Day 4: Education, Studios, and the Flyer

We started the day off early, even though most of us had a late night. Our first stop was 3dsense Media School which is a school for interactive media arts. It’s a 1 year intensive program that prepares its students for the computer graphics industry. The student work that was shown was quite impressive considering almost all of them were complete novices coming in.

Next, we headed to Chinatown to visit a Buddhist temple. It was very immaculate and very interesting to walk around. I think that was the first time I’ve been in a religious building that’s non-Christian. It was a nice experience.

For lunch we went to —- to eat an Indian cuisine called roti prata which is kind of like a flatbread and egg mix. It was very good and probably the first full out Indian-esque meal I’ve eaten even though it was kind of Malaysian. It was served with a pink drink that was kind of milky called bandung from Indonesia. It’s actually rose syrup with condensed milk.

After lunch we went to Tiny Island Studios where we had a tour and presentation. They have a program called CG Protegé that’s basically an apprenticeship but they’ll paid salary. All of the things they showed were nicely done and were of great quality. Their facility was decked out with movie posters and toys. It looked like a fun and creative place to work.

We then headed to Scrawl studios for a presentation and tour as well. Scrawl is primarily a studio that does 2D work, their most popular show being Nanoboy. However, they are also working on a few 3D animated series to get their feet wet in that part.

The last thing on the agenda for today was the Singapore Flyer, currently the largest ferris wheel in the world after the London Eye. A bigger one is being built in Beijing, but until then, Singapore has the title. The trip around the Flyer took about 30 minutes and we had great views of the city and islands around Singapore. It was a great way to end the day’s official itinerary.

By the time we got back to the hotel it was 7pm and time to eat. A group of us headed off to Orchard Rd. for some food and shopping since it is the main shopping center for the city.  Orchard Rd. has shopping along the road as well as huge malls connected to it.  After eating at Food Republic, which was a huge food court, we walked through a place called Ion Orchard.  It’s a mall that’s 8 stories tall: 4 above ground, 4 below.  It was crazy.  There were fancy, ritzy, “posh” places like Prada and Armani on the ground and upper floors, and also more financially tangible places the further down you went.  We mainly just walked around.  After a while we went outside and the place was lit up with people walking around all over.  The building looked awesome in how they placed lights along its curves.  I didn’t end up buying anything, but I did make sure to take pictures (of course).

I really enjoy these extra outings with the people I’m touring with (for dinner and fun).  Each time we get to know each other even better than when we’re in tourist/learning mode during the day.  It’s been really great hanging out with people from all over the world.

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