Rasyid is a dreamy, colourful crafter and designer, someone who feels his surroundings keenly.
(I fell so much in love with his robot heads that I consigned him to make a special piece for me – pics soon!) His sense of wonderment and his love for his work reminds me to never let my inner art fairy die. I took some time to ask him what makes his world goes round, and he is unsurprisingly charming with his responses.
GD : I hear you’re an aspiring interior designer : how did your journey into design begin?
Rasyid Bastamam (RB) : My journey started when my mother and I kept renovating my room. We rearranged the furniture many times, until I got the positions I wanted. And I’ve always decorated my room with the stuff I make, choosing my own bedsheets, revamping my info/inspiration board from its boring white foam background to a striped-blue pattern using Manila card. I even painted my Sea Blue feature wall myself!
RB (cot’d) : So I always knew that I wanted to do something artistic and creative. I didn’t register for P.Seni (art) for SPM so my interview for Fine Art in UITM didn’t go to well. But I’m glad, because after the interview, I started taking art classes and found out that I love to draw furnitures and spaces. That’s how I discovered my path to Interior Design.
I would say I started crafting when I found out that I could sew! So I crafted some Owl & Moustaches pins out of felt for a few friends of mine until they told me to start selling them for the Doodle Box Lah.
GD : How do you feel this sense of “not rushing” and pausing affects the way you produce your crafts?
RB : Being in a rush is not comfortable to me. When you’re in a rush everything will go mental. Crafting is one of those things where you need to have some patience. You will feel the work more when you are more collected. Everytime I finish crafting something, I will keep it for a few days before I put it out because you never know what you can do to improve your work.
I’m very Pattern and Texture based. Texture just speaks to me. It just screams “feel it”. All I wanna do is touch it and think of how it could work in other spaces or objects besides the place that I stumbled upon it. To me, texture is what grips you.
GD : How would you describe your style?
RB : Geometric shapes always open my eyes. Geometry brings excitement to me, but I’m not that into smooth edges. I like textures, I need “grip”. I love the sharp irregularity that you can achieve with a platonic solid. I prefer angles that are not too controlled, unlike a 90 degree angle.
GD : What’s an ideal Sunday morning to you?
RB : Perfect hues of blue coming into my room, very breezy, me looking at the trees outside my window and having the classic Scrambled Eggs w/ Baked Beans and Toast for breakfast! I’m so happy that there are still some rainforest trees around my area to look at. They are PERDY.
GD : Who is your design hero?
RB : Architecture-wise, Tadao Ando (a Japanese autodidact architect) would be my hero, I love how he emphasizes and embraces ‘haiku’ (I would say ‘emptyness’) in a space, where most spaces now are piled up with everything. I would love to see his buildings up close.
Varvara Stepanova would be my heroine! She’s a Constructivist Russian artist. I love her textile patterns and designs! And all her work could really work in a lot of spaces. If I could reupholster my mum’s old sofa with her designs, it would be AMAZING.
GD : What gear do you use?
RB : I’m using film cameras. I have 3 cameras from Lomography. People might think that I’m just a collector but I’m not. My Fisheye 1 and Supersampler have scars and dents all over them. So, it shows that I bring them out and use them everyday, those are The Golden Rules of Lomography. I just love the “”surprise”" effect that you can get with film.
RB (cot’d) : Now I’m using my Sprocket Rocket and a 41-year old SLR camera, the Olympus Trip 35. Its inherited from Ayah (my dad). he gave it to me on my 21st birthday. It was the highlight of my life when I touched the camera and tested the lens for the first time.
I use my Canon 550D to capture my stuff and college work. As for lighting, I’m really fortunate to have my room facing the afternoon sun, so my room is bright as could be. If it’s dark, I use my study lamp from IKEA.
I’m not good at editing photos on my PC so I don’t have any gear on that. For Instagram, I use the amazing Phonto or Typic apps.
GD : What materials inspire you the mostest?
RB : I am really into wood. I’m now working a lot with MDF blocks and some kind of softwood cubes. I would love to work with tree bark… flatten it up and maybe do something with it. And once I get my electric hand saw, I will try working with plywood to make more functional, sturdy crafts!
GD : What social media platform are you most comfortable sharing on?
RB : Instagram for sure! When I was using my BB (Blackberry), I didn’t feel the hype of Insta, and I found it weird that my friends were taking so much time to edit a tiny square photo. But as soon as I got my iPad, it was the first app that I downloaded. haha! and now I know why.
Click on the pic to go to The Doodle Box Lah’s FB page!
RB (cot’d) : Tumblr is one of my space to get inspiration. I do share a lot of stuff there if you look at the previous posts. some of the posts are pictures on how I made my crafts. I would love to have my own official page soon. That still needs some work.
GD : Where did the seriousness begin?
What’s your earliest memory of you taking aesthetics seriously?
RB : I think my first time being very articulate about aesthetics was when I decided to change the style of my room, asking Mama to bring me to home department stores to pick out more maturely-patterned bedsheets. Solid patterns and colours, making sure everything works together and such.
RB (cot’d) : I’d like to think that all this attention to detail comes from my genes. The DIY skills come from my father’s side of family, meanwhile the creativity, fine art and sewing skills come from my mother’s side.
GD : What would your superpower be if you could choose one?
RB : Ouh! I did a project on this! The outcome wasn’t great though. Y’know, I was RUSHING. So I would be an Artist wearing a stereotypical French beret and my powers would be able to make my doodles come to life in a short amount of time. I could paint the air, sky, clouds, you name it! But all my creations would only last a few hours. Trust me, no one could be that powerful.
GD : What do you collect?
RB : I used to collect key-chains from around the world, given to me by my parents, friends, and neighbours from their travels. But the craze has already subsided. Now I collect photos, antique quirky objects that I stumble upon in my house. Mostly stuff that was brought here by my parents from the UK. And they tell me stories when I show them these objects, just so I can collect all the wonderful stories of their past.
Rasyid found this triangle from a discard pile and strung it up beautifully.
RB (cot’d) : I love collecting stories. I wish there simpler ways to document them. If Albus Dumbledore’s Pensieve existed, my life would be so much easier. hahaha xD
[GD: Rasyid's one of the biggest Potterheads I know, bless him!]
GD : What movie would your friends be surprised that you like?
RB : It’s funny to say this, [Editor's Note: that's the point, hehe] but I like (not love okay…) the last Twilight movie, HAHAHA. People should give it a break, its not that bad. I’m just annoyed that the “last big fight” didn’t really happen.
GD : What are your favorite sort of pens to write with?
RB : Pencils are my doodlings’ best friends. But I normally use Artline drawing pens, since I’m in a drawing-based course in university. I use YOKEN art markers.
GD : Coffee or Tea?
RB : A lil’ bit of both. I have been immune to coffee since my very first sip, so I do not have a problem with coffee. I love Mocha! But I do prefer tea ! I’m currently obsessed with black tea! I have it everyday! Either with a teaspoon of honey or a slice of lemon!
GD : If you had to have pie every day, what pie would you choose?
RB : I can have my Mama’s apple pie any time! In fact, I’m having some now! *nom noms* But I really do miss my Mama’s chicken pot pie. Mmhmmm, Yummy!
GD : Mac or PC?
RB : PC! But I’m sure I will try Mac here and there, soon!
Click on this photo to go to Rasyid’s lush Instagram!
GD : Which person in the media (thesedays or in the past) would you never ever invite to dinner at your place?
RB : I’m not sure, the only person I can think of is Joan Rivers just because I just can’t tolerate that much sarcasm. And it (sarcasm) is embraced by so many people. I just don’t think it’s funny.
GD : What are you listening to right now?
RB : Live Your Life by Yuna is stuck in my head in a good way. Love that song! Been singing it in my car all day! And I stumbled upon PrinceYeti @Justin Speed. He makes some really good electro-pop music that you can use in videos. My favourites would be Triangles and Coco.
GD : I notice you love fonts (almost) as much as I do. Share your favourite!
RB : My personal favourite would be the ones I use mostly in edits like HelveticaNeue, Avenir, DraconianTypewriter and Backspacer Tribute to Pearl Jam (‘cuz its fun!)
GD : If you could tell the 9 year old Rasyid something he didn’t know then, what would you say?
RB : I would tell mini-me to grow out his curly wurly hair and to not keep the ’2 centimetre gondol look’ till Form 3 (age 15). And I would say to him, “Just be patient about those bullies”.
Bullies? Well, if they saw you now, they would see how you’ve grown into someone we’re proud of despite their nonsense. Thanks, Rasyid, so very much for sharing so much with me. You’re a doll!
I’ve had to change Foughtful Fridays to Meander Mondays. I’m busy with my new art gallery project (more soon), and also because I like being with you throughout the week. You and me can forget about the world awhile on the weekends, which is what weekends are for, I’da thought!