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Blue Beetle Design | Keng Leong

Keng Leong is one half of Blue Beetle Design, a design company with their eyes trained on creativity all day, everyday. Their designs are both fun and poignant, with a lot of focus on the heart of the pieces.

ActuallyMAG speaks to Keng Leong to find out more about his life, art and inspirations.

Hey Keng Leong! Tell us a little bit about yourself!

Keng Leong: I’m one of the partner/design director in Blue Beetle Design – a health fanatic, a thinker, a creator… someone who takes time to appreciate the good things in life.

A day in your life, what occurs?

KL: Hit the gym in the morning, go to the office and check emails, meet with clients, have coffee breaks, brainstorm design ideas with my team…
Describe your humble abode.

KL: Home is at East Coast, a old 5-room HUDC filled with a mix of furniture. Ming style bench, Eames pieces – Lounge chair and ottoman, Red LCW, a pair of E15 Backenzahn Stools, an original Eames rocker I found in the bin recently!


What do you do in your free time?

KL: Observing people while drinking my black siu-siu-tai coffee at my favourite coffee stall. Browsing magazines and books at Basheer or Kinokuniya. Playing ‘We Rule’ with my iPad. Makan and catch up with my best kakis.

Recommend us some cool haunts in Singapore.

KL: Actually… Junkie’s Corner, P5, UNIQLO, ATOMI, Surrender, Supermama!


Tell us something about yourself that no one knows.
KL: I have a phobia of heights! I’ve tried to overcome it a few times but it doesn’t seem to work… I’m still scared of heights!


How do you define yourself as and designer?

KL: I provide design solutions to my clients.

What inspires your works?

KL: Anything I see or observe – for example, an old auntie wearing a floral blouse in Chinatown could inspire a nice colour palatte for a range of packaging box.

How much time or percentage of your time you indulge in doing creative things?

KL: 100% as I’m creative everyday!

Is there any designer/artist you relate to?

KL: I like how the Japanese artists/designers/architects/fashion designers think and their approach towards design.


Tell us more about the bags you designed to raise funds for Japan, what inspired you to do them.

KL: I visited Japan for the first time in Dec 2009 and fell in love with Japan –  I was inspired by what I saw – the people, the culture and design, shops concepts, fashion etc… I had to cancel my second trip to Japan this April due to the 11 Mar quakes and tsunami. Saw lots of video clips online and felt for the people in Japan. I feel that I should do some thing for Japan. I translate my feelings by creating the “PRAY FOR JAPAN“ logo. Posted it on FB and many of my friends like them. This sparked the idea of using the logos onto tote bag to raise funds for the earthquake victims. We printed 100 pieces of tote bags and they were sold out in just 2 days and raised $3,785.00!


What’s the best and worst thing about being an artist?

KL: The best thing is that your work is also your passion!

The worst thing is your passion is also your work!

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