fried rice

one of my favorite comfort foods in the world is the simplest egg/ham fried rice + ketchup! yum! new year is coming up. i still need to make something to send out as holiday e-greeting. i'm a lazy bum.
o, and on thurs nite, i delivered the last of paintings sold during my show (the black/gold arabesque series)


1st day of class!

today, i started officially, the 1st day of my chinese floral arrangement class w/my cousin, who is a master floralist. this is definitely something completely different than wht i've done b4 in painting, computer graphics, print or even my few pcs of sculptures and installations. i'm dealing w/ideas tht r about finding the natural beauty with meaning and style and combinations of both. it's got so much tradition, it's the origin of wht later became ikebana, traditional japanese flower arragement. i think for someone like me who isn't that interested in plants other than herb gardens or a few flowers, ths could b quite interesting. it'll also allow me to work in 3-d and give me diff perspective on things tht flow and about balance, the balance btwn stylized and free flow.


4 to 7 am

gosh, another nite without sleeping straight thru! this past weeks, i've been waking up at 4am, on the dot. and not able to return to sleep til 7 or 8. perhaps ther's something on my mind i've not been able to pinpoint? je ne sais pas la raison. il y a beaucoup de chose peut-etre.
perhaps making a list of what i hv to do today will put me to sleep? 7.22am, who is outside? it sounds wet like it's still raining. loosing my purse is really upsetting, cuz i had to cancel my cc & atm card here. today i will hv to go by the bank. shop for gifts. altho i did it for the states, i still didn't do for the family remaining in taiwan.



Got really inspired 2 paint ths w/copper gold as care w/Wht lines on top. Looks better in person.
After dancing all nite at luxy, i lost my fav sweat shirt jacket n little purse along w/everything tht matters in it. Had ths feeling i should've put.em in my pocket at 1 pt, again, lesson is 2 listen 2 my gut.


holidays approaching!

o O, x'mas is arriving soon, then new years... followed by chinese new year, etc. year's ending and everyone is taking flight. it makes me want to move too! even tho, i did promised myself i'd stay put for a bit, u kno, settle the dusts, hv some form of routine in my life. it's not as easy to do as it sounds! i just want to go! esp today, saying goodbye to dad who is headed back to OC for the holidays, going skiing, etc. no mosquitoes!
then i started looking at Palau! well, it's a thought.
why am i so flighty? i am not sure. maybe my soul is from a nomadic tribe long ago, tho i just want to hv a home, i can't seem to stay put! the irony of it all. things outside just attract me too mch? either tht or i become a recluse, stay in, never leaving my room.


very important question

this morning, as we sat ther eating breakfast, calvin (buji) asked a very interesting question.

if mommy was the one who gave birth to me, why do i have to have daddy's last name? why not mommy's?
i really don't kno why it is ths way exactly, not wanting to get into explaining what a patriarch society means, etc. so he instantly announces that he's going to chg his last name to LEE. then i added tht in some cultures, such as spain, a person carries both mom and dad's last names. he then immediately declares (trying to b fair to both mom & dad) then that he would do that, b both yang and lee.


the warlords (投名狀)Tau ming chong (2007)

tks to sandra's connections here, we got to go c the press preview of this upcoming film w/heavy-duty cast and great director. the story is set in mid-19th century china during the taipen (太平)rebellion time. this part of the chinese history i'm not very familiar with, not tht i am w/the rest, but because i wasn't ever interested in the art of ths dynasty, i don't kno much about its historical events either. this film is def an award-winning pc. ea/of the 3 main men, andy lau, jet li, and takeshi had their fair share of acting and carried it out their parts very well. i'm quite impressed with the film overall, happy to say.


my x'mas tree in taipei.

my x'mas tree in taiwan is up! i bought it yesterday at the B&Q (Home Depot equivalent of US) and set it up tonite w/my nephews, the only other thing we've purchased for the tree is the lights. so we used things we found around the house such as kid's toys, ribbons saved from gift wrappers, & cut-up plastic bottles as ornaments. originally, i thought the blue & green drink bottles plus the plastic beetles/ spiders would b the best. but turns out most of the beetles were left in taichung, so i hung other little toys. would b really awesome if it's just insects! lol!
i wonder if this is too hobo?


The End

Tmrw everything will hv 2 come down from the walk. 2day is last day of yoga too in ths space. Chg is the constant of life these days. It's a beautiful day out, gotta saveur the sun whenever he shows his face in ths town, taipei the gray! So slipping out on work, ciao!


lash obsessions.

this is a self-test of the product, after hearing such rave reviews of it. a product tht help grows eyelashes. this is great if it works, cuz i've no lashes on lower eye n very shor n few on the upper eye. as shown in fotos below, very sad.

and if i were to b successful, i'd hv more lashes, meaning, no more ill attempts at eyeliners. since i am no good when it comes to the application of make-ups. yipee! wish me luck!


one of the challenges of being an artist, i think, is knowing when to say "stop" it's finished. one can always look at the work-in-progress and have a different feeling from day to day about it. being so involved is tough because u r blinded by the work and being over self-critical.
and then,
ther's the attachment issue one developes with the work. ther's a dialogue with the work for so long tht t/attachment is quite strong. it's every part of ur "self" ur "essence" tht is poured into the work, inexplicable by words. so when it's on display on a wall or a certain space in public, we r exposing our self. u either r very shy about it, def nervous, wanting to pls ppl, and a dash of self-absorbed n self-centered-ness. u love it when someone says, i love ur work. ur nervous when they say, "hmmmm, i don't get it" u wanna cry when someone says, "i hate it, it isn't art" who is to say or judge what is or isn't art?
i've been really lucky to have family & friends who love and support my work. to b honest, art isn't really to b understood like theories, etc. i don't hv a particular statement except self-satisfying. i don't believe in distinction btwn high art or pop art or commercial art. if it touches something in u, whether ur like or dislike, it has done its job. indifference is the worst compliment.
this weekend, i'm faced with another challenge, is the forever parting of the work that has found new homes. i will b saying goodbye to'em all. hoping tht their new home will b just fine.
hmmm... gotta get back to my bread-n-butter commercial work. another challenge to make commercial work nice n beautiful and fulfilling its function to "sale"



Ths book i enjoy very much, i can feel as if i'm also reading lots of info n learning a bit...adding 2 my bits n pcs of junk knowledge.

On the train

Headed 2 junan 2 hang w/shan and anthony n frnds, sitting next 2 a local girl who kept taking foto of herself. When i was able 2 c her profile, i saw the longest eyelash extensions ever done! Maybe tht's y she couldn't stop taking her self portraits.


nov 22, turkey day

1st off, i wanted to wish happy thanksgiving to everyone. then i just wanted to say, this has been very strange year, i didn't feel the holiday coming upon me at all this year. i kno being away makes a big difference, but this year esp since i was not prepared for it at all and didn't make the big family dinner like i used to.


Ths is a joke?

When does cute become... Un-cute? this is it, when hello kitty takes over a whole gate at the terminal 2 of taiwan's main international airport.


places to go & places to eat

taiwan, when visitors come, wher do u take'em? not much to do in taipei except... eat, drink & play, lots of play. well, come to think of it, that makes up for all the things to do. too many places to go eat at that u don't have enough time for anything else. well, and lots of places outside of taipei to do things and to c and more eating.
today, we will go to jiufen via train towards daxi. in this book, ther is a suggested route that is very interesting. opposite of the typical tourists.



Clear blue sky! Perfect weather, sun is out, dry agr, slight breeze! Enjoy the beautiful rare day in taipei.



As i'm standing here waiting 4 my luggage 2 arrive, i'm wondering about wht 2 do next. Ths has been quite a busy travelling yr. Still, where do i belong? Still no luggage. Hopefully it isn't lost as i felt.



o scary!

it is today!!!!
my show... spent last nite hanging them up. today will b food preps.
my frnds help me write my little statement...
Arabesque is the anti-square, the non-Cartesian, the irrational, the unpredictable. It has no edges, no corners, like a stream of water, it encompasses everything, it surpasses all obstacles. Feminine in its shape, gentle in its touch, its warm and ensuring curves are no less a constant source of 
surprises! Where will the curliness lead you? To the irrational, the world of imagination, to the 
non-Cartesian, the world of dreams. This exhibition is no more but a contemplation and reflection of the self, of the aritist, Sophie.
阿拉伯式花紋與正方形是相對比,他是不理性的,不規則的,無法預期的.他沒有邊,沒有轉角,譬如一道流水一般,他繞過一切的物品,他穿過所有的阻礙.他的形狀是女性的,他的觸摸是溫柔的,他溫暖的曲線是充滿了驚奇的.這些曲線會帶你到哪?帶你去那個不理性的幻想世界,到那麼不規則的夢境中. 這個展覽是只個畫家的自我思考與自我反射.Sophie 眼中的世界,Sophie 眼中的自己
tks to everyone for their support & help. wish me luck...btw is ther someone i can hire to stand in as me?


today: Oirase Gorge, Japan

after taking the hi-speed rail from sendai (仙台), japan, we arrived an hour further north in morioka (盛岡市). here the maples have turned to just the right shade of bright oranges, yellows & reds with the evergreens off-setting the reds. such beauty lining the highway was we drove to Hirosaki Castle (弘前城).

this town is also famous for its apples. wow, such amazing apples! yellows & reds. we wnt apple picking too. here it's quite different than the states. u don't c any tossed apples on the grounds. u get a bag & can ea/pick 5 apples in total of eating or take away.
ok will upload more fotos later on. the hot springs every morning & nite makes me sleepy.
gonna go grab another milk n go draw.


sad scroll...

the chinese scroll frame shop ruined my scroll drawing! :-(
so sad, it's all bleeding badly, like my blurred vision! it's nearly 7ft of blurred vision. i can't show this one! boohooooooooo!


sendai, japan

next stop (as substitute for my dad) i'm on a trip to sendai, japan, just north of tokyo. we'll c. i'm a bit nervous about the various unfinished errands for my show on next sat. worried cuz i'm not back til nov 1, show's on 3rd...
well, wish me luck. almost time to board the flight.


fire in so-cal

it isn't me! i only stopped in southern cal for a few days & i left everything as is. natural disasters r not my forte!



well, this is my exhibit's invitation, front side & below is back. the front is 4-up, so actually 4 cards, but placed together makes a nice image on it's own, like a little puzzle. the artwork itself is being framed right now for the show. so many things to prep for and decide besides the framing! hv to decide how much booze & wht booze & munchies to get for the show. how to price my work. how to hang it. how many invites to print. how to write it in both english & chinese (i get a lot of help on this one). i believe the toughest is parting w/them. becuz once it's sold, it's out n gone. no longer mine. maybe i don't want to sell'em? not sure what to do on ths one.

this is the single card view.

this is the back with all the info in both english & chinese. gotta b lingual.

not again!

damn! i meant to buy coke zero, been wanting to try how it taste for myself. instead, i'm staring at the buttons of the vending machine, B7, n thinking i'm pushing B7, n i got B6! i'm loosing it. this is happening way to often to me, picking up the wrong things to buy.


flying out

this is my plane from LAX to TPE via tokyo. this leg is the longest.
all the plans my family has is changing & shifting since dad lost his taiwnese passport (finding out right b4 u fly isn't very good) so mom isn't very happy for she's worried n packed for nearly a week, planning on wht to wear, golf, etc. packing another case for me to take for taiwan, etc... the sleepless week! now she's pissed.
well, dad is the main story of our conf. so, it'll b strange if he can't make it.
so then what's going to happen to our 2 full color pages in the book dedicated to this press conf?
then, when will they return? will mom n i b going to this other japan trip together?


burning man decom

last nite, instead of going dancing & clubbing, mark/maggie & i wnt to the faux octoberfest here in huntington beach (wht a rip off) and to the burning man decom after in the industrial spaces in downtown LA. it was near the end of the 2 day/nite festival so we only got to walk around a bit n listen to some music & watch ppl perform fire dance & such.



Damn!! Ths fone looses the blog i'm writing if i answer incoming call! Anygoo, after sitting extra 2 hrs on runway at jfk, due 2 runway jam, it's really annoying to finally arrive here to find the gate occupied n we hv 2 wait a bit longer sitting here. 5 hr flt turning into 9.+ 2 more to get luggage n ride home! Shiva!

Bye bye bye

Leaving 4 jfk in a cab now. Goodbye 2 all my dear friends here. Def will miss the everyday things we do. Tks 4 lending me ur sofa n lovely company. Missing nyc as i'm about 2 leave. Until the next time.


M2 limited stop bus

Ther's another french bistro on the upper east side, henry. It's called Orsay, just cross from starwhich cafe. As i ride this bus, reminded of so many sights n places, n tht i sh'd home shopping. This line is perfect 4 dave if u want 2 avoid time square messy traffic on M104. And ths foto is of hotel name tht's hard 2 read.


There r my apples from maskers orchard. All mixed up but very yummy, too bad won't b keeping them. This year the summer n fall has been reversed 4 me. Summer as fall in france n summer in fall here in nyc. Wonder about cali.



very sleepy. wnt to bed at 3 & woke up at 5.30. took the local plane from liberia to san jose w/a stop over to pick up more passengers. it's like a little bus! arrive in san jose too early, now just waiting around, ssssssssssooooooooooooooooooooooo very very sleepy.


zip line

in another 3 hours, i'll b in a van, riding to liberia airport, then san jose, atlanta, nyc. (happy to b getting away from mosquitos but sad to b leaving beautiful place)

well, the highest hi-lite of ths trip are def the beach (beautiful warm waters) and the zip line (canopy tour). my dad came w/me cuz he didn't want to let me go all alone (tho secretly, i kno he's curious too) and mommy came cuz she couldn't nap & didn't wanna stick around hotel room all afternoon. it's low season here, so it's practically private tour (ok, it is)

since monkey dad & monkey me both r really into it, we've convinced mom to at least try one line, n we got one of the nice guides to take care of mom. she was really scared of the possible dangers. at our insistence tho, she did try it once n learnt it to b ok w/a guide. she thought she might get to quit by the sixth line, but b4 u kno it, she's at the finish line w/us, 20 lines later!
so amazing & fun!
let's do it again!!
btw, i set the date for my show... now tht's scarrier than anything else i'm doing in my life.

hiking in the rain

rainy season in costa rica. we took a guided tour (remember, i'm w/my parents & frnds, everything is guided) to leave the complex of four seasons here near liberia. the complex itself is far away from everything and secluded. so, we wnt on a hike thru a tour company. very muddy cuz of the rain.
this thing is in the racoon family, it's a male (which meant unless it's mating season, he's not allowed in the herd of the rest of females & babies)

isn't he rather cute?



Just met some of mom n dad's friends. Spring n May, but it is Autumn right now!


I'm here in atlanta, transiting to san jose, costa rica. Just woke up in time 2 c sunrise n pass out again. Only the children look wide awake at ths hr. My parents should b in the same terminal now awaiting their flt to liberia. How surprised view wd b 2 c me!


costa rica is next on the agenda

well, i'm flying to costa rica next thurs (sept 27-oct 2) to meet my parents and their frnds. i'll prob b the only daughter around. i don't care, cuz i get to c my parents and travel to somewhere i've not been and wanted to go. i don't even care if i hv to lug my laptop and work late into the nites to finish my current project for my sister's company. i don't mind taking the cheaper flt & driving in a private car for 5 hrs to get to liberia, from san jose, is okay, i will prob c some sights n sleep. i can't wait to c the stars at nite while at the hotspring.
and i my dad can answer some questions i've got regarding the designs and maybe i will even b able to draw a bit? too ambitious? maybe i should lug those.
gotta borrow a smaller suitcase (22" carry on size would b good.)

another travel gaget

cocoon travel sheets, comes in all materials and shapes. i love it. cuz when u'r travelling somewhat budget and lux at the same time, it's nice to kno tht ur sheets r ur own. u can trust it to b bug-free, germ-free and it carries ur own scent. it's washable n light wt + compact. u can even use it on long haul flts and save the airline & the world another sheet of plastic bag wrappings while making sure u're wrapped in ur own shell and it's warm.

Casa mono

ths is called razor clams


This is how i feel too.


O it's raining right now. didn't c that coming at all! gotta change plans for the day... maybe i'll just hang out n watch tv? tht'd b nice too. so lazy about moving myself once i settled in. but it'll b nice to hang w/ the cats and actually watch tv?
anyways, tht's for in a bit, wanna chat about last nite, and various updates, things happening...etc.
it's friday nite and i'm wondering, what's to do? and henry called to say he's nearby, want a drink? how about chikalicious? so, finally made it to chikalicious. tonite is the nite when dinner goes backwards/forward. desserts first then main food.
no lines! cuz it's when most ppl r still at drinks or starting dinner... so, i thought maybe it was more relaxed and u get to converse w/chika while she worked. but she's soooooooo busy putting together things & she's shy tht it was a bit less like that. she has a big big smile, very shy, very sweet. the process of her making all the light yummy desserts were amazing. ther's a really nice & lite grape jelly w/green tea sorbet and after ther were petite fours (mais il y a trois chaque'un!, c'est pas four) i loved my cream sherry pairing w/my fig cake w/anglaise sauce, i rarely drink this thing, yum.

then we walked around to find this chicken place, recently opened (5-6 months, young like sophie) they served either real chicken or vegetarian chicken. interesting. i was full, tho i did lust after henry's fried chicken, i ordered moonshine stew (has corn, okra & chicken, really like the guy's grandma's receipe) & tasted henry's chicken. only got a foto of the aftermath of our eating/sharing. boy if i keep this up here, eating so much food everyday, i will b a chubby girl who has to watch wht she eats.

this is their postcard, very interestingly done.
i kept getting these emails of great djs coming to LA for Monster massive at the holloween weekend. AVB is playing, i luv him live. he goes on and on and on unlike the other big time djs out ther and u can just dance forever! that's what i really missed out on this year.
then i start thinking of ppl home in cali. things & events i missed out on. danilelle got married in the summer & i can't make it, now i can't make her baby shower either :-(, john is moving north to b w/his new g/f, phil is moving to singapore ths coming new year. nine got married & i missed the wedding. sophie was born and i couldn't make it til much later to c her. teddy was born & i was away. he barely knos who i am. things happening and i'm not there, but then, i'm here, so it's where i should enjoy ea/day as i am n where i am. sorry everyone for missing ur important days.
however, the most important thing is, i'm learning new things all the time. at the wu's. i learnt tht the leftovers can b creatively made into new and other yummy things. like leftover 4grain rice from yesterday was blended w/almond butter & other nuts to make rice milk.



turns out the name, Helevtica, was latin origin of the swiss, Helvetia. since the typeface was updated into modern design by the swiss...hence. this is a new info i learnt at the film Helvetica (tht i dozed off on, i was tired)
i must say, i love this typeface a lot, but because the Cap R always bothered me, so my passion is w/Avenir (related to Futura, avenir means "future" in french)
as a challenge for myself tho, it might b good to design w/Helvetica for a while? just a thought. maybe not...

-------going back towards the morning, wnt to the park for a quick stroll w/yuki wu (my aunt's name, actually, we are related thru my aunt marrying into her side of the family somewhere) and did yoga in the park. she asked, why do ppl not excercise in the park? in asia, our parks hv dingy trees and lots of concrete, not very pleasant, but ppl just love excercising ther; here, the parks have such amazing trees, etc and yet, only a handful is ther, sitting or ppl watching. i dunno how to answer tht one. anyone?
and we talked about (me, yuki, her hubby) my future w/her & gobo. i said yes. i'm totally interested, tho i wonder wht's it going to b like and when does everything start?
at dinner 2nite, matthew predicted tht it'll b block island time b4 i actually get back here. i'm not sure. it's all so ify that he could b right. yuki wants me to "just do it" but her husband and sons r slower and thorough, so we shall c.


nyc, another list

well, i came across this book at the wu's, written by the wife of a taiwanese embassador (sort of) these are her picks of top 70 places to b eating in nyc...
her book's english title is :Eat Big Apple

1. burger joint at Le Parker Meridien
2. chikalicious (tried 3 times to go, but way too small & line way too long)
3. chumley's
4. db bistro moderne
5. katz's (will b closed for 2 yrs while they build a high rise condo there)*
6. norma's
7. rice to riches
8. serendipity 3 (seen in One fine day, movie)*
9. tomoe sushi*

10. 5 Ninth
11. asia de cuba
12. balthazar*
13. kittichai
14. matsuri
15. morimoto
16. spice market
17. vento trattoria

18. cafe gray
19. four seasons
20. gotham bar & grill*
21. keens steakhouse
22. le bernardin
23. nobu
24. peter luger steak house
25. sparks steak house

26. asiate
27. aureole
28. craft
29. cru
30. limpero
31. petrossian
32. wallsé

33. bouley
34. daniel
35. jean georges
36. masa
37. megu
38. per se

[6] vegetarian/ raw
39. gobo*
40. hanGawi*
41. pure food & wine

[7] sex & the city joints:
42. cipriani downtown
43. city bakery*
44. eleven madison park
45. florent
46. magnolia bakery*
47. sushi samba*
48. tao
49. woo la oak

[8] small places:
50. casa mono*
51. jack's luxury oyster bar
52. jewel bako
53. pommes frites*

[9] special?
54. cafe habana
55. le pain quotidien
56. sarabeth's
57. yakitori totto

[10] tea/coffee break:
58. alices tea cup
59. cafe lalo*
60. franchia
61. t salon & t emporium*
62. tea & symphony*

[11] all-star
63. blue water grill*
64. churrascaria plataforma*
65. mesa grill*
66. oyster bar
67. pastis
68. rosa mexicano*
69. union square cafe*
70. neo


jim shaw and 2nd sat in nyc

ths morning, i woke up on d&s's sofa looking out to c gray sky. eugene's not feeling well, and i wondered, if henry is feeling better today? will anyone b up for going to PS1 to c Jim Shaw's installation? it is gray outside and it made me want to stay in and sleep more. i wondered what time d&s r returning from long island? i'll sleep more n clean up a little later.
woke up again and it's nearly 10.30am! i c the sun fighting its way thru the clouds. yippee! sunshiny day for sun shiny girl. my moods r dependent on sun i guess. i slowly got everything together. tidied up and thought maybe i'd go out and draw a bit. i've not done very good work since coming to nyc. maybe it's because i'm constantly distracted by work and things to c. my stomach grawled. ok i need to eat and pick up my sketchbook from matthew's apt. yeh, he's up for lunch, and he's right about Edgar being nicer than Cafe Lalo. i stayed on to draw in my book a bit b4 meeting up w/henry to go PS1.

it is a great show, jim shaw's work. but we were hounded by the security team there, pouncing on us for every little thing we do. following us everywhere as if we were going to do something awful ther. wht is going on? what happened to the original concept of PS1 being a more hip modern "non-museum" museum? damn, i am disappointed by how things r run there.
peter young is another artist on show ther tht i liked the work of.

we walked around henry's home area a bit, chatting, talking about my possiblities here in nyc. was great to hv some1 to talk to about these things. i appreciate all my frnds who can help me c clearly thru choices, possibilities, confusions. it's better than thinking by myself. another point of view to clarify or confuse more. either way helps more than alone.

afterwards, henry n i convinced m to come out to queens to eat at this famous thai place. we even bought a wine for it only to find it closed for vacation :-( so under the bridge, at the tamales stand, the guy recommended a peruvian resto, INCA to us, it turned out to b really yummy. we over-stuffed ourselves. but i was sooooooo cold, i ate a lot.
during dinner, we were chatting about various things and talking about my family. and tony called to ask if i wanted to go w/mom & dad to costa rica. and henry was just asking me about how i was drawn out to places, etc... n here comes a call to call me away, LOL! i've never been and always wanted to go, here's an oppertunity to go, so i took it. meet my parents & their frnds ther. i don't mind being all alone ther w/out my siblings. i get to c a new place :-)
really beat now, going to sleep on matthew's sofa tonite, too late to move to the wu's. tmrw.
ther's always tmrw for something else.


using pumpkin seeds

this dish aunt wu created for her restaurant is a pate, quite similar to like any liver pate we normally eat, except it's created from pumpkin seeds and a few slices of chinese herb. it's so interested, the flavors n tastes great.