On Saturday I joined 11 other fellow creatives on a little ‘sketch-venture’ that one of them organized. Basically we went off the beaten track instead of our usual sketch and sip cafe sessions to the old Bukit Timah Railway Station which was formally owned by Malaysia’s KTM and has now been returned to the State and opened to the public since. I must admit that I was very excited about this site as I’ve always wanted to walk along those abandoned tracks since I was a kid, just wondering where it would lead to. Although my stomach wasn’t feeling that great, I really didn’t want to miss the opportunity to explore the area with other artistic people. And I was really glad that I went. The first thing that hit me was how nostalgic the place seemed. It felt like a part of Malaysia. With the tall banana trees, the coconut palm trees around and all the other Malaysian kampong flora and fauna you could imagine, yes just like in a Malaysian kampong. The area itself was pretty rustic unlike the typical pristine looking man-made urban landscaping that is common in Singapore.
We were pretty lucky as it didn’t rain at all. But the sun didn’t have mercy on us as we decided to find our own spots to sketch the railway station. It took us all about 30-40 minutes to finally finish our piece. By that time, beads of sweat were already forming around my forehead threatening to drip onto my sketchpad. Thankfully for my pack of tissue, that issue was settled.
A landscape view of the railway station
Close to 6pm, we have pretty much finished our first part of the walk. We took a nice group shot near the railway sign and proceeded to the steel railway bridge. We were not the only ones who look to unwind from a place like this; I totally lost count of how many joggers went past us, the ang-moh cyclists with their dogs and some who slowed down, curious to see what we were conjuring up on our sketchpads.
The next part was at the steel bridge, where it was really just a narrow bridge with the tracks… and everyone just found a spot to sketch the bridge. I must say that I was a bit tired due to the heat, and I was nearly having a mental block. For about 10 mins, I couldn’t find any focal point to sketch and finally I just managed to do something.
The control room with a British syled print on the fire extinguisher
Our displayed artwork
Walking along the steel bridge
I took some photos earlier on, and used the BW effect just to get the old feel. I would definitely come back here again for inspiration or maybe just to unwind because it’s not like many places in Singapore it’s got that nostalgic feeling left.