Art is a Lifestyle
For Jiemei Lin, art is a way of life and an opportunity to create special connections with others. It’s not a job; it’s a lifestyle. From a very young age, Jiemei has been drawing pictures and ingesting ideas from all around her. She grew up in Hangzhou, China—one of the oldest cities in the world. Jiemei calls it an “old and weird town”, full of all kinds of interesting Asian architecture.
Since this young artist didn’t have any siblings, she spent her time reading, making drawings, and imagining odd and surreal scenes in her mind. Though she was alone most of the time, Jiemei says she wasn’t lonely. Her artistry and imagination kept her company.
“I have been making drawings since I was young,” Jiemei said. “Drawing has always been a very personal and important thing for my life, like a nature need. When I was young, I wrote stories with illustrations. My language teacher, cousins, and friends were my audience. They followed my updates of the story in a very serious way.”
Ironically enough, her parents discouraged her from fantastic ideas like Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy and other “kid stuff”. They believed in science with all of their hearts and didn’t allow their daughter to watch TV.
In school, Jiemei was reassured of her talent in the arts. Unlike her mother who was a mathematician, Jiemei struggled in math and science but thrived in history, language, geography, and art.
“Fortunately, most of my schoolmates thought I was nerdy and creative at the same time,” Jiemei said. “I was a character with personality, not the boring one.” Continue reading