Saturday, April 28, 2007

A quiet nite at home is actually quite fun

I have all the time in the world to concentrate on my personal projects. It's related to photography, culture and heritage. Quite premature to write about it here as we are still trying to secure some funding to back us up.

I did a bit of work on Friday nite (yes, I do. I thought I was mad but I got a call from IFH, the jet setting consultant at almost midnight and he just got back from the office). Crazy.

Woke up early this morning thinking of riding Kiara off road. it was raining and the trails were definitely wet. I did not want to spend the afternoon cleaning my mountain bike I decided to ride on the road.

As usual, as soon as I sat on the saddle, I felt like a kid again. The sky was slightly overcast, it was a perfect day to ride on the road. I had solid 1 hour ride. I promised myself to get back on the saddle more regularly from now on.

We'll see.

Meeting on Terengganu

On friday DZ, Jen and I had a discussion on personal project that we are working on for Terengganu. We were invited by TPR, who is DZ's aunt to her beautiful home.

TPR is a very refined lady, very cultured and still travels quite extensively , who are passionate about a lot of subjects especially those related to her passion (cooking), root (Chinese from Terengganu) and work of art (batik from Terengganu). TPR's batiks to me are not crafts, they are pieces of art on fabric. I was very impressed when I looked at her collection. Her works are very unique, beautifully designed and very elegant once printed on batik fabric.

Clearly her works are very much influenced by her travels. She has batik with very subtle Chinese and Japanese influence. The most unique one that I saw (mind you she has a bigger collection upstairs)was the one which she incorporated the Australian Aboriginal arts.

Since we are working together on this project now, I hope one of these days I will have the opportunity to shoot some of the batik and share it with my friends.

Oh, lunch at her place was just delicious. She served authentic home cooked nasi dagang, kerepek binjal, gado gado, pengat pisang (the bananas were deep fried with egg first - sedap giler!), custard, Japanese jelly, dragon fruit (I did not manage to eat this as greedy DZ ate all of them and specially selected sweet nangka (jackfruit)


T.I.T.S. joined us for a short while towards the end and told us funny stories about the coronation and showed us beautiful pictures.

** All pictures were taken from one of my favourite breakfast joints, by the road side in Bukit Damansara with TFF.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Micro Lens

T.I.T.S. has been kind enough to loan me his micro lens. He used to own a nice Nikon body before unfortunately it was stolen and only a micro lens left. Rather than left idle in his little istana in Terengganu, he loan the lens to me.

While looking after my nephews swimming at the swimming pool, I was in my trigger happy mood to experiment the lens and the results are, to me, quite impressive.

I think I need to venture for subjects away from my apartment, soon since this is a long weekend.


p/s I think the images could be sharper with tripod.....

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

This Post is for Terengganu

Since tomorrow is the coronation of the new DYMM Agong who is from the state of Terennganu. This post is dedicated to all Terengganu-borns out there, including me...

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Post Party Post Party

KC and IK best friends from Venus, ok, esp KC actually ransacked my fridge. I was surprised the fridge door and all the tupperwares were still there.

I am not really concerned about the fridge. To my surprise most of the food (some of them are a week old, or longer) and expired junk food were missing.

I hope KC has a strong stomach.

I heard she woke up in a sofa the next day with some candy stuck between the upholstery and her cheek!


***KC has the history of waking up in the morning (on the sofa) with a chicken wing between her fingers....

You are ONE of a KIND!

CN Liew featured in The Star

Since CN was in Singapore, I had to buy 20 copies of the Sunday Star for him. The sales girl at Seven-Eleven had this puzzle "whattheheckishegoingtodo20copiesofthestar" face.

she might be thinking this...

surat khabar lama, old newspaper, sao kow pochi
surat khabar lama, old newspaper, sao kow pochi
surat khabar lama, old newspaper, sao kow pochi

CN is very focused and highly ambitious . A staunch Buddhist who meditate regularly. A perfectionist for sure. Most of the pieces that you see could possibly be the results of the 200th attempts (per piece) after destroying all the previous attempts. All pieces are unique and only 3 pieces (so far) are in the form of figures (self portrait, Mao Zedong Guevara and Che Guevara).

I will elaborate the 3 works of figure form later, after I personally interview him in detail.



Sunday Star 22 April 2007

Sudden Enlightenment’s. He is taking a conservative art form and boldly going with it where no one has gone before.

PURISTS may mock, but C.N. Liew is taking calligraphy into the future. He has taken its strict forms and infused them with vibrant colours and strokes that force the viewer to think outside the box.

In fact, Liew’s works are so far outside the box, he felt moved to coin a new word to describe his art form: “surrealigraphy”.

Surrealism, by artists such as Joan Miro and Salvador Dali, comes, of course, from the West. When you put that together with the very Eastern tradition of Chinese calligraphy, interesting things are bound to happen.

“In Chinese calligraphy, there is the bronze script, the cursive script and the oracle bone script. I paint all these scripts and I use the brush technique to make it more artistic – and it becomes ‘surrealigraphy’ when I combine Surrealism with calligraphy.”

Besides drawing on his studies of bronze and oracle bone script dictionaries 15 years ago when he started learning calligraphy and art, Liew also taps into his experiences from his travels; he’s been to Tibet and Europe, both of which have greatly inspired him.

Tibetan masks as well as Chinese opera masks speak to him while the colours of the Fauvist artist Henri Matisse and the buildings designed by the great Spanish architect Antoni Gaudi also inform Liew’s work.

Zen Verse, part I(left) and Zen Verse, part II.“Gaudi added colours to the buildings so that it looked like he had framed the colours inside the buildings. I have tried to do the same thing by framing the colours inside the scripts – which is not that simple to do,” says Liew.
While his recent works feature lots of colour, he also has a black and white series through which he hopes to show the power of the stroke.

“‘Calligraphy’ is a word from ancient Greece and the meaning, according to the Oxford dictionary, is ‘beautiful handwriting’. This means any script that you can write beautifully, so it can be Arabic, Egyptian or Chinese,” explains Liew.

“But no matter whether it’s Tibetan, Egyptian or Chinese, one thing that’s very important in all calligraphy is the power of the stroke, and the energy in it,” he says.
In Emptiness, for instance, the strokes that form what looks like a Buddha head were done very slowly; because of this, Liew feels, anyone looking at the painting would feel calmness and serenity, and then emptiness.

That painting took about 30 minutes to complete. In comparison, Liberation took just 10 seconds. The very fast stroke he used in this imparts noticeable energy in the painting that is enhanced by the splashes of ink.

Liberation was done in one swift stroke, and it was a challenge to control the ink and the stroke in such a way that the ink would last until the stroke was done. While one script is written clockwise, which is the norm with Chinese calligraphy, the other is done counter-clockwise, breaking all tradition.

LiberationSays Liew, “What I am trying to say is, clockwise represents positive vibes while the counter-clockwise represents negative vibes. But to have liberation, we need to maintain both the positive and negative and stabilise both energies.”

Although it looks as if a lot of thought and planning goes into his art, Liew says he doesn’t actually plan that much. He meditates and empties his mind before he begins. Then, when he looks at the paper, he already has an image in mind.

“You use your brush to express yourself so that others can see that image. Sometimes, what you imagine is a bit different from what you paint because that moment (when you thought of the image) is not this moment (when you paint it).”

Breaking the rules in what can be a rather conservative art form was a brave step; fortunately for Liew, he won an award the first time he presented his “surrealigraphy” works on an international platform. This certainly helped in keeping the number of brickbats down. Sudden Enlightenment won him the Seoul Calligraphy Biennale Special Prize Award in 2005. The competition had been open to calligraphy artworks from all over the world.

Liew’s works are gaining increasing prominence in local and international arenas. They have been collected by an impressive range of private individuals – Dr Ikeda Daisaku, poet laureate and recipient of the United Nations Peace Award 1983; Tan Swie Hian, member-correspondent of the Academy of Fine Arts, Institute of France; and Liu Chang Le, CEO of Phoenix TV in Hong Kong – and public and private institutions and companies such as the National Art Gallery, Seoul Calligraphy Biennale, Singapore Nei Xue Tang Museum, Plum Blossoms Gallery in Hong Kong and Soka Gakkai Malaysia.

Liew also worked with Malaysian couturier Carven Ong at the Arts for All Charity Carnival in Kuala Lumpur in 2005, contributing painted-on designs.

As a contributing writer at Asiaweek magazine’s Chinese edition, where he writes about art and culture, Liew is constantly pushing ideas about how art can be created. And with his eye set on ceramic sculptures next, he is determined not to be limited by any tradition, rule or medium.

C.N. Liew’s ‘Surrealigraphy’ exhibition is being held at the Art House Gallery at Wisma Cosway, Jalan Raja Chulan, Kuala Lumpur, until April 30. Inquries, call 03-2148 2283.

Sunday, April 22, 2007


My belated birthday party was a BLAST!

Almost everybody came except those who are away.

A good mix of friends came including my colourful party friends (still as crazy as before, dancing on the chairs and all), photography friends (comes very handy. we had 3 photographers!), cycling friends, hiking friends and old friends.

In the house there were lawyers, doctor, entrepreneurs, artist, designer, writer, architects, songket designer, music composer, corporate executives, bankers, fund managers, IT, consultants, contractor, fashion designer, pub and restaurant owners, pro photographer........

I think everybody had fun based of the sms received after the party and more the next day. Oh by the way, my next day started 8pm. I was absolutely knackered as some people stayed on until, yes, 5.30am.

My gratitude to:

Iks and KC, Marsimmo and KL: for decorating and the whole setting of the venue

Crewcut: I have the individual photos of everybody who attended the party.

Crewcut, Sam L and JoeyS: Taking the pictures of my crazy friends during the party. Can't wait to see who were flirting with whom, who were dancing on the chairs, the winners of the best dressed etc etc.

Marsimmo, JD, WF: for bringing the Dream Girls to the party. The best entertainment ever! Were we in Vegas?

CY: For the fabulous cake and pie (I got to eat them towards the end!)

MLai: The food was great. The venue was great. The service was fantastic and especially thank you for chasing us out in style at 2.15am rather than 1am and the sponsorship of the gift vouchers.

NigeM, NoreenM and MusB: The judges!

Fabulous gifts! Nice huge oil on canvas painting personally painted by RARS, Wireless Mac Keyboard and Mighty Mouse, Shisha (hubblybubbly) and framed pics from Crewcut, a set of fine French delicacies including foie gras, fresh from Paris from KC and lots of other great stuffs! I love them all!

I am on leave today, yeay!

I want a good massage.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

You said you want a pic of a girl in a bikini in Kuantan?

Well, you got it!

Snapped on the way back to my room after Teluk Chempedak shot. She was a having an early morning sunrise swim....

bumped into fellow enthusiast......

capturing the sunrise....

Hyatt Regency Kuantan - Revisited

M: Just arrived at the Hyatt, pushed the ISO all the way to 1600 and snap snap snap the resort just after sunset. What whould life be without a cam and a bike?

The ever witty DRG: Oh believe me I can suggest to you a pretty good alternative to ride and shoot!

Friday, April 20, 2007

Teluk Chempedak - revisited

I have been to Kuantan and Teluk Chempedak countless time.

Having breakfast at the restaurant by the beach watching the sunrise is something I always look forward to.

A couple of days ago I was there again, for work of course. Had to stay overnight since a meeting and site visit were scheduled early part of the morning. Besides, I could not manage to get tickets to make a fly-in-fly-out day trip.

At a birthday party one of my friends asked me whether I bring my camera wherever I go?


I do!

Because there had been occassions when I had great photo ops but didn't have my cam with me. Bummer!

This time I brought my camera, naturally, but I forgot to load my car with the tripod (stupid!). I improvised with whatever I had nevertheless and the result is quite satisfactory.

Woke up at 5.45am, pushed the shutter speed all the way to 30 seconds I took these shots in the dark by the beach of Teluk Chempedak right before sunrise.

As always, the beaches in the East Coast are my favourites!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007


For a change, I am actually busy at the office today.

I feel so energized and useful.

The last time I felt like this was right before my boss sold his shares, laughed all the way to the banks to deposit a very serious amount of cash. I can leave happily 7 times or more luxuriously with that amount of money.

He left me with a lot of knowledge, and a nice watch... hehehe

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

RSVPs drama

My friends are wierd.

They ARE!

My poor secretary (and I) had to deal with them ALL.

Ms. IK: I think I am the first to respond. Please ask Encik M, is there is a present for me.

Ms. RL (when asked whether she was coming): It's okay. I will deal with M directly.

M: Is Mr. JJ comig?
Secretary: That friend of yours talked a lot.
M: Is he coming?
Secretary: I don't know. He didn't say.
(That is typical JJ)

TF: Is it your birthday
M: Yeah! 21st!
TF: Have a great party. I'll party here (in the US) with EE

Dr. N: Can I bring a friend to intro to you?
M: Errrrrrr

IFH: So, this girl is invited. Hmm I am going to feel wierd man.
M: Dude I have recieved a couple of phone calls checking who's coming who's not. But they are ALL girls who asked these wiered questions...
IFH: Ouch! You are lucky I am in the office, or else I'd scream at you!

T.I.T.S: What's the theme?
M: Ruby Red
T.I.T.S: Oh OK. I will cover myself with rubies... and sapphire

Secretary: Ni mesti mabuk kan?
M: No lah!

I need a list of retro songs

My birthday party is this weekend. (yes, belated)

I have to compile retro songs.

I have a bunch from the magic of limewire so far but being kiasu, I would rather have more so that everybody is happy. (I know it's an impossile task, but I will try.)

I've got Rick Ashley, Bananarama, Barry White, Level 42, Billy Idol, Lisa Stansfield, Men At Work, ABBA medley and songs from Barbarran days like I'm Horny etc.

You guys out there, please give me some suggestions!

Gimme your wish list!

I remember the pink cyclist used to have a list of these mambo-jumbo numbers in his "therodie blog" which is now defunct. I think theroadie is still out there either hiding or in an obvious disguise. You would help me out with these, would you?

You were a regular mambo-jumbo at Zouk and Bar Savanh.


By the way for those of you who were born later in the 70s, the original singer of Uptown Girl is NOT Westlife. Its Billy Joel lah!

Monday, April 16, 2007

Saturday breakfast


M: breakfast?

FW: sure, but you have to come to Perth.

M: *beep*!

FW is in Perth, part of his company regional gathering to reward their employees (I am guessing here, but, it's along that line lah!). Last night he sms-ed me. Kool And The Gang was specially flown to perform at their dinner.


Do you want a brand new road for your kampung?

Then you have to pray hard so that your wakil rakyat or ahli parlimen die.

If there was no by-election, your hometown would be left behind from any development. Unless of course it has a gold mine or timber forest ready for exploitation.

It is very cheap to retain your control in Malaysian politics.

Build new road (only if someone died)

Get the ministers to visit.

Use all available media.

Oh! Machap is in Melaka and Ijok is in Selangor.

I haven't got a clue until their Wakil Rakyats kicked the bucket!

Sunday, April 15, 2007

SUNSHINE, the movie

Fifty years into the future, the sun is dying. Man’s last hope lies with a heroic group of eight astronauts and scientists aboard the spaceship Icarus II charged with delivering a stellar fission bomb into the heart of the sun. Their predecessors on the Icarus I mysteriously failed in their mission never to be heard from again...until now. When contact with earth is cut and Icarus I is discovered languishing in space, things begin to unravel. As the crew members find themselves pushed to the breaking point, the question becomes: will they succeed in saving mankind or succumb to the light?
Source: 20th Century Fox

It was almost midnight. I was all set to hit the sack. JD and YI called to watch a horror movie in Mid Valley.

I drove like a maniac to catch the mid night show.

As soon as I parked the car JD called, the tickets for the movie Jangan Pandang Belakang was sold out.


Since we were already at the cinema and they already bought 2 large pop corns, we decided (or rather I did) to just watch whatever available.

We ended up watching SUNSHINE with Michele Yeoh.

It was a total CRAP!

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Lensa Mata Ikan

Another lense courtesy of JoeyS.


Macro on 55mm

I tried the macro lens belongs to JoeyS.


I can even capture the serial number of my 50mm

Errrr IFH, could you please stop salivating....

Happy Birthday RARS

Everybody was late.

Quite typical of my group of friends.

A pool party after typical Klang Valley downpour. The weather was quite cool and the view of KL skyline from the poolside was fantastic. I didn't bring my tripod so, I couldn't be bothered to snap any pix.

Some people didn't even turn up, I guess they slept through such a lovely cool evening. Brilliant time to nap.

I don't even know RARS's age and the candle didn't help either.

Corny KL came wearing a t-shirt, obviously from Chaktuchak Weekend Market or Suan Lum Night Bazaar, Bangkok.

I am exhausted!

C N Liew

Homage to 31st August, National Day
Acrylic, Gold and Ink on canvas
308cm x 125cm (2005-2007)

Calligraphy award for KL artist

Local artist C. N. Liew received the Special Prize Award at the inaugural 2005 Seoul Calligraphy Biennale held from July 7 to 20 in Seoul.

The Kuala Lumpur-born artist was awarded for his Chinese calligraphy work, entitled "Diffusion of Brush and Ink".

Liew, who advocates artistic authennticity and the philosophy of Zen Buddhism in his artwork, was the only Malaysian who was invitied to participate in the event along with 70 other established artists from Korea, China, Japan, Taiwan, Singapore, France, Italy and the United States.

The grand prize was awarded to Chinese artist Zhu Ming for his abstract piece titled "Quiet Wind". Other special prize recipients were french artist Christine Dabadie-Fabreguettes, Seuk Yong Jin from Korea and Yamamoto Taikou from Japan.

Organised by the Seoul Metropolitan Government and other art authorities and organisations in Korea, the event was aimed at promoting traditional and contemporary calligraphy.

Liew said he was honoured to be part of the event and the award was surprise bonus.

"I am thankful to the organising committee. My achievements should be credited to my country and I want to share my joy with my mentors and friends," said the 30-year-old.

soource: The Star 28 July 2005

Ode to Revolution
Che Guevara
Ink & Colour on rice paper
98cm x 90cm (2003)

"For Truely Great Man, One SHould Look Within This Age's Ken" - Mao Ze Dong
(Surrealligraphy Series)
Colour & Ink on rice paper
98cm x 90cm (2007)

"Che and Mao are the "innovation icons" of the 20th century. The arts today needs revolution and innovation. I painted Che and Mao because these are two icons inspire the path of my arts"

Artist, Painter, Calligrapher, Critic and Contributing Writter of Newspapers & Magazines.

a Q
(Surrealligraphy Series)
Colour & Ink on rice paper
98cm x 45cm (2006)

Art Education
Student of the renowned Zen Art Master, The Most Venarable Bo Yuan
(b.1908~) and Mr Tan Swie Hian, Member-Correspondent. Academy of
Fine Arts, Institute of France.

The highest good is like that of water - verse of Lao Zi
(Surrealligraphy Series)
Colour & Ink on rice paper
98cm x 90cm (2006)

Special Prize Award.
2000 Works were entered into World Chinese Calligraphy &
Painting Records, endorsed by the Ministry of Culture of
The People’s Republic of China and published by China
Culture and Art Publication.
1998 Winner of “The Best Consumer Report Award” (Chinese
Category) organized by Ministry of Domestic Trade and
Consumer Affairs, Malaysia.
1998 Winner (Group) of “The Best Finance Report Award” by Institute
Akhbar, Malaysia.
1997 Winner of “The Best Consumer Report Award” (Chinese
Category) organized by Ministry of Domestic Trade and
Consumer Affairs, Malaysia.
1995 Excellent Award for Calligraphy & Painting-The Global
Calligraphy & Painting Competition, organised by Taiwan
Overseas Chinese Affairs Commission.
International BIENNALE
2005 In conjunction with the “2005 SEOUL CALLIGRAPHY
BIENNALE” Seoul, Korea.

(Surrealligraphy Series)
Ink on rice paper
98cm x 90cm (2006)

Solo Exhibitions
2007 Surrealligraphy And Literary Works By C. N. LIEW,
Art House Gallery, Kuala Lumpur.
2006 Art Fashions Showcase
(Collaborated with Designer Carven Ong),
Bankers Club, Kuala Lumpur.
2005 “Arts For All“--Art Fashions Showcase For Charity
(Collaborated with Designer Carven Ong),
Bukit Kiara Equestrian And Country Resort,
Kuala Lumpur.
2005 Asthetic Imagery--Works By C. N. LIEW,
Art House gallery, Kuala Lumpur.
2004 Emptiness, Birth of Forms,
Pangkor Laut Beach Resort, Dreaming Island.
2003 Emptiness, Birth of Forms,
Plum Blossoms Gallery, Singapore.
2001 Splendid Mind, Spacious Forms,
Shiang’s Art & Sculpture Gallery, Kuala Lumpur.
The Collective Works on the exhibition was produced by the
organizer, Soka Gakkai Malaysia and a Talk on
Contemporary Calligraphy was organized by Sin Chew Daily

Sudden Enlightenment II
(Surrealligraphy Series)
Colour & Ink on rice paper
98cm x 45cm (2006)

2007 Affinity Meet ing- -C. N. LIEW’s Interviews Wi t h
Famous And Outstanding Personalities (Coming Soon)
2005 Asthetic Imagery--Works By C. N. LIEW.
2004 Chief Editor of “Th e Complete Works of The
Three Genius (Prof. Dato’ Yim Yoo Loon, Dato’ Sim Mow
Yu and The Most Ven. Bo Yuan)”, published by Ling Lian
Yu Fund.
2003 Emptiness, Birth of Forms--Contemporary Ink Painting &
Calligraphy, Works By C. N. LIEW, published by Plum
Blossoms Gallery.
2003 The Collective Works of The Most Venerable Bo Yuan & His
Disciple C. N. LIEW, published by Hu Bing Vihara.
2003 Chief Editor of “The Complete Works By Professor Dato’
Yim Yoo Loon.”
2001 Splendid Mind, Spacious Forms--Works By C. N. LIEW,
published by Soka Gakkai Malaysia.
2000 Chief Editor of “Serenity & Tranquility--The Zen Art of Most
Venerable Bo Yuan”. Published by Hu Bing Vihara.

Kong Fu - Martial Art
(The Energy of Strokes)
Ink on rice paper
180cm x 98cm (2003)