Self evaluation WIP

Developing a visual language that communicates vulnerability and humour has been one of the main focuses in my practice. Previously, I realised that I have been working on similar content. This might be because the content often came from my personal experience which was fairly limited. I wanted to work on a wider range of content and see how the visual language changes.

I iterated in different ways of storytelling and mediums, including drawing, writing, photography and comics. I iterate, reflect and re-iterate constantly. This method is useful in finding something interesting and meaningful that can be contributed to the work.  As it says in Conditional Design Workbook, “We search for unexpected but correlative emergent patterns.”, thinking through making is significant to me as a practitioner, as I can imagine and re-imagine the work again and again.

A big part of my practice has been interacting and engaging with the audience. I have been doing research on vulnerability and loneliness. It became particularly significant in the year of the pandemic. Previously, I experimented with various ways in prompting the audience for creative input, for example asking for a short story and asking for a text message in emojis. I noticed these methods were not as engaging as it could be. This is perhaps because the interaction only happened when I asked for input from the audience.

In the “I’m Fine” project, I designed a new mechanism that better interacts with the audience, in which they are prompted to submit a story, I would draw it, then they would receive one of the drawings as an exchange. In this way, they are not only interacting with me but also strangers, of which the drawings were based on. This method is meaningful in increasing the level of engagement within this project. To provoke engagement, I have also considered hosting offline meetups and workshops so that participants can share their stories in person. However, because of the pandemic, there was not a good time to do so this year. Now, the interactions remain individual and anonymous. 

Taking the piss out of daily lives has been a main focus in my practice. It is also a way to ease the pain from loneliness. I wanted to introduce it to my audience in the hope of making them feel better about being alive. Initially, I began with making humorous drawings on prompts given by my audience, and sharing them on social media. The whole interaction was short like a snippet. Neither the aim nor the context was communicated. 

I decided to design a mechanism that subtly introduces a more positive attitude towards unfortunate stories, hence I started the project “I’m fine”. Within it, I asked the participants to send me their story and end it with the phrase “I’m fine.”- a phrase that is full of denial and self affirmation. From some of the feedback received, it suggests closure to the participants’ stories. It acts as a reminder that they want to believe that they are going to be fine. Ending a story with “I’m fine.” validates their wishes to feel better.

The act of sharing also helped ease the pain of others and “letting them know that they are not alone”, according to one of the participants. I asked a few participants how they felt about receiving a stranger’s story. Some of them found it almost funny to read the stories. They were often intrigued to know what other people’ lives are like.

As I continue working on these works, I felt the need to tell my own story. Hence, as a response to the project “I’m Fine”, I created an illustrated book about how a person convinces herself/himself to feel fine in loneliness. It summarizes the attitude of the practice – “I’m fine.” or more accurately – “I want to be fine”.

638 words


My practice explores a visual language that investigates loneliness and humour by exchanging intimate stories.

Humour is subjective. It has been a work in progress in tailoring it. I am particularly interested in self mocking and taking the piss out of the near-pathetic events in our lives. In my work, I constantly use text as a caption to add to the drawing. This text is often a response or a comment to the events. The drawings often situate in a minimal space, staged with a nervous-looking human character. By doing so, the drawings suggest the vulnerability of the protagonists and ridiculous-ness of being in the event. 

Prompting and engaging with the audience are essential in my practice. I have explored different ways in prompting the audience for creative input. These iterations include asking the audience for a text message in emojis, asking them for a short piece of writings, prompting them to write a caption for one of my drawings etc. By iterating and engaging with the audience, these strangers and I started to connect through prompts and drawings. 

Since then, I have decided to combine these intentions and create work that is both meaningful to both me as an illustrator and my audience. The year of 2021 started off lonely and isolated. It has been particularly important to ease the loneliness by taking things lightly. In project “I’m Fine.”, I collect stories that trigger loneliness from strangers and I would draw them. I often approach these stories by taking only a part or a prop from it and reimagining when things are taken slightly out of context. What would happen if the participant views the story as an outside, like watching a tv show? This approach often changes the focus of the narrative, making a joke but not making fun of other’s pain. 

The project also proposes the idea of empowering people to make meaningful connections. The audience receive one of the drawings based on other people’s stories. The exchange of stories brings a moment of joy or some laughters, which makes this connection with strangers meaningful. From reading stories from strangers and drawings that take things lightly, we get a peek at someone’s life. Although the authors of the stories are strangers to us, we connect with them in the moment.

“I’m fine” is a phrase full of denials and self-affirmation. It seems like a default response to incidents that triggers sorrow. We say if often because we want to believe that we are going to be fine. By incorporating “I’m fine” in the stories, it suggests some closure to the loneliness. It is the perfect sentence that summarise the attitude of my practice – “I’m fine

Week 6 – 12 May


“I’m Fine” attempts to ease the pain of loneliness by taking things lightly and empowering people to make meaningful connections by sharing their stories. The project can act as an outlet of emotions and/or an alternative way to seeing things differently, hopefully wittilly. 

In this project, participants are asked to submit a story of a small incident that triggers loneliness. I will then draw it. Each participant will receive one of the drawings that wasn’t their own. In this way, they are sharing loneliness and empathy with strangers. 

Here, participants are asked to end their story submissions with “I’m Fine.” – a phrase full of denials and self-affirmation. It seems like a default response to incidents that triggers sorrow. We say it often because we want to believe that we are going to be fine. It is almost ironic and comedic how much we want to feel positive when something sad happens. Essentially, the aim of the project is to cheer people up by taking things lightly and humorously. By writing “I’m Fine”, I hope it provides some closure to the participant’s lonely story.

The year of 2021 started off lonely and isolated. This project proposes the idea that taking the piss out of yourself eases the pain. The drawings here use humour as a medium to provide a different perspective to the story. It is particularly true when things are taken slightly out of context. A part of the story is usually taken out as a base for re-imagination. What would happen if the participant views the story as an outsider, like watching a tv show? This part of the story is used as a prompt to change the focus of the narrative. The comedy is no longer about the whole story but a part of the story. 

The project proposes the idea that people can make meaningful connections within intimacy. The process of connecting with others can be vague, mysterious, almost literary. It’s like reading a book. We get to know a little bit of someone’s life by reading about their stories. Although the author or the characters are strangers to us, we connect with them in the moment.

Week 21 – 28 April

This week, I worked on:

  • Shamelessly message people for a shout out or participation
  • More drawings
  • Questions – write about why I started this project and why this project is important to me and my audience
  • Workshop plan to pitch to others

Here are some thoughts from tutorials, chats and production surgeries.


  • Why do people need to participate?
  • Why do you think it is important?
  • How is empathy circulated in this project?
  • Why hand drawn mail?
  • Does it have similarities with art therapy? In offering comfort? Seeking comfort?
  • What is the communication in offering help? Am I helping? Am I just a communication/visualization tool? Am I going to give visual form to people’s stories?
  • Why is it important to share through intimacy?
  • How is it helping to others in bringing the community together?
  • What is meaningful to me in this project/in my practice?

So far, I only have some answers to:

  • What is meaningful to me in this project/in my practice?

In my practice, I enjoy making the regular normal things look different. 

In this project, I enjoy building the conversation/engagement meaningful for both me and strangers. Sometimes I receive feedback from strangers on Instagram about one of my recent work and we will chat about it. The act of chatting and approaching each other made my day. It made me feel happier. I think there is a nice effect from talking about everything. The act of sharing thoughts is meaningful to both of us.

  • Why hand drawn mail/sending a drawing back to the participant?

There are a few reasons. First, this project started as a passion project – I wanted inspirations and inputs that help my own creative process. So in order to get as much input as possible, “sending a drawing back” will act as an incentive for others to participate. Second, personally, drawings and stories that live in digital space feels very distant. Since the stories are intimate, I would like to add the intimacy to the circulation/exchange in the experience, from the audience point of view. Receiving something physical and hand drawn/hand written feels more intimate. Audience are able to touch it and look at it closely instead of scrolling down the screen.

  • Why do people need to participate?

There is not a definitive answer to why people need to be part of it. But some of the responses from participants may explain a bit better. “Thank you, for this project, for making me think about my triggers of loneliness and for letting me know that I am not alone. I hope you are doing well in this time and find this to be a creative outlet, hopefully carrying you through all the challenges we all face on a daily basis.”

  • Why do you think it is important?

Right now, this project is meaningful to both me and my audience. To me, it fuels my creative process. To (some of) my audience, it acts as a outlet for their emotions/stories and a platform for social interactions.

  • How is it helping to others in bringing the community together?

I don’t think the “community” bit is coming through yet. Maybe the design of this project doesn’t include a space for community yet.


  1. Text placement
  • How to incorporate text with drawing?
  • What if text invades into the drawing? So the text act like drawings?
  1. Use all the space of the postcard
  • How can I fully expand to the edges of the postcard?
  • Angles?

Now the drawings are black and white, drawing in a sketch. It is naive, approachable. Since the content is mostly heavy and sometimes dark, I approach it in a light way –> so as how humour is formed.

Updated drawings here –>

Week 15th – 21st April

This week, I wrote a brief plan on ways to reach a wider audience. It includes a list of names/creators/studios/non-profit groups to message soon. I also started a new Instagram account to present to others.


Current to-do:

  1. Pitch
  2. Draw, scan, send

– List of agents, studios, people you want people to get involved in

– Draft the pitch

– Leaflats for neignbours to get out of uni circle

– Start a new instagram account

– Post an image a day

Can I take this outdoors?

Old spitalfields market —> workshop space (submission box?/post box)

How about the project lives outdoors for a weekend?

Submit the existing things (

Mental heath charities : MIND

Reference: If I could change the world

Week 2 – 8 March

This week I made the “I’m fine” project! The phrase “I’m fine” as a standard, boring and kind of passive response to the more general greeting “How are you?” seems to fit into the prompt of the project – share loneliness and save us from the boredom (?).

I created the submission window through my website. It is very word-y at the moment. I would love to make it a little more illustrated.

Submission link with details of how it is going to run
Submission window

To recap, the project is about sharing loneliness and sharing empathy by sharing stories of loneliness, social awkwardness, the feeling of isolation and joy. I ask for inspirations from contributers (source materials = stories) and reimagine the narrative in drawings. The drawing will be done on a postcard and eventually the contributers will all receive one of other people’s stories. In this way, we get to know a little about one another by exchanging our experiences in loneliness.

I want to circulate only a few stories + illustrations from a small group of people in each round. This is because I personally cannot handle too many in a short amount of time. Perhaps in the future, I can try to do a bigger group. It may results in a slower turnaround though.

I am happy with the results. I may add colours to them in the next round. I don’t think I will be able to print on cards yet. (My printer can’t handle thick cards + every drawing is one and only so I can’t save money from mass producing the cards from a print shop)

Currently I am re-writing a brief for the project. It started with a focus on feelings/emotions but it seems to be more about the methodology – how I get prompts from others. These will be quite different directions.

If the project ended up focusing on the feeling side, I am planning on adding content on its platform (website for example.) If this project does h.e.l.p. / comfort others, I may add resources in relations to tackling loneliness such as a reading list, good podcasts, charities that does work about it. Also, perhaps I will reach out to others (submissions, charities, art council, ual etc) to get it published so more people can reach this project and play.

If the project ended up focusing on methodology, I plan to find ways to expand the audience. The more source materials the better. Can this project move forward and be published somewhere other than Instagram? Maybe I will dm people about it.

Week 23 Feb – 1 Mar

This week’s big task is to figure out my line of enquiry. I was advised to think of some enquiry to structure and put all the little work together. It is basically the same question from last week, the week before, and the many weeks before. I had a hard time articulating what I do, not how I am doing it.

SO, it started from my current artist statement. “My work challenges the viewers to find the humour in those on-the-brink situations. It celebrates our embarrassing, near-pathetic moments and presents an alternative, humourous perspective.

I need something a bit more specific so I can work on it in the next two weeks. I need an AIM and a WHY


I explore the development of a visual language that engages with social awkwardness, embarrassment, feelings of inadequacy within intimacy.


I hope that, through presenting an open and honest investigation of these feelings, that are often hidden and internalised, we can mitigate how isolated we can feel in social settings.


Inspire pathos/empathy

◢ Projects

This post serves as a summary of my three triangulation projects.

◢ 1

The Many Ways of Being Rude

84 pages book, printed in A5 off white paper. It is a collection of drawings from 21 Oct – 11 Nov 2020.

◢ 2

Poems of You

An archive of my poems “You” on my website.

◢ 3

Instagram highlights “Lockdown 2.0”

37 Instagram stories (instead of posts) of drawings, questions and responses. Clicking the link will bring you to my profile. Then watch the story highlights named “Lockdown 2.0”.