A Dot - The Universe

My method of expressing interests is heavily dependent on visual analysis and creating physical creations. My action of perceiving information and responses tend to require a visualizing process and tactile experience. I look at things and touch them to observe their shapes, colors, structures, textures, and ultimately to feel and understand the objects. Among many different outlets and mediums of visualization, drawing has always been a big part of my practice. It allows me to preserve the memorable and precious moments in my life, to overcome fearful and tragic experiences, to attract fanciful dreams and fantasy, to express my thoughts and ideas, or to challenge and achieve the concept of pure creativity - the goal for new. According to Tim Parsley, Manifest's former Assistant Director and Drawing Center Director, drawing slows down the process of observation and gives more time to examine the subject. He says, “We draw in order to see. To the non-drawer, this is counterintuitive and seems to place an interfering activity between the eye and the object seen. After all, if the goal is seeing, why not just look? But to draw is to slow our seeing, think about our seeing, and hopefully, over time, understand what we are seeing.” 

On the other hand, language often fails me. My thoughts sporadically develop and spontaneously merge together affecting one another without having clear divisions and they tend to disappear without even noticing. Considering language is a socially understood and practiced comprehensive way to organize and deliver intangible thoughts, I understand that it has a remarkable efficiency as a tool for collecting ideas, communicating with each other, and preserving them for later. 

This project started from an effort to combine linguistic approach with drawing to empower my thoughts, including desire, clothing, body, and space. I hope this exercise become an anchor for my studio practice.  

Link to the full essay





Ninth Letter Project

Sometime last year, one of my friends put a green book two inches away from my face, screaming “I got the new Issue of Ninth Letter!! I am so excited!!!” I have to admit that that was the first time I had ever heard of it, but as I flipped through the book, I was immediately impressed. Nice designs, colors, photos and type settings…. yes. lots of “words" in it. I liked it. I wasn't sure that l would read the whole thing, but it was a nicely designed object which made me want to have my own copy. Very unique. 

the cover of Spring/Summer 2014 issue – Vol. 11, No. 1

the cover of Spring/Summer 2014 issue – Vol. 11, No. 1

That was my first impression of the Ninth Letter.

Months later, I received an email from Matt Peterson, who is a professor in the graphic design program at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, asking if I was interested in working with the Ninth Letter design team as an Illustrator. ‘Oh the green book!! Yes!! Why not!!!!’  I participated in the project for the past few month with graphic designers. The book finally came out about a week ago.

Ninth Letter is a collaborative project, organized by the Graduate Creative Writing Program in conjunction with School of Art + Design at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. The writing submissions are from all over the world, and the creative writing editing team decides what to feature. With the chosen material, the designer team creates a visual product that goes along with the contents (or not). My mission was to create some illustrations for the three Ninth Letter's 2015 Literary Awards winners in each categories; Fiction, Creative Nonfiction, and Poetry. 

Here are some of the drawings for the project.

for " In the Year of No Sleep  by  Corey Van Landingham

for "In the Year of No Sleep by Corey Van Landingham

for " See also: A history of glassmaking"  by   Kristen N. Arnett

for "See also: A history of glassmaking" by Kristen N. Arnett

for  My Own Good Daemon  by   Michael Gracey

for My Own Good Daemon by Michael Gracey

A random one

A random one

Oh! and yes! I happened to make the imagery for the cover of this issue as well. I thought of this book as a physical entrance that connects/divides to the other world. I made a layer that represents the wall between two different world and put holes on it. I was hoping that the reader would have the curiosity of things that exist under the book cover. JoeCarpenter designed the awesome cover using my photo. Thank you Eli Craven for helping me with photographing.

The original photograph 

The original photograph 

The final product, print, real fabric piece, and Pixel, the cat

The final product, print, real fabric piece, and Pixel, the cat

Thank you all for the awesome experience! YEAY!