Sunday 29 July 2012

Places to Sketch/Draw in Singapore: Part 1

  As promised, a post on the places in Singapore that might/could/maybe be of interest to all you artists and tourists alike. This is Part 1, showing the more tourist-y side of our island.

  A little bit on the History of Singapore. It'll be short, and very interesting. I promise.
We used to be part of Malaysia back in the days. Long before Sir Stamford Raffles took interest in out little island. We used to have Sultans (kings/lords) that ruled the villages, with animals many animals. Even tigers! Our last tiger was killed in October 26, 1930, so no worries about that.


  Sir Stamford Raffles first stepped on our shores in 1819, and decided that Singapore (at that point in time called "Singapoura" meaning Lion City in Malay.) was to be a strategic location for trade. Singapore, along with Malacca and Penang became the Straits Settlement in 1826. On 1 April 1867, the Straights Settlements became a Crown Colony and was ruled by a governor under the jurisdiction of the Colonial Office in London.

This brings me to my first location: The Landing Site of Sir Stamford Raffles, or the Raffles Landing Site as it is known.Why? Because of its historical importance. And also because it's just beside the Singapore River. However, I do think that another fella', namely William Farquhar was much more involved in turning our swampy island into a metropolis city than Sir Raffles. But, the Sir got a statue, and he didn't. So...
Here's a picture of the very cool looking Sir Raffles for you:

The Singapore River is next. It's water is sort of greenish looking. No, you cannot swim in it. And no, fishing is not allowed, unfortunately. As Singapore's growth was based around its free port, the Singapore River was essentially where most, if not all, business happened.
  After WW2, Singapore wanted independence. Britain lost its credibility when they failed to protect us. I understand that the going was tough then, and that troops were needed to protect Britain. But, we fought really hard to gain independence after the World War. We wanted to be in control of our own future. We were given independence in 1945, making our country one of the youngest nation in the world. Every year, we celebrate our nation's birthday on August 9, the day which we officially gained sovereignty. You can join the National Day Parade on August 9 at the Floating Platform.

  Near the River, we have our iconic Merlion. Half lion, half fish. (Or mermaid, depending on what you choose to believe.) I've been staying in Singapore for 11 years, and have visited the Merlion countless times, yet I still can't quite decide whether I like or hate the design...

  I'm not suggesting that you draw the Merlion itself, but rather draw the tourists and locals that are there. There are usually hoards of people there every single day, and I think it'll make for the perfect place to sketch people.


  Quite conveniently, if you head on down to the Marina Bay Sands that is just at the opposite bank of the Merlion, you'll get to see the skyline of Singapore.
Done by: Marvin Chew

  Also, don't forget to check out the Esplanade Theater just down the corner. I challenge you to draw inspiration from the design of the Esplanade and paint or sketch an abstract/semi-abstract piece of Art.

  That's all for Part 1. Now you know the tourist-y places in Singapore, look out for Part 2 of this segment for more places that you should visit if you come to Singapore.


  1. So much outdoors. Not pleasant to draw outdoors in Singapore weather. Think would be better with indoors area.

    1. I was focusing more on the unique aspects of Singapore, where an artist could draw interesting sceneries that can't be seen in other countries. Of course, if you want to draw indoors there are plenty of places to be found. This list is more for artists from other countries who are coming to Singapore for a holiday and want to do some urban sketching.

      I shall keep your words in mind, though. Perhaps Part 2 of this post shall include indoor places. :)

  2. Where's Part 2?

    1. Hahaha. At the time of writing this article, I had planned on writing a part 2, but I never got around to it because this article didn't get popular. Perhaps, though, I should revisit this post and make the part 2.
      I'll be keeping this in mind. ^-^

  3. Hello! Is it possible that you make a step by step tutorial on how to draw places of interest in Singapore.... Good article anyway!

    1. It would really depend on what medium you'd want me to work in. Most commonly, urban sketchers work in watercolour whereas I do not really like to use watercolours for anything other than backgrounds.

      It's an idea for me, though. And I appreciate you taking the time to leave a comment. If I do get around to making any tutorials, I'll be posting them on this blog. :)

      Have a great day ahead~