This painting was for an art auction that was held on 6/17/2011 against Human Trafficking especially for the sexually exploited victims. My school friends were holding the event, so I got to put my hands on in details during the preparation time and share my inputs. Many of my CalArts friends came to support. The goal was to raise $5,000 and we raised $4,600. They were given to two organizations: She Dances and Zoe. About two days after the event, the director of She Dances personally expressed his gratitude and said the money we raised will be specifically used to help a girl from Honduras. I was thankful that our time, work, and talents helped a person's life to be changed. It was special event for myself as well because I have heart for human trafficking and it gave me an opportunity to use my talent for others.

This piece is almost my self-portrait. I like to put meanings and stories into my work. It took me awhile to bring out the images out from my head to an actual drawing. It went through several revisions.

At the time I painted this, I was struggling with the emotion I had. I felt like I was stranded in the life situation. In fact, I've always felt like that from young age. I pictured myself as a bird captured in a shell, wanting to break out, or a person wrapped around sticky heavy web, and can't get out of it. I wanted to be free. I'm sure everyone felt the same at some point in their lives. So I painted this image as a symbolism of my hope. One day, I'll be free, lifted up from the deep swamp. Not only after life but even in this life. My wish was that whoever buys my painting (my friend bought it) will look at my painting and get hope so that they can pick themselves up.

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