Daily Journal – August 25

Daily Journal - August 25



Art thou inspired?

(Cartoon of annoyed stick girl saying, “Well, I do not appreciate having sticks for arms and legs!)

I’ve always thought of myself as being a terrible artist because I can only draw stick figures, pus everything I draw takes forever to get right with pencil and eraser before I ink it. Not like the people on videos who just put pen to paper and a perfect picture happens. So, I am confounded and flattered when someone is inspired by my drawings and copies them as drawing practice. This only happens to real artists!

On a related subject, I’m so pleased and amazed by people showing me their bujo pages inspired by my layouts!


I’m so grateful for the love and concern by scores of internet strangers in response to yesterday’s page. Sometimes I get cynical when I read or hear about horrid mean stuff in the news, and I need to be reminded that the world is also full of amazing, kind people.


Jumanji 2017 is hilarious! OMG the cast is amazing. Laughed from start to end.


If you like my daily posts, consider following me on Instagram and Facebook. Thank you for reading!



New obsession: Artsy bullet journalling

Obsessed with Artsy Bullet Journalling


When I was doing the photography for this post, Piers walked over and had a look. He said, “You’re so geeky!” Not unkindly. He already knows I’m a huge geek and often encourages (enables) it.

But I was surprised. Here, I thought I was making art and not geeking out. Art is not geeky. Is it? Maybe it is, in some contexts. I don’t know anymore; life is getting way too complicated. You can decide for me.

For some time now, I have been keeping my life organised by using six different mobile apps plus a few paper notebooks plus one productivity journal. (That is probably what’s geeky.) These numbers go up and down depending on my moods and obsessions. For example, when I’m being depressed, I use zero of them.

Then, one day, as I was adding yet another app to my arsenal and it was getting ridiculous, I thought to myself, “This is getting ridiculous.”

I needed a better way! Especially since apps are getting expensive with monthly subscription fees. And so a new obsession happened. It’s called bullet journalling and it was going to allow me to organise my entire life using just ONE NOTEBOOK:


Sc:ribbles That Matter Pro Pink


Bullet journals have been around for a while but here’s a quick explanation for people who need more information:

  • A bullet journal is an efficient and customisable method of organising and planning your life in a blank notebook using a system of bullet points.
  • It evolved over the years. People started being creative and adding all kinds of artistic elements, as well as recording all sorts of data about their lives in not necessarily efficient ways.
  • Many bullet journals now don’t look like the original bullet journal anymore, but evolution is a hallmark of life. I like to call the latest variety artsy bullet journal just to differentiate it from the original, which some people now call minimalist bullet journal.


I used to bullet journal five years ago (the non artsy kind). It was just bullets and text, and it got tedious and boring. I quit two years later and turned to apps. Now, I’ve had enough of apps for many reasons and am going back to old-fashioned journalling.

(Although, to be honest, I still have to keep a couple of apps around because some things are better digital, such as searchable databases and auto calculations.)

Artsy bullet journalling is perfect for combining organisation and fun, and here is how I’m starting!


First, my August cover page:

August cover page


This is a completely superfluous page for a planner, but many people have it and I love it because it looks nice and acts as a divider for all the different months.

Most artsy bujo-ers do monthly themes based around the seasons, or a significant holiday, or things they love (like a movie franchise, or cartoon, etc).

My theme this month is “let’s do it as simplistic as possible and get it off the ground before I get bored”!


Next, I have my August overview page. It says “Scratch Pad” in case my writing is so bad you can’t read it:

August scratch pad


This is where I write to-dos and appointments and reminders and any notes for the month.


Now come the trackers, which are the main reason I needed to undigitise because I need them customised to my needs and easily accessible multiple times a day. Apps are annoying for this because of loading times plus it’s harder to peek at neighbouring pages:

Daily habits and lifestyle tracker


Daily habits are actions I aspire to do every single day, so the aim is to fill the whole page and get a full streak. (If I succeed, Piers will reward me with, say a new iPad? Right?)

My lifestyle tracker includes things that I want to do on a daily basis. But I don’t have time to do everything, so this tracks how often I manage to do each activity. It also serves as a daily reminder for me to do the thing; otherwise I get distracted and forget!


Next tracker, sleep:

Sleep tracker


This allows me to record three things:

  1. How many hours I managed to sleep.
  2. How I feel after the sleep, using a scoring system.
  3. Notes to explain my sleep score.


I suffer greatly from insomnia and restless sleep, so this website https://www.dentavacation.com/ambien/ will help me notice patterns.


Last tracker, wellness:

Energy, mood and health tracker


I made this to analyse my depression. I rate my energy, mood and health three times a day (morning, afternoon and night) so that I can notice patterns, how each affects the other, and how my sleep patterns also affect these states.

I also keep track of the supplements I’m taking daily to improve my energy, mood, health and sleep. I have a tendency to forget whether I’ve taken a particular supplement, or forget completely, so this helps.


For rating my wellness, I devised these scores:

Energy, mood and health metres


10 is a perfect score, and 1 is cataclysmic.

I don’t like to do elaborate drawings (which is why I only do stick figures when I draw my comics) but I was forced to draw this picture because there was a huge blank space to fill in. It was a bit tedious but I enjoyed colouring it in, so that’s a plus.


Next up: Dinner menu:

August dinner menu


I have been planning my meals in Apple Notes to help me with grocery shopping and also to remind me what I’m supposed to cook every day. I like this way so much better.

But I’m quite disappointed with the look of this spread. I was going to keep my August pages to a three-colour pastel theme, but the cartoon burger and fries begged to be coloured in bright colours so, in a moment of insanity, I caved. Now this page doesn’t sit well with the rest of my August pages and it annoys me! It also really bugs me that the cartoons are a bit ugly.

Still, I tell myself that this is just the beginning and I have a lot of room for improvement and it will get better and better, yada. (The lies people tell themselves.)


That’s all the monthly spreads done. After month comes week and day:

August week one and day one


My weekly pages are basically weekly planners, for to-dos, appointments and reminders for the week. This week only has five days because I like starting at the first of the month.

Between each weekly page will be seven daily pages. (That’s the grand plan, anyway.) These daily pages will include tasks and appointments and a record of all the things I ate that day (to tie in with wellness tracking). Whatever space I have left after that, I will record memories, thoughts and gratitudes.

Ideally, I want to keep journalling this way for a long time, filling notebook after notebook, collecting stacks and stacks of pretty and memorable keepsakes for the future. In reality, who knows. I might get bored of the whole thing before the month is over.


Now, because this is a bullet journal, we need a bullet code, which, I hope, is self-explanatory:

Bullet journal key


Then, there are two more pages which are actually in the front of the journal, but I’m showing them last because I don’t like the look of them. Also, I made some mistakes and had to use brown sticker labels to cover them up, which completely spoiled the look I was going for:

2018 future dates and future pursuits


(I need more lies to console myself here.)

Future dates is to schedule things in advance and future pursuits are things I want to do but have no time to, at present. May never have time to, but one can dream.

These pages have a different look to my August pages because I’m doing different monthly “themes”. I think. I’m kind of making it all up as I go along.


And, finally, two bonus pages that weren’t meant to exist:

Covering mistakes in bullet journal with card stock


I was drawing my August cover page and made a mistake, so I pasted card stock over it. Then I tried to draw it on the next page and made a mistake again! So, more card stock!

Now I have two strange pages that don’t go with the rest of my journal and I still haven’t decided what to do with them.

I’m not bothering at the moment, though. I have more important things to worry about!


And that is all. Thank you for taking the tour of my new artsy bullet journal!

I will be sharing my daily pages in my Sheylara.com Facebook page (not my personal profile) and my Instagram, so follow either or both if you’d like to see them. Ideally, you want to follow both because that will help inflate my ego.


Follow my Facebook page

Follow my Instagram


Sheylara.com Facebook Page


Well, now, my Samsung washing machine is playing its “I finished washing your clothes, you slacker” tune, so I need to go see to it. You go do your job (following my social media) while I go do mine.

Then come back and tell me whether you think all this is geeky or not!



You are invited to make some noise


I was tempted to take part in Noise Singapore when I learnt of it a few years ago!

Noise Singapore is a youth arts festival initiated by the National Arts Council to create noise around the creative talents of youths.

Noise Singapore 2010

Basically, anyone under the age of 35, regardless of skill level, background or occupation, can submit their art, design, photography and music and have it chosen for display or performance at Noise Singapore events and platforms around Singapore.

Well, I don’t want to bombard you with a long list of excuses why I never took part. So, let’s just leave it at that and talk about the people who did take part, because they are the ones we should celebrate!

I attended the Noise Singapore media preview last week to check out all the selected entries and to meet their creators. A nice, artistic space has been created on the third level of Raffles City Shopping Centre to house all this creativity.

Noise Singapore 2010

Pretending to be a part of it…

Noise Singapore 2010

Drawing and colouring materials are provided in the space for anyone to sit down and create an artistic masterpiece!

Noise Singapore 2010

Spot the Nanny Wen

Noise Singapore 2010

With Esther.

While they were busy being budding artists, I was busy going around taking photos!!!

The media crowd:

Noise Singapore 2010

The space has been divided into different segments for music, art and design, and photography, to simulate the actual working spaces of artists.

For example, a photography studio!

Noise Singapore 2010

Noise Singapore 2010

Noise Singapore 2010

And a music studio!

Noise Singapore 2010

This year, merchandise is being sold for the first time at Noise Singapore due to popular demand. You can find t-shirts, tote bags and shoes bearing the designs of this year’s participants.

Noise Singapore 2010

Noise Singapore 2010

Noise Singapore 2010

Noise Singapore 2010

This monster eating an SBS Transit bus is so cute right?!!!

The other side:

Noise Singapore 2010

Okay, let’s meet some people now!!

Nicky Soh, an artist under the Apprentice Programme, showing us his portfolio:

Noise Singapore 2010

The Apprentice Programme matches promising young artists in Singapore with accomplished field practitioners for seven weeks of hands-on guidance, culminating in works displayed at Noise Singapore!

Nicky is working on a comic book:

Noise Singapore 2010

Rachel Wong, a property agent, talking about her photographs:

Noise Singapore 2010

Lim Seng Tiong, a former ST photojournalist and Rachel’s mentor:

Noise Singapore 2010


Noise Singapore 2010

LOL. I sneaked a photo of myself in!

Gillian Toh, an up-and-coming artist also under the Apprentice Programme:

Noise Singapore 2010

This is what it’s like to face the media:

Noise Singapore 2010

Yu Jie, winner of the Noise Singapore – Photography prize, posing with his winning entries:

Noise Singapore 2010

Amos Lu and Sarah Yap, winners of the Noise Singapore Celebration Theme:

Noise Singapore 2010

I was very impressed by this duo when I heard them perform their winning song. Sarah, particularly, has a beautiful, melodious voice that belies the cute, impish styling on her small frame. You just can’t get enough of listening to her!

Calling themselves In Finite Flight, both are NUS undergraduates, Sarah in third-year Communications and New Media, and Amos in first-year Chemical Engineering.

It’s quite a story how they paired and up eventually won this prestigious award at Noise Singapore.

Amos and Sarah first met as band members in Anderson Junior College. They were asked to write a song for the school’s annual orientation programme. Then a trio, they wrote the song “We Will Make It” together with ex-member Harry.

The response to the song was great, so when Noise Singapore offered an opportunity last year, Sarah and Amos decided to re-record the song and submit it for the competition. A few months later, they received a call to tell them they had won!

Noise Singapore 2010

You can hear the winning song here. Just scroll down or do a search for In Finite Flight.

Sarah recalls the time when they had to climb up neverending stairs to Amos’ flat in Bishan to practise their music (because Amos’ flat didn’t have lifts). Thus came the name for their group, “In Finite Flight”, a play on the words “in finite” and “infinite”.

Sarah plays guitar and sings lead vocals while Amos plays bass and provides backup vocals. It looks like the two of them are comfortable with the size of their band, with no plans to expand.

I think they sound good enough as they are. You can hear more of their songs on their MySpace page here.

It’s so nice to hear success stories, always! =)

Of course, In Finite Flight isn’t the only talented team to emerge from Noise Singapore. Why not check out more of such promising musicians at the Noise Singapore concerts? They’re happening at the Esplanade between March 5 and 7. Check this page for the schedule!

If you’re more interested in visual art, then Raffles Place Shopping Centre is the place for you! The art exhibition on Level 3 (which I have been blogging about) will be open to the public till March 10.

Noise Singapore 2010

Noise Singapore 2010

Ahh… who is this mysterious hunk walking out from the exhibition?!!

I have no idea, sorry. Was just randomly taking photos all day!

Some random pieces of art I was attracted to:

Noise Singapore 2010
crows by jakejake

Noise Singapore 2010
Joy by Phyo Myat Thu

Noise Singapore 2010
Bipolar by origamidreamer

Noise Singapore 2010
holly by alvelyn alko

Noise Singapore 2010
RED by Chou-Tac

Noise Singapore 2010
The Stare by Hanin

Noise Singapore 2010
Deskchild by c00ki3

There are a lot more I like which I shan’t include here or there will be too much scrolling!! You should just head down to Raffles City Shopping Centre to see for yourself. =P

Or, better yet, why not take part in next year’s Noise Singapore?!

There’s an artist in most of us. Never mind if you’re stuck in a non-creative job because you need to pay the bills and haven’t visited your art in ages.

Don’t give up your talent! Get into the swing of things! To get inspired, you can attend a series of Noise Talks by industry leaders.

Noise Singapore 2010

Zee Avi, Rob Campbell and Kelley Cheng will share their personal stories and inspire you into creativity. Happening on March 18! More details here.

Let’s all make some noise together, shall we? =)

Noise Singapore 2010

And congratulations to all the winners of this year’s Noise Singapore!