Category Archives: Recycle

Join the Book-Making Camp!

Making artist books – July Camp!

Most places at the Explorator/Robinson Crusoe camp have been taken up for July, but there are still spaces available for the Book-making camp!

So, here is the info again:

Book-Making Camp (July camp only)

Come spend a week discovering how to make books. From building the structure to filling it up. Whether to sketch, write down ideas, or keep notes, many different people keep books. In this camp, we will explore what “BOOK” means to us, and find many different ways to expand on the definition.

Run by artist-scientist Isabelle Desjeux, these camps provide structured time to learn a skill and open time to discover and perfect personal interests. A guest artist will make an appearance, providing a different perspective!

Making friends is also a great part of the camp and we invite parents to join us on the very last day, from 11:00am onward to come and view an exhibition of the works, and meet the new friends. Bring some food to share and we’ll have a picnic.

WHO: for children 6 – 12 years old
WHEN: Monday, July 9 – Friday, July 13, 2012 –  9:30am – 12:30 pm
WHERE: l’Observatoire @ Bukit Timah Turf City.
HOW MUCH: $350

For information : call Isabelle at 92734991 or use the form below to send an information request


Open Studio

A place to explore and create art for teenagers.

In this studio, you’ll have a space to create your own art, be inspired by peers, and get advice and guidance when needed. Over 10 sessions, explore different media and find your voice.

Drawing: pencil, charcoal, and alternative mark-making

Painting: watercolour and acrylics

Printmaking: relief printing (woodcut, lino, collographs), etching, silk-screen

Object-making: basic clay work; working with found objects; papier mâché.

Saturday, 9.30 – 11.30 am. Fees:  $ 50 per class or  $ 450 for 10 class session.

Why do I enjoy teaching again? Oh yeah, it’s the box.

It’s the same every term. By the end of it,  I am exhausted, running out of time, feeling I am not teaching all I wanted to. And then the first day of the next term starts, and I find my usual students eager to start again, afresh.

Today was no different as four eager, laughing, fresh-faced urchins tumbled down to the basement. No, they didn’t rush for the crayons, sit at the table, ask where the paper was. They did ask: “what are we doing today?” but didn’t wait for the answer, went to greet the bunny, and then the guinea pig. I let them settle as I tried to figure the best way to introduce them to Cezanne‘s notion that “everything in nature can be represented in terms of the cylinder, the sphere  and the cone”… or rather how you can draw fun stuff from your imagination once you know how to represent a cube in space (leaving the “see the real world in an easier way to draw” for another time).

There were squeals of joy as I told them to dig in the box of cardboard, choose a piece and reconstitute the box. Of course, these were 5-8 year old, and sticky tape and cardboard boxes were involved. How could there not be joy? As we waited for all to be finished, I told them that the box that was really well sealed had a cat in it (Not quite Shroedinger’s cat, but his cousin). However, the cat was really sensitive to light, and it would disintegrate if it was exposed the smallest bit of light, which means that we can’t open the box to check if the cat is there. Curiously none of them argued that such a cat couldn’t exist. But when I asked if they believed me, they said “no”. So I gave them the box to check. They stopped and laughed, getting the paradox immediatly (I am using “they” because they really reacted as a group). And then they started looking for solutions. “Maybe we can just take a peak”, or “maybe we can place a camera before the cat goes in, with a mechanism connecting it to the outside so we can take pictures”, “Open the box at night”… as I pointed that in all cases the amount of light required to see or take a picture would be enough to destroy the cat, they fell silent.

And then,

one of them said “We can touch it in total darkness” and the one who’s been most silent all along said “we can ezray it”…I had to ask again. “X-ray“. Oh! I decided there and then that the cat was not sensitive to that range of the spectrum, offered her the box and suggested she passes it to her mom to check (Mom’s a doctor).

After that, everyone settled, and it was box-drawing, constructing from boxes, more box drawing and then drawing 3-D animals from imagination. Pictures next time… get the 3-D glasses ready!

Wishing You a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Christmas Tree Opposite

A Green, Optical Christmas tree this year.

 A great thank you to all of you, students, anonymous followers, random passer-bys, friendly commentators, for helping keep this page going by stopping by and sending friendly comments once in a while! The New Year promises some surprises ahead, which I will not reveal yet…

In the meantime, please enjoy my cheeky, green greetings using “optical inks”. Please follow the instructions carefully and ask a child if you aren’t sure… they will know!

1. Find a Christmas card you have just received, and which has a blank back page. Keep that blank page handy.
2. Look at the picture attached. Focus on the top third of the tree somewhere, and look for about 30 seconds.
3. Now, quickly turn to your blank page. Your Christmas card should appear with all the right colours! And you can re-use the card…
4. With thanks to Eric Carle’s “Hello, Red Fox”
3. Merry Christmas!

Last Workshops for the year: Cards Printing and Portrait Drawing

Saturday 3 December: Print your Christmas cards, a parent-child workshop.

  • Using recycled milk and juice cartons, create plates that can be printed… and used to send season’s greetings.
    Milk Cartons and a Star Print

    A star, designed and printed by a 9-year old student from LFS (French School Singapore) during last month's workshop.

    December 3, 2011, 9:15 – 11:15 am.  Make your own Greeting Cards, a parent/child workshop!

    Using the technique of etching on milk cartons, make delicate drawings that can be reproduced and displayed in front of a lighted candle.

    Timing: 9:15 am-11:15 am

    Location: 102 Gardenia Road Singapore 578873

    Instructor: Isabelle Desjeux (92734991)

    Age group:  5 – 14 year olds (young ones should be accompanied). Adults alone welcome.

    Fees (all materials included):$55/60 (Child alone/team) includes all material.

    How do i Sign-Up?

December 5 – 9: Drawing portraits

  • Learn to draw realistically using various tools and mediums (pencil, charcoal, watercolour and pastels). And learn to have fun and see beyond the lines on the surface to create a portrait with personality, reflecting both your personality and the sitter’s personality!
    Self-Portrait by Ruru (9 years old)
    Self-Portrait by Ruru (9 years old)
    Pastel self-portrait by Calista

    self-portrait (Calista, 8 years old)

    Portrait after painting by Vermeer

    Portrait by Ruru (9 years old)



Self-Portrait by Nana (5 years old)

Timing: 10am-12.00pm

Location: 102 Gardenia Road Singapore 578873

Instructor: Isabelle Desjeux (92734991)

Age group: children from 8 years old (beginners or advanced); adults welcome

Group size: no more than 6.

Fees (all materials included): $300

How do i Sign-Up?