Singaporean illustrator Mok Zijie showcases his masculine style through his culturally relevant creations. He got his hands on the Lomo'Instant and gave customization a try — the result is a functional piece of art!
We had a brief chat with him about his customization and his experience shooting with the Lomo'Instant among friends.
Please introduce yourself to the Lomography Community.
Hello! I'm Mok Zijie and I’m a part-time illustrator and a student studying product design who came from the little red dot, Singapore. My works are mostly miniatures done in watercolour inspired by the magical diversity of nature and the structured clean cuts in architectures. Still a young artist, I hope to see where my passion would take me in the future.
What is your origin story as an artist?
I've loved painting and anything art related since I was very young. I guess I’ve been influenced by my mother who loves to paint as well and has thought me since young. I’ve always been drawing but only started using watercolours when I created my Instagram account. I wasn’t however always good in art as I remembered scoring a D for art in primary school, hopefully, I’ve grown to be a better artist as I’ve never stopped painting. I’m not sure where this would take me but I am enjoying the ride so far.
Can you tell us more about your art style and your vision as an artist?
I guess you can say my style is very clean cut, realistic, natural and detailed. I rarely paint things which are messy and unfinished because I just like the clean-cut feel of things. My paintings have a lot of details but are small, making my audience stare closer into it, discovering more as they look. My mind is a mess of ideas which tends to merge together forming more colourful ideas, I immediately paint them as I go without a sketch or a brief because I like to not know where the painting would take me. My greatest inspiration is all those vintage biology posters you find in museums because I really find those interesting.
What's it like being an artist in Singapore?
I think it’s wonderful, in the sense that I am free to express myself and is encourage to follow my passion. We are given opportunities like art fairs to show the crafts and paintings you have done. We do not have huge mountains and wilderness which is what I mostly paint but we do have amazing architecture buildings. Because Singapore is such a small place, the community is small and tight. Everyone knows each other and we share ideas and experiences which is pretty amazing.
What is your first impression of the Lomo'Instant?
My first impression of the camera is the amazing design of it. Since I studied product design, I’ve been drawn into the vintage yet modern design of the camera. After reading the menu, I’m amazed by the many different options I’m able to do with the camera. It wasn’t just a simple instant camera; it really was something much more.
Tell us more about how you designed the Lomo'Instant. How did you conceptualize? What medium did you use?
I wanted to incorporate the feeling of exploration and discovery when you go out taking pictures with the Lomo’Instant with my natural and organic feel to the camera, hence I painted many different natural things on it. I wanted to give it a feel of being doodled like you’ve just painted what you have seen while you are going on an adventure but still having my sense of order and cleanness to the doodle. I know I’ve said I have always used watercolour but for this, I’ve used acrylic to keep it permanent.
How was it like to shoot with the Lomo'Instant? Any favorited photos?
I think its amazing! I have never seen a camera which has double exposure before and for me and my friend to see it appear was a shocker. It was definitely a conversational starter where we tried different functions and effects. When the film develops the effects the polaroid gives is extraordinary and nostalgic. My favourite photo would have to be the one where I took of my friends in the orange room at the National Museum of Singapore. It really gives the effect of a song album which is something I think is very cool.
Any upcoming/ongoing projects you would like to tell the community about?
Currently nothing yet, I’m in the army hence it is hard to do any projects, hopefully, I can find the time to start on projects and collaborate with people and companies!
For more of my work, check out my Instagram!
written by crissyrobles on 2019-01-05