Tuesday, October 31, 2006

ambigram: today.paper

Singapore's most widely read tome.. Why? Err.. because it's free.. And because Singaporeans want something else to look at other than the same old faces in the MRT rush-hour morning crowd. Here for its online version.

Other local daily: The New Paper and Berita Harian.
reflection: Bhagavad.Gita

Bhagavad Gita: An ancient Sanskrit text.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

nagfa's Ambigram Challenge November '06

The end is nigh for October '06... and the pending November arrives with a new Challenge. As promised, this month's nagfa's Ambigram Challenge (NAC) is special. As an initiative to foster a stronger bond between the ambigram family (which is growing every month!), we - nagfa - have decided to invite a fellow ambigramista once every four or five months (the concept is still in its infancy; we'll see the general response) to contribute their own challenge (a phrase and a theme).

This month's first guest 'challenger' is Jose Fraga from Brazil, a much-respected ambigramista and commentator in the ambigram scene. Describing himself in his own words (we've decided to keep it in its original state as we feel the humour and punchline behind each line may be lost when translated, and furthermore, language should not be a barrier between us):

'My name is Jose Fraga. Fraga is 'scarp' in Portuguese. I'm in this wonderful planet has amused 60 years. I have three sons and three grandsons. They have genetic mine copyright: all are glad. I'm journalist and humorist I live of the words, them I support me (natural that I had an affair with ambigrams). Already I published some books of humour and I write in sites and blogs. My professional interests include philosophy, jazz, SF, poetry, illusions of optics, and other illusions of the life that enchant me. And very important: my bad English does not reflect my enthusiasm for the new friends for the world. But, this is not an authorized biography!'

This month's phrase: Laughter is Life

This month's theme: Humorists, Satirists and Comedians

Please submit designs to:
nagfa_ambigram@hotmail.com
hopefully before 22nd of November (for allowance for us to compile them before December). Please also include the chosen word for the design (especially for 'theme'), your name (pseudonym allowed), country of origin, and website/blog (if any).

Due to the many entries we received, we encourage participants to limit their entries for each category. We - nagfa: Naguib & Fadilah - wish all participants, regular and new, a creative and fruitful time in finding solutions for the challenge. Thank you in advance for giving NAC the support and success for these past 3 months. Hopefully for the future too..

salam,
nagfa
singapore

Friday, October 27, 2006

reflection: oag

One of Malaysia's influential indie-geek-rock'n'roll bands. Masters of wordplay ('beautifool', 'adhorrible', 'istrimewa', 'Sabtuday', 'akustatik', etc.); ambiguity (a song entitled 'Slumber' hints an inter-language homonym : 'Selamba', meaning 'aloof, indifferent or phlegmatic' in Malay) and juxtaposition. Liberal creators / users of a hybrid language - incorporating English, Malay and Arab - in their lyrics, thus not a favourite among the language purists.

See here for their Malay song 'Per-my-suri': 'Permaisuri' meaning 'queen' in Malay, the 'my' could be a hint to Malaysia's cyber-domain as in its usage 'yahoo.com.my'.

See here for their English song '60's TV'.

See here for their English song 'For Whatever'.
concept piece: lollipop

humble apologies

magic-trick

Attention: Humble apologies on our part for forgetting to include Mario Vergara's (Chile) NAC solution.. This great design has been updated in the gallery: here. Thank you for the vast support in making NAC a monthly rendesvouz for ambigramists / ambigrammers / ambigramistas worldwide.

salam,
nagfa: naguib and fadilah,
singapore

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

NAC October '06 phrase

The third posting of nagfa's Ambigram Challenge (NAC). The phrase given for this month - October 2006 - was 'magic trick'.

Like true magicians, the ambigramistas had come out with various illusions as solutions. Scroll down the alphabetically (country-wise) arranged entries and be taken away by the clever, clever interpretations by each and every ambigramista. There's the 'traditional' rotational ambigrams, horizontal and vertical reflections, even a figure-ground solution!

nagfa - Naguib & Fadilah - express our admiration and gratitude to the ambigramistas for the support and the enthusiasm for ambigrams and NAC. We applaud you all!


amafirlian
(belgium)

.
.
cleber
(brazil)
.
.
fraga
(brazil)
.
.
matrixadi
(brunei)

.
.robert maitland
(canada)

.
.
mario
(chile)

.
.


.
&
.
'truco magico'
alberto portacio
(colombia)
.
.
derren lee poole
(england)
.
.
amit
(india)
.
.
zycopetryx
(india)
.
.
serpiente
(mexico)
.
.
nagfa
(singapore)
.
.
ruel
(south korea)
.
.
.
&
.
jordi serra
(spain)
.
.
txescu
(spain)
.
.
bill densmore
(u.s.a.)
.
.
onetrickpony
(u.s.a.)

NAC October '06 theme

Welcome to the third instalment of nagfa's Ambigram Challenge (NAC). The theme given for this month - October 2006 - was Myths and Legends.

The entries are of very high quality indeed, touching from the universally known dark characters, to the very localized ones. What we like to highlight here is the fact that mysteries and the unknown realms have been deeply ingrained in every culture, and it is somewhat interesting to know that we have that as a common thread to share and to discuss. nagfa sincerely thank you for the support and the willingness to share such awesome works.

'mae iara': Brazilian mermaid
fraga
(brazil)
.
.
'grim reaper'
matrixadi
(brunei)
.
.
'dragons'
robert maitland
(canada)
.
.
'minotaur'
homero
(chile)
.
.
'witch'
derren lee poole
(england)
.
.
'coatlicue'
.
&
.
'dragon'
.
&
.
'kondoy': king / lord or messiah
serpiente
(mexico)
.
.
'minotaur'
.
&
.
'pontianak': a female-vampire in Malay folklore
nagfa
(singapore)
.
.
'george & the dragon'
txescu
(spain)
.
.
'shiva': Hindu's Destroyer God
bill densmore
(u.s.a.)
.
.
'mystery of Atlantis'
onetrickpony
(u.s.a.)

Sunday, October 22, 2006

ambigram: selamat-hari.raya-aidilfitri

In 2 days, Muslims all around the world will be celebrating Aidilfitri (Eidulfitri in some countries). This celebration on the first day of the month of Syawal marks the end of the fasting month of Ramadhan. We will congregate to mosques or open fields (even stadiums in Singapore) for the Eid' Prayers before visiting friends and relatives.

*'Hari Raya' literally means Big ('Raya') Day ('Hari') in the Malay language.


ambigram: maaf-zahir.&-batin

Hari Raya Aidilfitri is also a time of forgiveness, when families and friends visit each other and strengthen the love and bond between them. It is also customary to say 'Maaf Zahir & Batin' or 'I ask for forgiveness ('maaf') for the mistakes seen ('zahir') and unseen ('batin')'.

We, nagfa - Naguib and Fadilah - wishes all a 'SELAMAT HARI RAYA AIDILFITRI!' May we work together towards strengthening the love and bond between us all.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

ambigram: inner-city-youth

One of the songs in Big Mountain's Resistance album. A reggae band (it's initial B.M. is a nod to the legend Bob Marley) based in North America, this album has got to be one of the best arranged and with the sincerest lyrics we've ever come across.

As teachers (Nag and Fa are teachers), this song does struck a chord: it speaks to the youth (inner city youth) about the empowerment through knowledge and education.

Some other tracks worth mentioning in the album are 'Get Together' (a cover of 'Youngblood' with the chorus 'come on people now / smile on your brother / everybody get together / try to love one another right now' used in Nirvana's 'Territorial Pissings'), 'Know Your Culture' ('But soon the culture will be all lost, and the capitalist man will be the cause'), 'Where Will The Children Play?' ('I know we're changing day to day / But where will the children play?' talking about excessive modernization and urbanization), 'Love Is The Only Way' (which has a line declaring 'Mohammad, Jesus and Moses' as God's messengers, uniting three major religions, and promoting oneness among mankind) and 'Bobbin' and Weavin'' ('...it's the same ol' bobbin' and weavin'... the same ol' games of deceivin'...' a song on 'politricks').

Friday, October 20, 2006

ambigram: lithium

A Nirvana song; to really narrow-mind the meaning.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

ambigram: abdullah-mahathir

Rediscovered design. Designed on the bus on the way back to Singapore after the PhotoFest adventure. Inspired by Malaysia's pseudo-volatile political scene: the present Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi and his predecessor, Mahathir Mohamad.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

ambigram: love&-peace

Another design on peace here.
reflection: brasil-lizard

Designed for the three Brazilian ambigrammistas - Cleber Faria, Lindsley Daibert and Marcelo Kunimoto... and of course, the perpetually-remembered Jose Fraga..

Why 'Lizard'? They see things from new perspectives: upside down.

Saturday, October 14, 2006


Priceless discovery! Evidently, they named a street after Nagfa: Naguib & Fadilah, somewhere in Brasilia, Brazil!

Or maybe not! A design from our cherished humorist friend from Brazil, Fraga.. with the sweet message:

Naguib Loves Fadilah
Fadilah Loves Naguib
Friends admire both

(Everyone say 'aaahhhh..') :)
A special posting. A nod to some of Singapore's Ambigram Logoes:

The first one is the logo belonging to Singapore Press Holdings (SPH), the company which brings us the daily newspapers. What's beautiful about this logo - other than the fact that it is an ambigram - is how it incorporates the initials (SPH) and at the same time, designed to resemble an old unfurled parchment - thematically linking to news, messages and newpapers. Brilliant!


The second logo is MRT's (Mass Rapid Transit), Singapore's version of the train system / network interconnecting the whole island nation:


The next logo is actually an updated version of the previous logo, again portraying total connectivity:


What's appealing about this logo is that it managed to also allude a stylised / simplified version of Singapore's map (compare to the actual map below, stunning!):


Saving the best for last, a reflection which is also a palindrome!


Nora Haron is a Singapore-born shoe designer whose works are getting deserved recognition worldwide. *For those unfamiliar with the Malay naming system, Nora is her name while Haron is her father's name. Check out her designs here.