The Mona Lisa

Isn’t it messed up that Leonardo Da Vinci never knew he painted the Mona Lisa? Like he knew he painted a portrait of Mona Lisa, but he didn’t know he painted The Mona Lisa. It’s funny because it used to motivate me to think that every step of his career led up to that painting. That the first stick figure he made was the first draft of all those things he would later create. It helps me to create casually. Even if your creation sucks, it’s practice for the next one. (That is practice for the next one.) And so on.

But then, you never quite reach it. In my head there will come a day when it’s no longer practice for the next one, because I’ve actually reached that point. I’ve made it. But the truth is, we never arrive there, we never know our Mona Lisa. Because it’s not like Da Vinci just painted it and then hung it in the Louvre. He probably just started preparing the next canvas. As far as he knew it might have been just another painting in a long line of paintings, and he never reached “it”, or got “there”, wherever there is.


Creative Endeavors

Today I was reading in an interview about how writing a novel is like giving birth to a baby, which I guess I’ve heard before and don’t we always describe creative endeavors as our children in some very lovingly pretentious creepy way.

But what’s interesting is that whoever was interviewed mentioned that if you don’t want a child, don’t get one. Like if you don’t actually want a kid, just don’t get one. Don’t get one because you should or it seems like something that would look or sound nice; Get a kid because you actually want one. You can write your story, paint whatever thing, but like, you really don’t have to. Like, that pressure is made up.

Now, it doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do it just because it’s hard. If you want to, you’ll have to know that you’re getting into something that’s a pretty big deal. And you’ll have to know that “want” does not mean a sudden flow of emotion that makes everything suddenly easy, but rather that you know that this is something you want to do, regardless. But it’s also a joy. And yeah, you should do it if you want to.

(The interview I was reading was from The Creative Independent, which completely unsponsored is like the best website ever, and they send me these cute emails with articles and – you know – general life advice. Below is todays.)


Height of summer pt. 2

It’s warm today. Hot and not really humid like Florida, but still so much worse because it’s not like this is a country where we have AC. I couldn’t do anything I wanted to after coming home from work, could barely stand because it all just suddenly hit me and my body’s never been good with radical temperature changes. I was just laying on the couch, not doing any of those productive things I had planned and felt bad about it. But then I was thinking about how much grace I would’ve had upon myself had I for example been sick. Yet there are so many other situations that actually affect me worse than ‘normal sickness’ but where I don’t allow myself to be excused. I think that for some reason – when analyzing myself or my situations – I look so much inside of me that I generally isolate myself from my circumstances. But we live in our circumstances. We shouldn’t be victims of them, but not acknowledging them leads to self pity in a different way. It’s good to sit down and feel what you feel. Disappointment over something. Fear about something else. We need to know our starting point and own up to ourselves, otherwise we can’t go to where we want to be – or even be where we are.

Sunday Thoughts

A few weeks ago I had the vision that waves were rising all around this garden, tall and mighty. Like the ocean, like the red sea. And I felt it tonight, standing out there. (And I wondered why it is not falling, why it is not crashing down on doubts and enemies, what are the waters waiting for?) I felt God saying that He’s separating me from it. I am learning to not be all the things I’m not. And first then the water can fall on my enemies without falling on me. How can God kill the army if we’re on the ocean floor at the same time? There’s a height and width and depth to the importance of faith in forgiveness and the death of sin and it being killed off in your own body.

Tae and flowers

There’s always a pile of A4 papers in front of my computer. I write my to do lists there, or my random thoughts, and when I’ve stared at the computer screen for too long I sometimes take a random pinterest picture and use it as a reference for some quick sketches. They always turn out nicer than they would if I had drawn them on actual good paper. Of course. The same way I always did my best drawings in the margins of class notes. I should go back to school and study something really boring.

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Anyway, here’s a quick sketch of the beautiful Kim Taehyung, in his iconic anime character look. I know I shouldn’t just draw remarkably pretty people, but it’s easy because the lines are so simple to follow.


Also, my watercolour palette doesn’t have black, so his outfit turned into whatever colours were close at hand. Creativity under limitation (just always works somehow.)

Identity (The Garden Inside)

I have chosen dirt over flowers, and picked up the places I used to grow my values in, to move them inside of me.

I have been blue flowers, from the places I grew up in and the family I’m in.

I have been pink flowers, from what I found along the streets in new countries, from what I decided to be in new places.

I have been a collection, I have gathered them from around me, and (tried to) let the influence shape me into something I like.

I am now picking up the roots of the garden and putting it inside of me, so that I never run out of colours from different continents. So that I never have to starve in a place that’s barren.

Now, I’m growing (myself) up inside.