Indeed, when we first met YCH’s group’s executive chairman Dr Robert Yap, we were blown by his tenacity, vision and innovative spirit. Here was a local boy, who took over his family’s passenger transport business in crisis and turned it into a logistics giant, far outstripping the imagination and aspirations of the small family business. He left a deep impression on us – a dynamic man forever bubbling with ideas, ideas that were often ahead of his time. Above all, his treating his workers as his family, never abandoning them even in the face of hard times, was admirable. In fact, his love for his community extended to his love for his country and in coming up with the concept of Supply Chain City, Dr Yap, was thinking very much of revolutionising the logistics landscape in Singapore and putting Singapore on the regional and world map of logistics.
Dr Robert Yap’s brainchild, Supply Chain City, was borne out of crisis, when YCH was served an eviction notice, to make way for a new MRT line. Forced to move, Dr Yap boldly decided to transform Singapore’s logistics landscape by building Supply Chain City, a physical set-up designed to encourage social interaction, innovation and business networking through the logistics ecosystem he designed and termed LEARN.
As we learned more of his fortitude and YCH’s story, we became convinced that this is a story that needs to be told, so that hopefully more would be inspired and take up the challenge to make changes that impact the larger community and nation positively. Nowhere is this more urgent than today’s context, where many in Singapore are prone to cynicism, negativity and quick “keyboard warriorism”.
We at Yellow Octopus are proud to have been part of this momentous occasion. Supply Chain City is an impressive building with state-of-the-art technology to build something bigger and better for the Asian market. The book Unbroken: Rising to the Challenge documents YCH’s journey from its humble beginnings to the powerhouse that it is now. We are inspired and moved by Dr Yap’s never-say-die attitude and spirit of bold innovation, and hope that our book can bring YCH’s story to life, inspiring more local businesses to forge forward and thrive in unchartered waters. To YCH, our client, the book’s title “Unbroken: Rising to the Challenge” cannot be more apt to describe YCH’s vision of connecting people with roads, followed by integrating cities to form a logistics superhighway. For us at YO, “Unbroken” is the only right choice, because of YCH’s unwavering spirit in the face of challenge after challenge.
Dr Robert Yap, we salute you, and send you our well wishes that SCC go from strength to strength, always flying the Singapore flag high! Majulah Singapura!
Our short but very sweet time at Babies of Boracay left each of us with precious memories and life lessons. Even in the days after, we found ourselves reflecting on and sharing our personal experiences. Together, we learnt that great things can be achieved with vision, determination, and lots of heart. That it doesn’t matter how old or young you are to start making a difference in the world. And above all, how it important it is to love deeply, dream bravely, and live for something much bigger than ourselves.
The creative team took the opportunity to unleash our campaigning skills on #Kampaign2015 – producing our own version of party posters, flyers and even social media material. What we could never have guessed was the enthusiastic response these garnered on Facebook on the day itself, with lighthearted confusions over Kevin’s actual participation in GE2015 and questions about whether this was a YO marketing tactic. Of course, this generated many interesting conversations with our friends and clients.
Although we never intended to do more than give Kevin 4 Y.O.U. 4 EVER birthday party of a lifetime, the sheer success of #Kampaign2015 reminded us that all successful campaigns truly do start from the heart. As we enter our 19th year as an agency, Kevin’s closing speech round up our thoughts for the future perfectly:
“I want to be a voice, your voice, for the underdogs and champion you the people, through better branding, identity and communication that will give us a better society and give all of you a better life. Let us fight for you. Vote for me, vote for Yellow Octopus.”
As the chief creative brain at Yellow Octopus for the past 18 years, Kevin was one of the 10 masters from the SEA region who had to select two out of 20 young guns aged 30 and below. He chose designers Shu and Sarah, who then had their profiles and portfolios showcased through the 10-20-30 platform – a beautiful publication printed on the best of Antalis papers, no less.
The Singapore leg of the project culminated in a design panel on the evening of 9 September 2015, with our Yellow Octopus Master and his 2 Young Guns taking the stage to candidly share about their work, philosophies and stories from their creative journeys.
At the end of it all, the exclusive project 10-20-30 by Antalis experience served as a meaningful reminder of the importance of faith, attitude and teamwork in the process of good design. The Yellow Octopus story would not have been possible without mutual faith in each other and resilient attitudes to press on despite setbacks.
But most importantly, we are deeply thankful for the support of Antalis and the greater creative community in laying the foundations and constantly improving the way we communicate through our work – breathing new life into our ideas time and time again.
Coming alongside them has always been a meaningful experience that takes us to the fringes of society and reveals the social needs so often invisible to our community. The opportunity to bring these stories of hope and humanity to light is but a small contribution in contrast to The Salvation Army‘s unceasing dedication to serve and love the less fortunate.
The Salvation Army 2015 Annual Report “While It Is Day” was inspired by the Christian faith to convey the urgency and purpose of their cause – to feed the hungry, protect the helpless and comfort the hurting while it is day.
Beyond moving tributes left by a multitude of mourners, people and local media alike observed how his departure galvinised and united our little island on a whole new level, especially as acts of kindness poured forth from the queuing grounds during his lying in state at Parliament House. For all Singaporeans and everyone who experienced the legacy of Mr Lee firsthand, our lives will not be the same again. Yet, we have a hope and bright future as we forge ahead with the exemplary spirit of our founding father. From all of us at Yellow Octopus, RIP LKY. May we never forget all that you have done for Singapore.
We are its Sons & Daughters.
Design has always been a sensorial experience, but knowing that our visuals were going to anchor sonic landscapes inspired us further. We pushed familiar boundaries to create our own psychedelic EDM Goddess for Illumi Nation, and drew from the other spectrum of art to bring classical music to life with soft watercolour hues for Synergy in Music 2014.
And wow… Being there at the actual events and watching the musicians make century old tunes soar with their mastery, and DJs morph digital beats into anthems sung by crowds of thousands… It was surreal! The passion for their craft was not only palpable in every note, but also in every perfectly timed silence. To have our work featured alongside their sheer amount of talent is a privilege we’ll humbly remember for life.
Through watching the diverse performances, we were reminded again that like music, all of design is a conscious act to connect, provoke, inspire. It’s easy to get lost in a familiar beat or to get caught up in the practice towards perfection.
But it’s the little nuances in volume and tone, the honesty that comes with sharing a story, the gratitude towards those who still listen, that are critical to either making our message a life-changing experience, or reducing it to white noise.
After an exciting year of “Attempting the Impossible”, our work for Antalis Singapore’s The Paperweight Awards and APB Singapore’s Brew a Better Future have both won merits, in the “Identity” and “3D Objects” categories respectively.
Yellow Octopus has also won two Bronzes at the Design for Asia Awards 2013 for the “Perfection in Imperfection/Imperfection in Perfection” recipe book and “The End is Near/A New Beginning is Here” calendar.
Flyers were given out to the general public and used to educate those approached by volunteers. As the campaign aimed to generate an awareness to stand up for our mothers and elderly, badges were given to these two groups of people to wear.
Check out the Stand Up for Our Singapore links and videos here:
#1: StandUpForSG Facebook
#2: Stand Up for Singapore Info (Vimeo)
#3: Stand Up For Our Singapore (Vimeo)
#4: What happened at Stand Up For Our Singapore 2012 (Vimeo)
It’s double celebration with an earlier win at the HOW Promotion Design Award for Outstanding Achievement!
Thank you for cheering us on with your continued support and collaboration. There will be greater things for us all in the days ahead. How sure are we? Very. Simply because – believing is seeing.
Chosen from 1,000 entries in 15 categories, 220 winning design projects from the competition were featured in the March 2012 issue of HOW Magazine. These represent the creative best of the design industry and were selected by renowned professionals Steve Gordon Jr. (independent creative at RDQLUS), Ann Willoughby (president and creative director of Willoughby Design), and Dale Doyle, creative director at Landor. These three judges selected the merit winners, outstanding achievement winners (requiring a perfect score from all of the judges), and one best of show winning design, which is selected from among the Outstanding Achievement winners.
How did we do?
We received the Best of Show for Perfection in Imperfection / Imperfection in Perfection. Born out of chef Janice Wong’s sensory experiment, HOW judges have called it “quite possibly, the most gorgeous cookbook in the world” and “a tour de force”, appealing to the professional chef, the aspiring home cook, the poet and the visual artist.” See the article here.
Most of the team had never been diving, so we took part in the discovery pool and dive session. When the time came for us to head out to sea, the weather was perfect, waters were calm and we were anxious – anticipation arose for those of us first-time divers. But all that was quickly replaced by awe and curiosity at the new world we found ourselves immersed in.
This trip exposed the team to situations in which we might never have ventured into when left to our own devices. We had an amazing experience and can’t wait for the next adventure. Bring it on!