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5. Your Notion of Colurful Asia Postcard (Compiled)

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5. Your Notion of Colurful Asia Postcard

Objective – Create a postcard
Themes – Your notion of colourful Asia… (in cultural, politcal and social aspects of Asia)
Stage 0 – Idea Generation
Stage 1 – Preliminary Sketches (Hand-drawn)
Stage 2 – Colour Scheme Thumbnail Draft 1 (A3 size) and Postcard Prototype 1 (A6 size)
Stage 3 – Colour Scheme Thumbnail Drafts 2 (A3 size)
Stage 4 – Final Revised Work (A6 size)



This assignment is known to be the most difficult assignment, because of the theme I think. When I wrote out the mindmap, I had so many ideas in my mind yet I couldn’t put them down in drawing. The frustrations is partly because of the limited knowledge about photoshop and NIL about Illustrator.




You can see that these sketches are super rough, and they are all individual figures. I tried working with illustrator, but no matter what, I just simply can’t work it out.

My idea is to have various buildings from all over the countries, and people of different ethnic cultures parachuting down. However, I realise it means having different ethnic clothings =harder to draw.

You can see that lady from Thailand, when I drew out, I was thinking of the costume design. Thus the decision for not using that.

A stroke of idea made me thought of comic characters, and I decided to use comic characters from different countries. Japan’s characters are all over the place, and I tried researching and found Lao Fu Zi from Hong Kong, Pucca from Korea (though she looks Japan-ish), and Mr Kiasu representing Singapore.

I tried looking for Malaysia, India and other countries, but the cartoon characters etc were either not found or the size of the picture is too small for me to refer…


For the infrastructure, I decided to use Mount Fuji for Japan and sakura flower blossom, and the Twin Petronas Tower for Malaysia, the temple like tower which is supposed to represent Korea, Taj Mahal for India , Taipei 101 for Taiwan, and the Great Wall of China for China. Of course, for Singapore, it would be the famous durian like explanade and the merlion.


Colour scheme
Colour scheme

Everything didn’t work out as I imagine it to be. I had a difficult time arranging every thing and everything seems out of place. The biggest problem was with the Gret wall which is simply too abstract.

As everything was hand drawn, the colouring was a big headache for me as those area where my line doesn’t fully cover, it will end up colouring the whole layer.I tried blending and shadowing without any success. (see Great Wall)


Prototype 1 (Original)
Prototype 1 (Original)

In the end I decided to choose the original one as my final work.


The class didn’t give much comment, as my inability to use Illustrator kinda spoilt everything and tied my hands down. The found the neon one nice, but I was thinking of using the uncoloured version for children to colour and they like the idea. The problem will be it will seem incomplete.

But the surprise was not many people know about Mr Kiasu! Hmmm, am I being too back-dated?

I decided to approach Jing after lecture, and she gave me a few suggestions. The main problem with my work is that’s too flat. (Wow, that’s the word for it!) It has no perspective and it isn’t arranged carefult. For eg. Taj Mahal is ‘heavy’ and should be placed near the bottom…

She roughly drew out the perspective I could have, and mentioned that if I followed this method, the problem may be solved. I asked if I should just concentrate with the comic characters instead, and she say that will simplify things A LOT and it will work the same.

She suggested using Lat for Malaysia, whose characters all have the nose shaped like

Thus I decided to follow her advice…

I asked if I could present 2 version of the postcard, one for kids (colouring version) and one as official. And she said yes!~


Before the Birth of Draft 2

Even though I said that I’m going to concentrate on the comic character, some teeny part of me is still unwilling to part with the buildings, but as there’s simple too many people working on the buildings already, the unique-ness is no longer there.

Thus, I was thinking along the line of “why should the comic characters come to be together? I suddenly thought of a great idea one of my classmate, Rui Shen had in his first assignment, using Egyptians carving as words. I decided to adapt the  idea and use it on the buildings!

Woohoo~ I solved my troubles!

By this time, I had finally learn how to use illustrator and understand what everyone means by the power of Illustrator. Because of the need to learn when colouring the final project.


Colour scheme2
Colour scheme2

In my 2nd version, I used The “Chew on it” characters [Those comic strips you see in toilet, trains and Straits Times for Singapore, followed by Cha Cha Chaudhary for India, Doraemon for Japan, Mashimaro for Korea, Lat for Malaysia, The Sun Wu Kong (Monkey god) to represent comics from Taiwan ( I didn’t know till I research! Cool, the comics I have been reading like Journey to the West, Dao etc ar actually drawn by Taiwan artist!) and Lao Fu Zi from Hong Kong.

I made it like an Asian Exhibition where all the characters gather.

Using Illustrator, I managed to draw out everything and complete in 5hrs. (Power of Stress) The shaowing made everything more realistic. And the challenge comes when you have to leave everything in white before colouring them again.

Every characters are linked subtlely to one another, and I hope everyone can see it. From left, the ‘Chew on it’ character is turning back to see what happened with the Cha Cha Chaudhary trying to poke him with his stick. Doraemon is happily skipping around, with Sun Wu Kong looking at hime in amusement, Mashimaro is the only one looking at the exhibition intently (see the Korean South Gate it’s looking at) while is looking down to see what it’s doing. Lao Fu Zi is trying to act politically correct bywaving hi to everyone.

For the infrastructure, I tried to arrange everything in such a way that they can all be viewed clearly.


Colour schemes, instead of the usual titles of Warm, Cold, Sweet etc, I had something different like Food Poisoning( relating to the recent case), super powers etc, to relate to what kind of impression the whole picture gives when the colours are changed.


Kids' version
Kids’ version

This Kid’s version hopes to let the children customise their own postcard by colouring them and sending them to their friends.

Final version
Final version

I chose the original one for the final as the original one brings out the essence of the whole picture best.


Author: Tiffany Yong

The ABC Girl (Actor, Blogger, Consultant) in Singapore!

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