Monday November 9, 2009: Why should this matter so much?

In my fashion illustration class we just handed in our midterm project that consisted of us being inspired by a historical decade. This being the post-Korea year, I naturally chose the Chosun Dynasty in South Korea. I am really proud of my collection, which looks to tradition Korean clothing mixed with the decorative elements of military from back then. I really like what I've done. But I was ready to leave my Korean inspiration and start something new.

Then we go our final project: stay in your historical period and look to architecture for your chief inspiration.

I think this sums up my relationship with being Korean. If it is up to be to go and seek out my Korean identity, if it is my conceived idea, then I am all for it and hit the ground running. When Korea, or my Korean identity, is pushed on me in a situation when I have to confront being Korean, then I am hostile and dismissive. I want my Korean identity and my pursuit of it to be entirely mine, organically coming from me and not any outside force.

I've long thought that if or when I find my "place" in the world, I will feel it inside. I'll know I belong there not because someone is telling me or because people say it is so, I'll belong because I'll feel it inside in some indescribable way. I know the dangers there are in hoping and thinking about what could be; I know that I'd idealized this process. But I have to hope, right? I have to believe that there is a place out there that is all mine and I'll feel joyous and comforted when I do find it.

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