Friday, February 23, 2007

Promotional Post

What is the worth of an image, a piece of design? Is presentation important over the function? In the areas of my work, questions like these do often come up. Like users of a certain ancient text-driven Operating System, it is often thought that a tool is meant to be functional. Function is important, but so is your presentation. They come in a package.
So never under-estimate the power of design, and most of all the power of images. Images ease a user into an application, and makes the application less apprehensive, more user-friendly, more professional. Images conjure powerful associations with majesty, desperation, invokes hate, fear, greed, love, sympathy, and all emotions known to man and woman. Images project what you mean to say without saying it. It is like your body language to your viewer, who may be your reader, your user, and most importantly, your potential buyer.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Amazing Actionscript!

Games galore! These are screenshots of two games that I've created as part of the wedding CD. Done entirely in Flash and Actionscript 2.0, the two games are just half of the set of four games available to our guests.

Matchmaking is the name of the first, and the rules are played in the spirit of the popular Zookeeper (or Bejeweled if you like). The graphics background were designed in Photoshop. My wife took photographs of the gift cards and soft toy presents that I gave to her, and I did the rest of the touch-up in Photoshop.

The second game I named "A Moving Story", and the rules of the game are played in the spirit of the classic puzzle game, Sokoban. The background was part of a photograph posted on the Stock Exchange website, the rest of the graphics were designed by me. The levels, however, were originally designed by a fellow Sokobanner, David W. Skinner. You can find his website here.

Cartoon Character

This is a rendition of the bride and the groom in anime technicolor. :) The raw product was a rough sketch done in pencil. The source material was later scanned in and outlined in photoshop, using the Pen tool and various brush effects, especially the brush-fading effect. The cel-shaded coloring was done, again, entirely in Photoshop, with various effects such as hair highlights and shoe shines. Finally, the backdrop was put in place.

I used the drawing skills that I've picked up over the years for this. It's not nearly as professional as the professional artists can produce, but the outcome turned out rather pleasing. Kawaii ne?

Thursday, February 08, 2007


This is a dig from my own archives not long ago. I was part of the design team for multimedia CD-ROM production for the Graduation class of School of Computing, National University of Singapore. This is the title page, in which the user could navigate to sub-sections of the production.

The focus was on memories and nostalgia, and from that came the concept of time, of chronology, and of the color of ancient gold. I came up with the clockworks and the face of the clock, in it symbolizes the passing of time. Having the navigation on the face of the clock seems to indicate a sense of going back in time to revisit memories of yesteryear. Well, Jump Point as the header explicitly, and concisely, describes the concept. The design looks less-trendy than designs of now, but timelessly pleasing nonetheless.

(In the actual CD, a melodic piece 'Small Two of Pieces' from Xenogears plays.)

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Magical Moments

Here's a design of the title a CD-ROM production for my own wedding, affectionately titled 'Magical Moments'. It's a production that is a effort of my wife and I and it runs on Adobe Flash 8.0. There will be a collection of our photos and videos from when we were young to now. There is also a video montage that I am producing with my wife; and this video montage will make it to the big screen and shown to our guests during our wedding dinner. A collection of simple games will also be available with our marriage as the theme.

Stock Sharing

With Stock Exchange, you will never run out of images and stock photos to work with. There are plenty of stock photo availables taken by the Stock Exchange community, and the quality is reasonably high. Most of them are free for personal and commercial use; and for those that aren't, they require a written permission or a credit to the original photographer. Read Stock Exchange's license here. Please take note that, however, there is no Model Release for identifiable people in the photos.

With Stock Expert, you can buy photos from an online library for an unbeatable price. The enterprising photographer could run a small sideline by selling his or her photographs there.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Financial Freedom

The blog will showcase some of my designing and art work done during my free time. Although I work as a full-time software developer, I am happy to take on a freelance design job at a reasonable rate if you think my designs are sufficiently marketable.

Here could be a design of any simple content-driven blog or web-site. Financial Freedom is the title for the sample site as well as the design template. The sample content is primarily about investment and market watch.