Band of Doodlers: Singapore
Mas Shafreen tells us how interactive arts can make a real difference, and why white space is the enemy of his sketch gang
Band of Doodlers is a collective of Singaporean illustrators on a mission to rid the world of white space. Sprawling canvases, glass murals, walls, floors, ceilings… indoors or out, no surface is safe from the group and its spidery sketches.
It was just six short months ago when Mas Shafreen – better known as wanton doodle – founded the group. In that time its number has swelled from 10 initial members to today being over a hundred strong.
“When I started the group I never expected it to grow to this size in such a short space of time,” Mas says. “However, BOD is inclusive by design. We welcome anyone who can hold a marker and is passionate about drawing.”
Since its inception, the group has doodled live and to commission for Starbucks, the National Arts Council and at the Singapore Grand Prix.
“Our events are platforms for cocreation,” Mas says. “I believe that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts, which is why I encourage collaboration among artists. We co-create pieces. As much as people love to interact, amazing stuff happens when we hit a mural as a group. Most importantly, we have fun.”
While providing opportunities for its members to network and exchange ideas, the Doodlers as a group also acts as evangelist for interactive arts, promoting drawing as a social pastime through its live performances.
“We meet almost every week for doodling events and performances, or simply to bond and exchange ideas. But we also conduct workshops, visual recording exercises and team building activities to encourage camaraderie and self-discovery through doodling.”
Mas says that there’s no hierarchy within the group, with members taking turns to lead events. He simply helps his artists manage each project, with the ultimate aim of recruiting more Doodlers along the way.
“I’m hoping we expand and our membership continues to grow globally. It’ll make our plans for world domination over blank spaces a heckuva lot easier!”