Gyuli


Never thought I'll see her again- actually, she is one of the few that I have known for almost ten years now. Same church, same Tulsa, I always gave her rides back and forth to church and home with her brother. I think it's very interesting and strange, when you spend much time with someone even without too much talking, there is still that connection that is created between two people. I think between Gyuli and I we have that. And it never goes away. That is the magic and merit of time. I bet I was one of the unnie for her she talked the most in the time back then for her, nevertheless, there is that bonding that we have spent in my car.


It wasn't until recently I realized we share so much common of being a young female Korean living in Tulsa, Oklahoma- moved to States not by our choice. But adjusted and found an interesting identity that is still being found. And that was enough to decide to ask her to be part of my collection. Plus, she looks so much mature and her face has become more feminine and beautiful.


규리


어느새 훌쩍 커버린 규리. 정말 오래, 거의 10년동안 안 몇 안되는 사람중 하나다. 우리는 많이 대화하지도, 함께 많은 시간을 따로 보낸것도 아니지만, 교회와 집 사이 라이드를 많이 해주던 기억이 난다. 그리고 그 때 그저 같은 공간에 함께 있던 시간이 이상하게 서로가 서로를 보면 편안하게 만들어주는것 같다. 규리 규석 남매는 원래 말이 없는 편이지만, 그래서 그런지 나를 편하게 해준다. 굳이 말하지 않아도 느껴지는 연대감같은걸 이들에게서 느낀달까. 가끔은, 말보다 침묵이, 임재가 더 많은것을 말하는것 같기도 하다. 그래서 그런지 규리를 스타일링하는건 전혀 어렵지 않았고, 어떤 질문을 인터뷰에 물어볼지도 고민하지 않아도 되었던것같다.

I think the color I would see myself in would be like a dark sage green. Not only is it a favorite color of mine, but it’s a calm and mellow color which I would like to think that I have those characteristics in myself. I specifically say dark because even though I think I’m chill and mellow, there are parts of me that are dark like my flaws and pain that I carry within me.

Unlike others, I don’t think I had a rough time living with two different cultures as a child but it did get difficult when I actually moved to Korea almost four years ago. By that time, I considered OK as my home. I was leaving my friends and leaving the American culture I was more comfortable with. When I was in Korea, I struggled to “feel” like a Korean. I thought I had to “be” more Korean since I live in the country now but it was hard to do that. The States felt more like a home to me and I really struggled to feel like either an American or Korean. Korea only started to feel like home about 2 months before I moved back to OK and that was also difficult to deal with. I felt a little bitter to be leaving my home again and moving to place that would feel familiar but not home anymore. I still think I’m more American ultimately, my identity is in Christ so I try not to focus on it too much. 

To be honest, I look at the mirror and instantly spot the flaws. They may not be prominent from other people’s perspective, but when you see them couple of times a day, that’s all that you see like my incredibly dark under eye circles, small eyes, pale lips, and the occasional acne. Fortunately, I’ve kind of gotten used to it and in fact, it doesn’t really bother me anymore. Sure I look dead in the morning but it’s fine if other people see me with a naked face because that’s what I naturally look like. 

But what bothers me is on those days when I’m really anxious and sad and I just see a really sad and tired expression. I suffer from anxiety on a daily basis and it’s mentally and physically exhausting. So, when I see my tired expression, it upsets me because I want to be joyful and smile but sometimes I just don’t have the energy to do that.

The dark sage green


규리만의 그 젊지만 어둑어둑한 그 말로 표현할 수 없는 느낌을 내고싶었는데 본인의 가장 좋아하는 어두운 녹색/초록색이 참 찰떡이라고 생각이 들었다. 본인은 어떻게 생각할지 모르겠지만, 규리 규석 남매가 풍기는 특유의 외로움이라고나 할까, 고독이 있다. 나는 그것을 존중하고, 매력처럼 느껴진다고 해야할까. 굳이 친한척, 밝은척, 하지 않는, 덤덤한 외로움이 있다. 좀 더 나이가 어렸을때에는 그것이 불안정해 보이는 모습이 없지않아 있었지만, 벌써 둘다 성인이 되고 나서 보니 그들을 지탱해주는 단단한 반석의 일부가 아니었나 싶다.

The hand is Gyuseok's, her brother's. I know the relationship between them is something a bit more special than I have seen between other brother and a younger sister. Gyuseok is like a father, friend, a protector to her, and I thought it would be meaningful to have his part of body to be her part of portrait. Being an only child, I do not know how it feels to have a sibling, closer than parents. But from what I have seen, it is interesting, intimate-and, omnipresent. I see more positive sides of it and I wanted to capture it somehow.

I don’t quite know what to expect in a photoshoot. I’ve only ever done one and it wasn’t that great. Taking pictures is not comfortable for me and I get tense so my smile always looks weird and I just don’t feel confident. I guess I just want it to be a time of having fun and being as comfortable as possible. I think it will be a time of creativity and expression so I’m looking forward to it. I hope that after this, I’ll feel more better about taking photos of myself.