Fermi’s Paradox (and color sketch)
This was put out a while back, and is an interior illustration for an article written by a friend for Scientific Malaysian. There are many postulated answers to the paradox that will make for a day or two of interesting reading.
Pick up a print of this here!
Pirates of Penzance Posters
Two posters for the Brown University Gilbert & Sullivan. The Pirates of Penzance is my favourite G&S opera, so this was a really fun assignment to work on. The director made a list of the characters he wanted to appear on each poster, but otherwise I was free to take any direction I wanted. It was an opportunity to explore a simpler, looser style than I normally use.
The Dinner Comic
An interactive comic where you attempt to navigate a conversation about your career preferences. It’s based on Malaysian society, drawn from situations I’m personally familiar with, and is partly an exploration in telling stories using staples of the web - buttons, accordion menus.
Try it out at http://charisloke.github.com/Webcomics/!
Community by Design - The Brown Science Center
I conceptualized, designed, and illustrated this 4x4 feet poster for the Science Center to show the good work they’ve been doing for the Brown community and beyond. I wanted to present stories rather than facts. And the stories would be told both verbally through dialogue - just the way the Science Center people told them to me - and through the images.
My initial meetings with Dean David Targan and Science Center staff involved statements like “We have the X program, and the Y program, and Z.” “We should make sure the B program is mentioned on the poster.” “We need to emphasize the role we’re playing in interdisciplinary arts/science efforts.”
However, they had also doodled little drawings on sheets of paper representing some of the different things the Center did, as well as a bar chart showing progression on a spectrum from ‘science’ to ‘arts and humanities’, referring to the nature of their programs. Talking with them further opened the floodgates for all kinds of cool stories: “The children loved the lanterns they made”. “It started with a medical student drawing on the walls”. “The architect’s first draft was a cell - seriously!”
Storytelling is such a natural thing for humans to do (as the clients demonstrated) and it’s a way for us to process information better - by getting us more interested in the topic through selectively presenting information. You remember that the SC held a trivia showdown event because you saw that the students bested the professors and were celebrating, more than because you read that it held a showdown event. Your brain locks on to those relatable moments and visuals more than it does numbers.
This is representative of the work I enjoy doing, and will keep doing - using visuals to help people communicate.
For Scientific Malaysian. 2.5 hours with the Lasso and Transform tools.
If you alter male mosquitoes genetically such that they cannot produce offspring that live for long, and then release them into the wild, theoretically they should breed with existing female mosquitoes and produce babies that die before becoming adults. This should decrease mosquito populations, which is especially nice if they’re causing dengue fever or carrying other diseases.
Realistically, there are a lot of other factors that come into play, depending on the actual environment and implementation. A fun illustration opportunity nonetheless!
This is for a short story series in Scientific Malaysian. The request was for an image that showed the right brain-left brain dichotomy; the character is described as spending his day doing ‘right brain’ activities instead of his standard ‘left brain’ research. I suggested something that would tie in more elements of the story, and hint at the brain idea through colour and shape. And after all, there isn’t really a clean division of function between the hemispheres of the brain.
Spot done for the Providence Alliance of Clinical Educators; this one is for a story about the Achilles tendon. I’m really enjoying doing these story illustrations, as they’re fun, quick ways for me to learn different ways of inking, composing pictures, and designing them so they’ll read well at a small size after being photocopied.
‘Worker Harmony’ game art
Had the opportunity to join my first game jam over the weekend at the GAMBIT Game Lab in MIT. This is art created for our team’s proposed ‘Worker Harmony’ game, the concept being that each level contains a simple melody, which you match by dragging employees into the tray slots such that the notes and beat are correct. Each occupation is a different note, but we have ten different randomly selected sprites for each, of varying genders and ethnicities. Once you match the melody, you earn a block to add to your collection; these symbolize various things, from creativity to teamwork to strength.
A lot more metaphorical and abstract than what the people who supplied the base guidelines might have intended, though I think metaphorical games, if done right, are just as influential as more literal ones.
It’s surprising how much can be done in less than 24 hours sans the distractions of standard college life. Initially shooting for 60 employee portraits was a tad too ambitious, but I’m happy with how much I completed, considering I drew everything at 300dpi. Since the initial idea was to have it playable on an iPad, I intended the art to be visually striking and detailed, and the design conducive to a touchscreen interface.
It was a pleasure working with the great people on my team and brainstorming with all of the jam participants. Many thanks to GAMBIT for hosting us in their awesome space!
India ink, pencil, Photoshop
Illustration for the College Hill Independent’s Science section. It’s about a researcher who dissects brains of schizophrenic patients to try and learn about the illness, but who also uses his knowledge of William Blake’s poetry to better understand the diagnoses and autopsy reports of those patients.
Doing this was pretty fun! Here’s a process shot:
Concept for a group project we did for Professor Swartz’s singular ‘Biological Design: Structural Architecture of Organisms’ class at Brown. We looked at how various marine organisms used bioluminescence and fluorescence, and took cues from them in designing the various components of this diving set - a ventrally-lit camouflage suit based on the velvet belly lantern shark, undersea goggles inspired by the fluorescence mechanisms of the dragonfish, and anti-turbulence fins based on whale flippers.
Quick rundown: if you’re swimming under a predator, it’s likely to cast a shadow on you thanks to the light coming from the surface - unless its ventral side is also emitting light, in which case you might not notice it. That’s the thinking behind the suit. The goggles emit red light of a frequency which most fish cannot see, but which humans can. The fins have bumped edges based on the tubercles on the leading edges of whale flippers, which help reduce turbulence - helpful if you’re trying to sneak up on fish. The suit also incorporates sharkskin texture for better aerodynamics.
I did the research for the materials aspect of the suit, and while the technology we’re proposing for it is probably not feasible yet, it can definitely be developed, if existing examples of flexible OLED screens (even stretchable P-OLEDs), electroluminescent ink (the Illum cycling jacket), and printed electronics are anything to go by. Exciting!