I hope you have all been well!
I'm so happy to finally announce that we have started shipping out rewards!!! Thank you so so so much for your continued patience - no one has sent me an angry email about it yet haha.
As many of you have noticed, a good number of you received tracking numbers for your rewards this past weekend. Be on the lookout for those this coming week!
I will be shipping non-US orders this weekend. All non-US orders require phone numbers so please make sure to go back in and add those to your mailing info.
Additionally, a good number of people have not responded yet to the survey asking for their mailing address. Please do so asap as I am planning on sending out the second batch this weekend. If you known anyone that has forgotten that they contributed to this project, please remind them that shipping has finally started and that they need to send me their mailing address.
If you need to make changes to your mailing address please do so ASAP. If you are unable to change the address in your survey, just message me directly.
Lastly, please send in photos of how you choose to display the prints! I'm so curious how differently everyone will do it.
I will continue to keep you updated. Thank you so much again!
Well, I have been back safe and sound in the States for about 2 months now. Boy, was jet lag a doozy this time! I apologize for the delay and lack of communication - I have been settling in and job hunting. But manager and I are getting ready to start on the last leg of this project! My sample prints arrived last week and they look great.
My goal is to have the prints in your hands by the end of August/beginning of September at the latest. As the prints won't be too heavy or bulky, shipping should be relatively speedy.
Also, my exhibit night went off without a hitch and it was a really awesome night of food, community, and paintings. (A LOT of translating on my part, though - whew!) I will put up pictures with my next update. Also, I am showing one of my paintings at an exhibit here in Los Angeles next week! Here's the exhibit info if you're interested in seeing it in person: https://www.facebook.com/events/471992149838689/?ti=as
I apologize again for the delay and thank you again for your patience and support - I can't wait for you to see the prints! :D
I now have 4 days left in Seoul. Wow!
I have two paintings left that I'm working frantically on. I think I'll be ok. ^__^
But most importantly... I am going to have an exhibit/celebration party this coming week!
If you're in the area, please stop by! ^^ There will snack foods from a North Korean restaurant, some small raffle prizes, and lots of wonderful people to meet and talk to. (And, of course, the art!)
If you need directions in Korean, just send me a message! :)
I can't wait to show you guys pictures from the event. I have no idea how many people will show up but it's going to be a good night, nonetheless!
And wow, so much has happened since then!
I had pretty lofty expectations for the start of this project before I touched down in Seoul in February. Looking back, I thought it would be pretty straightforward - wham, bam, paint, exhibit, fly back home! I was right in a few aspects, but so wrong on so many other aspects.
One thing I am really learning with this project is that forming connections and then pursuing them can take a long time. (All things considered, I'm sure that in most instances making things happen with connections takes even longer than what I am experiencing. I can't imagine how long of a process it is for entrepreneurs!) Like I said, I expected to get interviews with North Koreans with my already-existing network within a week or two of landing in South Korea and get painting asap. But that was actually not the case - I spent the month of February meeting different people and getting more familiar with some various organizations and groups that focus on North Korean assistance.
I'll admit there was some anxiety towards the end of February and I wasn't able to arrange a single interview yet. But miraculously, the effort and investment into deepening relationships and being patient paid off and I completed my first interview last week! It feels amazing to be painting this week. :) I have reformulated my timeline for the actual painting process - I had originally budgeted 2-2.5 weeks per painting but I have shortened that to 1 week. (I think that is totally reasonable, especially given that I can work on them for at least 4-5 hours daily.) I am still on track for my timeline for the entire project overall!
I am so excited to give you a peek at the current set of paintings I'm working on. I had originally planned for 1 painting per person but with my first subject, only about halfway into her story I started getting inundated with imagery and I knew that I would have to do two for her. She is an amazing lady and I am so fortunate to have met her. For some reason, the artists I am most influenced by for her paintings are Anselm Kiefer for the before and Frida Kahlo for the after...
Seoul is pretty great (except the air pollution! oh boy...). I feel quite comfortable this time around and I'm having a great time just observing the speed of life here and the people. I'm meeting such wonderful people doing incredible things here and I know many of them will be people I keep in touch with. I know I will leave here with potential for more opportunities in the future.
I've also decided that it might be nice to have some video footage as well so I'm starting to record short vlogs! If you have some time, check out my first video here. :)
Thanks again for your support. It's been incredible so far and I am committed to finishing through this project even more incredibly-ly! (Ha.)
**NOTICE** People have been contacting me that they'd like to contribute to this project even though the funding period is closed. That is ABSOLUTELY still possible but we have to take it off Kickstarter to a third party, like PayPal, Google Wallet, Venmo, any of the other payment platforms also! Just message me to make this happen and I can add you guys to the list of rewards you fund! WOO HOO!!!!