by Cindy Kang

I believe that the inspirations could come from anywhere – people you meet, stories you hear from the radio, or even a very random object that catches your attention on the street then could spark the inspiration. Ironically, I often have a hard time coming up with the drawing idea, and I end up staring at the blank canvas for a long time. Whenever this happens, I scroll through the photo album on my phone. All my memories are kept in the photos, and the precious moments I want to illustrate are always there. As I look through the old photos, I get story inspirations as well as the hints to color palette and composition.

One of my works, “Hope,” is inspired by the buildings and sunset pictures on my phone. Looking at the very top of the building and the sky that continues endlessly, I thought of freedom, hope, and peace, and the comfortable feeling that comes from these concepts. I played around with composition, combined the sunset colors from the photo, then added some of my imaginary balloons to convey the hopeful message I intended in the illustration.

Since the whole world is going through a tough time due to the global lockdown, this artwork was shared to send hopeful messages to the communities in response to COVID-19. Also, I shared this illustration on social media to commemorate the victims of the Sewol ferry sinking, marking six years since the tragedy. Yellow ribbons have become a symbol of hope, and I aimed to portray this message in my illustration through yellow-colored balloons.

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