Raapow is a film collective of four people, namely Lincoln Yeo, Adam Choong, Tan Si En and Kristen Ong. The talented bunch first came together in their first year at Ngee Ann Polytechnic where they are all pursuing a Diploma in Film, Sound and Video.
The chemistry within the group was discovered early on as they worked together on a school assignment. Lincoln, Adam and Kristen all leaned towards a similar aesthetic and working style before Si En came on board sharing the same vision and possessing unrivalled organization and team management skills. Or as the rest of the group puts it, she came on board ‘for free food on shoot’.
When quizzed on the rather abstract name of their group, Raapow explained that their name is actually an abbreviation of an online photo exhibition, Raised As A Pack Of Wolves by Genevieve Chua. It was the inspiration and working title of the first project the group worked on together and evidently, the name stuck.
Their peers in school as well as their lecturers hold this talented bunch of diverse talents in high regard. It’s not hard to see why either. Despite having limited resources, these students have been constantly churning out industry-standard work. In fact, one of their school assignments was to shoot a music video for a local band. Raapow collaborated with Monster Cat and the resulting video has been making its rounds in the music scene, being featured on sites like Fever Avenue and Spin Or Bin Music.
From top: 1. MONSTER CAT - Underwater (Directed by Kristen. Produced by Xin Ying. DOP by Lincoln.)
With such a promising future ahead, the group remains pragmatic and insists that there’s still much work to be done. For the most part, all four of them can see themselves in the local arts scene despite their different individual aspirations. Their ultimate aim is to improve or change a certain aspect and perception that the public has of the local arts industry.
In addition to their differing ideals and ambitions, Raapow is made up of really interesting personalities as well, which contributes to a very intriguing group dynamics. Adam has been described as having an ‘obsession with cleanliness’ while Lincoln is a ‘dolphin’. To round that off, Si En is the leprechaun of the group while Kristen remains a mystery. These descriptions are definitely a true testament to the open-ended character of filmmakers, where self-interpretation is key.
“Create your own aesthetic. Create your own vision. Know what makes you different and follow it to the end.”
In staying true to that quirky mindset, Raapow has credited ‘The Inspiration Tree’ as the inspiration behind their work and has stated that they share the same hobby of collecting old television sets.
When asked what they had to say to fellow aspiring filmmakers and artists, the gang stresses the importance of knowing one's aims and motives in being part of the industry and reason for doing so despite monetary gain being a potential distraction.
All four of them cite creating their own styles and signatures as a very high priority and desperately want to avoid falling into the generic pool doing only commercials and corporate work.
All the members of Raapow are currently in their final year at Ngee Ann Polytechnic and it’s safe to say that the skills acquired over their three years there will go a long way in their goals of taking the local arts scene by storm. For more updates and new materials from Raapow, check out their recently launched website!