Even after debuting as an artist through my first exhibition in Germany in 2011, I had been active without my personal website for a long time. As I supported my husband, who came to study abroad, raised my son, and I barely had time to draw and prepare for an exhibition, so I could not afford my own website and manage it. Then, in 2013, when I moved to the United States, I created a personal website in Weebly. Even then, I couldn't manage and update the newly designed website that I needed some time to settle in and adjust to it after moving New York, so I left it alone. As I continued to draw, the drawings piled up, but the text on the website remained the same. However, I was keeping applying for an open call to get an exhibition opportunity. Above all, I joined a local art association as a member and registered as a local artist on the website. Hence, there were visitors to my website.
When I first thought about whether to continue this path as an artist or go my previous path, my personality was my biggest problem, which did not like to reveal myself. Discovering my true self while painting has given me great joy, but it is a great challenge to tell people about this fact openly. Ever since I was little, especially from my mother, I used to get scolded whenever I tried to tell my story. My role in my family was to listen to my mother whenever she felt upset and depressed and solve her problems. Later, when I became an adult, or not long after, I realized that this role was an emotional trash can. From a very young age, I learned that I couldn't tell my mom whether it's hard or good. When I talked about hard times, she said that there are many more complicated people in the world than you, and when I talk about wanting to share good things, she says she hates seeing you happy and excited. Since I haven't been able to express myself for a long time, I have lived my life thinking that it is better to live quietly. And I felt that it was my mission to listen to and comfort those around me who were emotionally struggling. Looking back, it seems that I did not resent my mother like that, and I did not hate my personality that was formed that way because I had an exit called a painting. Painting requires finding beauty in even the smallest objects. Sometimes it is not beautiful, but you have to find beauty in it and draw it, just like Picasso's Gueronica, who painted the horrors of the Spanish Civil War.
But paradoxically, this attitude has had a positive effect on my life. So art is a big help in keeping me centered without being swept away by the various emotions of life. So I could easily forgive those who had exhausted my mind with countless hurtful words. It's like the lyrics of a song called Photograph by British singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran. So you can keep me
Inside the pocket of your ripped jeans
Holding me closer 'til our eyes meet
You won't ever be alone
And if you hurt me
That's okay, baby, only words bleed
But telling such my story was a very difficult process for me. However, as I have been painting steadily for nearly ten years, painting heals me and becomes a bridge through which I can go out into the world. So, I opened a blog and was able to talk about my work with me. As I do blogging, I feel that this space, like a diary that no one listens to, is gradually filling up. And I think blogging is like a kite flying by a child on a windy day.
When flying a kite for the first time, it is exciting to imagine the kite fluttering high in the sky and flying far away. However, you soon find out that the wind does not blow as expected or that it is not easy to control the wind even if it does. And even if I barely get on the wind, it's not enough, so I keep falling to the ground. Then, when suddenly the wind blows and soars into the sky, I am so excited, but I am disappointed to see it immediately fall. Sometimes it climbs well even if it's not hard, but sometimes it doesn't fly no matter how hard I pull the rope and run. Then, the child grabs the kite and runs happily. If you forget about the kite and focus on running, the kite will float halfway through. Then, if the wind helps a little, it climbs on a certain track and does not come down without effort. You will now know that the kite has started to fly. My blog is flying like a kite
As the number of visitors increased, I naturally got AdSense approval to decorate my website. After that, like everyone else, I start to care about visitors. If I don't do anything and don't post interesting posts, my visitors will plummet. This is a sign that the kite is not yet in orbit. However, I am trying to blog like a child who smiles and runs while holding a connection without worrying about this trajectory. I plan to write down the process to see what the results will be. Just as drawing creates a positive attitude in life, I believe that blogging will also bring me another experience. For reference, my child is so excited when he runs with a kite, but when the kite rises high in the sky, it gets boring. Maybe I'm happy to be able to hold a kite like this and run.
Myungja Anna Koh