortunate accident, Bambee (female) passed away on the 17th of December. I don't want to discuss further but I felt the lost and now leaving Meeko alone. But I’m getting a new bigger cage and few more (if my budget permits lah..).

View this video (Me & Meeko)

Equipped and Ready to Rock and Roll!

With the new
HP Pavillion desktop PC with 320 GB (truly awesome!), Apple 15.4" Macbook Pro, Sony HDE-SR5E handy cam and few new lens for my Canon SLR, 2008 will be more productive year for me to gain back my creative experiments. I already discussed with few notable photographers like Syahrin Aziz, Kieren Kuek for special collaboration

Officially an Art Collector

On the 7th of December, I went to Norhaslinda Nordin’s art exhibition in Kebun Mimpi, Bangsar with Dr. Zubin. I remember 2 years back, I had my work exhibited together with Linda at Gema Rimba, Bukit Tuanku. I had an eye for Linda’s artwork because her stroke are very sweet and serene. Her composition of work is cool and the colors are just nice (for me) and I believe some of Linda’s artwork are inspired by my guru, Jailani Abu Hassan. Jai taught me a lot in exploring composition and colors. It’s because of his teaching had make me well verse in color composition, using harmonic colors. Linda is actually a very junior of mine from UiTM, and she had climbed very rapid after winning few competitions.

Well, Linda had made me an art collector that night (malas nak title art buyer), because I got so impressed with her work that I even bought two of her artwork. I will buy more artwork of her in the coming future, and I’m looking forward to buy artworks of my favorite, favorite artist, Mohammad Noor Mahmud. By far, he’s the most high profile and identical artist in Malaysia to carry the batik motive in his paintings. (gila sawan tengok artwork Mohd Noor!).

Talk about UiTM juniors, I would like to talk about two UiTM juniors from the Graphic Department. Now, picture above is me with two UiTM students, Hazlynda & Firdaus. They had invited me over for an interview for their project paper, and that project paper was the case study of ‘Muid Latif’. I was truly flattered with both of them, to be able to bare their patience with my busy schedule. Nevertheless, I’m excited to know that few weeks ago both of them emailed me and informed that they had scored A+ for the project, and Hazlynda was nominated for Dean’s list. So congrats to both of them!

Last minute swiping sessions

I couldn't resist myself to get the G1 Transformers Ultra Magnus right in front of my eyes after I bought Nightwatch Optimus Prime three (3) days ago. I went to the shop called Area 51 Toys same level as MacAsia in One Utama. Before that, on my way to the shop, I drop by to Tower Records to check if my girl's CD, Jill Scott: Volume III is re-stock, since it's hard to find one! Even a friend of mine's CD, Imran Ajmain is impossible to find one on the rack. So as I was flippin' on the CD, I found a very very interesting cover art. It look so Indonesian-band because they are more identical, especially indie ones. So I bought the album and soon to find out the illustrator is none other than Darbotz!

Darbotz is a cool friend of mine when I met him back in Jakarta, and also in Singapore at the DesignEdge 2005. He's art direction for Agrikulture is simply blast-fully out of this world. This band's latest album is called 'Dawai Damai' which I encourage you guys to buy, especially those who like funk experimental electronicas. The album is absaf'*%inglutely amazing. It moves you to that weird creative drive that you can wake up at 2 am to do non-stop illustration or artwork. Very hypnofunk!

Today's Interview Session

Q: How serious you want to improve in your photography?
A: I want to do more editing. More hard-work, more tone-mapping, more HDR, more paranomic shots, more lightings, more space, more layers, and more equipments especially lenses.

Q: who are your most inspiration in photography?
Danielle Levitt and Dave Hill, nuff said! ;)

Q: what about art & design communication? who are the ones who inspired you from day one?
The late Ismail Zain, Mohd Noor, Tan Jin Ho, Yazid (Zid), Aadi Salman, Shieko, Thalia & Ari, Joshua Davis, Drew Europheo, Yugop, John Leigh (Karborn), Mike Young & Marcus Erricson (Subdisc).

Q: Muid, what is Your Aim in 2008?
A: To be able to develop an interactive website with my oriental style. I'm currently short-listing potential clients and hope I can brink 'da funk' in 'traditional' design back in the 21st Century through new media revolution.