Friday, December 24, 2010

Happy Holidays & New Year <( O , O )>

Please Keep Warm

Saturday, December 11, 2010

My Interview on Ms. Magazine Blog!

My interview on Ms. Magazine Blog!
If you want to read about my rambles, please do click this link. :D
Ms. Magazine is AWESOME!
Thank you Kyle for the wonderful questions and introduction. It was a lot of fun.

And... Farewell, everybody for the rest of the year! I am going to Brampton to help out at my parents' store in Bramalea City Centre mall. Yup, I'll be disappearing into the holiday abyss. I'd really like to have a few days off, please... but what can I do. Gotta stay afloat and I have youth to burn!

As always, Master's study is pain in the a*s. Seriously, I cannot believe I worked so hard for no visible result whatsoever. It is another proof that art masters is just waste of air; other disciplines work to make the world the better place. I should've gone to a med school or something.

Sorry for ranting again. I will post my works in retrospect. Photos from Memories of Enemies and Krampusnacht.
Have a wonderful holidays everyone!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Girl in the Attic in the Current Issue of Broken Pencil

My comic "Girl in the Attic" is in the current issue of Broken Pencil. The comic is actually the episode 1 of 3 part book, "Three Girls". You can see the excerpt in my website.

I also received a TOFU award for co-hosting podcasts at Toronto Vegetarian Association. Look at the cute hand-made trophy! Thank you TVA, I miss you a lot.

As always... I am busy with school, hence the 5am blog posting (I haven't gone to bed yet). I'm in the amidst of thesis writing frenzy, writing solid 8 hours a day for past two weeks. Let me tell you, among many things, I really suck at writing. Everybody, please wish me luck.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Krampusnacht 2010 at Resistor Gallery

Gruss Von Krampus!

I was invited to participate for Krampusnacht 2010 at Resistor Gallery by my wonderful friend (and an awesome illustrator) Steve Wilson. I've never heard of this 'krampus' until that very moment. How come I never heard of this?!  I feel cheated out of something too good to be true. I think I would've liked Holiday seasons more if I knew of this monster. Krampus is a pagan evil monster, who is a counter part of Santa Claus. He punishes bad children. SO AWESOME!!! Krampus is still celebrated in Austria, Czech, and Germany. They get an awesome furry monster, and we get a fat man in red suit? Life is just not fair.

Oh there were many plans for this show, there were. Alas, I've been too busy with school and making moooooney. I was going to make a painting along with the furry head above, but just didn't have time to make paintings. You'd think doing art Master's would let me make more art. Reality is always punch in the face.

Come look at my furry mask. If you are busy, no worries, I will post photos.
Here is the information on the show:

• Show runs Monday-Friday 10am - 5pm until January 10, 2011, Resistor Gallery •
284 College Street 2nd Floor, Toronto (Map)

Now back to my thesis writing.... *sigh*

Oh by the way, I made slippers to use in my school studio with leftover faux fur:

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

...And the Winners Are

Thank you everybody who participated in the Toronto Mayoral Election prize draw.
There were only four entrance and there were 6 prizes. So I decided to give them 2 prizes each. I let them choose what they want in the order of participation and more ;)

The winners are:
Colleen - prize 6 and 1
Steve - prize 6 and 5
Daniel - prize 3 and 4
Jinsung - prize 2 and a pack of stickers

Oh lordy, I've been very very busy. Of many projects I'm working on, I'm working on a game called 'Infection' with my friend Louie. If you are curious and have PC, try it out. We have released beta version on our development site. The graphics are still rough but basic mechanics are there.

The title page of the game:

And... here is the background graphic I just finished (not included in the beta version):

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Vote to Win! Toronto Election

Vote for Toronto Mayoral Election tomorrow!

It is very simple to enter this contest. Take a photo in front of the election booth, line-up, or whatever. Any proof that you've voted. And either tweet/email/facebook me the photo. 6 lucky people will win Hyein goodies! I don't know many people, so YOU have a very good chance of winning. 

My twitter: @HyeinPain
Facebook: Hyein Lee

Here are the Prizes.

It is a magic mug cup. Red is my favourite colour. I only made 2 red magic mugs. One for you, one for me. When you pour hot water, my art appears. They are In Bruge I and In Bruge II pieces I've done inspired by my Bruge trip last year.

Collection of my best selling prints. Have all 3! Clockwise, I Cried a River Over You, Cupcake Girl and Pieces of the Sun. They are 8.5X11" high quality prints.

Collection of my best selling prints. Have all 3! Clockwise, In Bruges I, Jellyfish Wrangler and Mr. Furry Pants. They are 8.5X11" high quality prints.

Have 3 of my comics. They are heartfelt stories of tragedy and humor. Excerpt from Three Girls (my experience growing up in 80s South Korea) comic is featured in the current issue of Broken Pencil. From Left, Three Girls, Frequently Asked Questions about Threesome and Bryan.

I'll draw you something on this paper. Original drawing on a very nice paper. You can even request me something if you'd like.

Win a hand silk screened print by Hyein! Four colour, hand pulled print on a very nice paper with raw edges. 11X14". It is titled Even When Strawberries Are Falling From Skies, We Are Sad. Read my complete story about this piece here. This is a very limited edition, I think I made 5 copies or less (and I'm keeping the most). I won't be screen printing for a long time, so enter the draw!

The winners will be announced at the end of the week. Since the winners all live in Toronto, please pick up the prizes in person :)

Why am I doing this? I'm in a total fear of a certain crazy person becoming a lawyer of my beloved city. I don't want Toronto to be in the world news for a crazy mayor again (remember Mel Lastman's cannibal joke?). I want to live a quiet life and my city out of global news. I'd ideally like you to vote Joe Pantalone, but this is a democratic society. It's none of my business whom you vote for. Just don't tell me if you voted for Ford, I don't want to know.

Sorry for the Toronto-central post today. Another apologies for crappy photographs. It's late at night, and I'm very tired from Canzine today. Thanks everyone who visited my table at Canzine today, by the way.

Come on, you don't need a dirty immigrant like myself to beg you to vote, do you? Thank you all in advance for being awesome citizens. We can make a difference. Please vote.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Naughty or Nice

 I got to work with the amazing people at Canadian Family again. I had so much fun drawing angry kids. The illustrations were used for a center fold-like flow chart. Along with the serious, good advice, there was a splash of humour.
They were kind enough to add me to the contributor's page!
Thank you Colleen. :D

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Memories of Enemies Opens Tomorrow

A sneak peak! This piece is giant at 30"X40". Okay, all my pieces are giant for this show.
I am having a show with some of my talented and awesome friends: Vicki, Britt, Roben, Ilichna, Alej, Selena and Franzisca. I am so very excited about the show. I also love the venue, it is a huge old fashioned beer factory made out of bricks! That building makes me think of Dickens novel. The opening is tomorrow, please come by if you are free.  Oh I have 3 new giant pieces for this show. Here is the event info:

Opening Night is Wednesday October 6, 2010 
from 7-11pm
Steam Whistle Brewery, The Roundhouse, 255 Bremner Blvd., Toronto. 

Another sneak preview (I will post the full image after the opening tomorrow. This piece is also giant at 43"X60")

And here is our poster. You might have seen these around town. Roben painted this amazing munkey. :)

It had been an absolute chaos past month; painting everyday and dealing with school bureaucracy. And again, not sleeping for 3 days... On top of this show deadlines, I had to prepare for a presentation and plan a workshop. At the end of the day yesterday, I started to hallucinate. I actually saw a guy walking through a wall!! So amazing. I recommend sleep deprivation to anybody, any loving family. The talk I gave at OCADU was pretty bad, I kept forgetting what to say, so I stopped in mid-sentences a lot. I taught 8 hour intense AfterEffects workshop on Sunday. Thankfully, despite of the hectic course schedule, it went very well.

Anyways, I had a good rest today, and not quite ready for more crazy schedule, but I got to do what I got to do. Say hello to me at the show! If you cannot make it to the opening, the show is on until October 31st. I'm so excited...

Monday, September 13, 2010

Can You Stay Pure.

 I really shouldn't be doing a blog post (in the middle of the horrors of grad school. I should be writing papers). But it has been long enough since these works had been in display, so I shouldn't wait any longer either. These works are huge. Definitely taller than I. Maybe you've seen them around town somewhere. I don't know where they are installed. If you ever walked by one, please do tell me. Here is the complete map of the project.

Sean Martindale, an idealistic colleague of my program stopped me on my way to a farmer's market on my pimpin' bike. He briefly told me about Toronto Street Advertising Takeover (TOSAT). "Can you have them done in two days?" I always wanted to tag along to his brilliant projects, so I said yes. He told me the dimensions and I didn't think much of it. Once I got to my studio, I realized... OH. 67.5" by 47" is taller than my height. I already lost a day exchanging appropriate info via email. I had one night to draw them. So there I was, alone in the school studio, desks put together to make room with a lot of Korean soap operas playing at the background. Not sleeping for art isn't anything new. I haven't drawn in this big scale since Sheridan College so it was therapeutic. I even got to see a couple being topless on their condo balcony. Win-win situation.
My art supplies look like garbage. And yes, some were actually garbage.

Being a cheap (I was educated at school to do this in Korea, actually) person that I am, I have a pencil extender to get the most out of that small stub of a pencil.

So what were these drawings for? Bunch of frustrated street artists decided to take over the advertising and substitute with art. Frustrated by our cityscape dominated by advertisement. Fight against capitalism? That sort of thing. Sean Martindale is one of a few people in my program I truly respect. He's ethics, theory and practice are consistent and he makes stunning art that makes you stop. I was his fan before I even met him when I noticed his poster plants. I was waiting for a light to change on Queen and Spadina on a gray day and noticed his poster plant. I was so jaded from illegal advertising (I didn't even know they were illegal until I heard Sean's talk) that covers the city like so many other Toronto people. Seeing the illegal advertising cut up to harbour a fragile green life-form was beautiful and moving. And made me think of... yeah, the nature's triumph even after we are long gone.

Poster plants weren't his only work. All of his works are almost equal in emotional impact. Google his name and you'll find out about his other amazing projects. So to be honest, I just wanted to participate in whatever he does. I cannot honestly say that I was purely angry at advertisements to work on TOSAT project. I know there is something inherently wrong with Capitalism (I suppose it's felt by everyone except rich people. For one thing, why is it so expensive to put a roof over our heads?). But I cannot clearly point how to make a better world where everything works okay. I always hide behind the excuse that "people who are a lot smarter than me tried to figure out for a very long time". Flawed human beings as we are, I have no idea how we can fix everything. I'm in a fatigue. A lot of people before my generation tried to change things and failed. We saw Communism come and fail. We saw many pseudo political trends come and fail (hippies and punks?) which led us to be cynical towards any attempts. Also as a participant of Capitalism system, I am often hesitant to bite the hands that feed me (or hands that might feed me in the future. I never got any ad jobs yet).

Sean has a designer background, and his fearless criticism on his potential clients are so admirable. In Hideo Okuda's novel Southbound, his character says,
"In this world, there are things that change slowly by fighting back till the end. Things like slavery and democracy. Equality wasn't just rewarded for free by some nice powerful/rich people. People had to fight every step to achieve it. If nobody fights the society doesn't change. I'm one of those people (245)"
Art doesn't have much power to change society but I'm happy that there are people like Sean who stands up for us (rights to not to become some corporations' marketing ploy everyday) , no matter how small it seems.

My intentions for participating with TOSAT weren't pure. More than criticizing advertisements, I wanted to flatter my ego by making people see my art work. Hey, I got a tiny bit of press too on Torontoist (except that they don't know who did it).

Anyways, I rambled nonsensically long enough. I'm going to go learn how to be a morally better and just person (at least try) watching Michael Sandel's lectures. Maybe after these lectures, I'll be able to participate other art projects like TOSAT with clear platformvideo managementvideo solutionsvideo player

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

My Summer Promo is Finally Here!

They are plastic hand fans! I declare this because somebody asked me today what it was suppose to be. Now I'm a little worried. North Americans do not use hand fans? I hope it doesn't head for the garbage bin.
I know, I know... the summer is practically over, but I just got this delivered TODAY. Oh god, the drama I had to go through to get these done. Three printers flaked out on me, and shipping was another drama. Santa Maria! 
But now they are finally here. And thank god, it is the hottest year ever, and September might be hot too. They are being shipped to you right now. If you are an art director/publisher and would like this awesome promo, email me your mailing address at
If you are my friend and would like one, grab me. 

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Thanks for Visiting My Booth at Fan Expo 2010

Lance Henriksen bought my buttons! Of all those booths, he chose mine to buy stuff! I said he can just take them for free, but he insisted on paying. "No, you gotta make a living too", he said. I gave him lots more free buttons and stickers on top of that. What a nice guy. Man, even my friends don't pay for my stuff. I felt really bad after taking a photo with him. He just wanted to look around and shop. But people did not leave him alone. Even when he was picking which buttons to buy, annoying people would talk to him. During all that, he never stopped smiling. He'd gladly pose for people and shake their hands. What a guy. I felt so bad for him. I wish I given him more stuff (as materialistic possession solves any problem in this capitalistic society). I wanted to thank him for his craft, but he must hear that too much. "Hey, I loved your work in Aliens! One of my favourite movies. I also love Alien vs. Predeator!" Aliens was 20 years ago for god sakes. Anyways, Mr. Henriksen, thanks for buying my buttons and taking photos with me. You are awesome.

The top right image is "Even When Strawberries are Falling From Sky, We are Sad" silk screen. Nobody bought one. Does it suck that much? With 4 colour hand pulled, it was a lot of work. I lowered the price to $20 immediately, but still no interest. *cry*
Using Photoshop's "automate" feature, I accidentally permanently lost all my high quality photos. So sad.

I'm in a mint condition.
I was quickly looking around before the opening hours.

 Here is my brother Juhyun Daniel Lee of Cat comics. :D
My brother is a software developer at Starz Animation. He never ever took art lessons (our mom was an art teacher and dad was an interior designer... so he did get some education, I suppose), but draws & paints much better than I. He also does a lot of paintings for game websites and indy adventure games.
Look, Kotaku once stole my brother's painting on Ron GIlbert:

Ah~ Thanks everyone for visiting my booth. I was so grateful. You are the best! And Keith, who bought my original 'So Noodly' painting. He came by during TCAF as well.
Thanks to you all, my magic mugs were gone within a few hours of opening. I will have more for the next year, and more designs.

See my complete FanExpo photos in my flickr.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Ricepaper Cover Illustration (Thanks Melissa and Rob) and a Magic Mug!

I'm on the cover of Ricepaper Magazine! Thanks Melissa and Rob for the amazing art direction. This season's Ricepaper was a Food Issue. Oh man, my favourite subject! I throughly enjoyed working on this project. 
 Back of the magazine.

 This was an original. We decided to switch the background to red since Ricepaper's other issues were darker colours as well.
Check out their website. I'm so excited to have my illustration on their website. Their magazine is so awesome! Ricepaper is an Asian-Canadian culture magazine from Vancouver. Read about exotic food imports from China, learn about eating local in Canada, history of Chinese restaurants and an article on Sursur Lee (with his famous Singaporean Style Slaw recipe - I was fortune of trying this on my birthday 3 years ago. Man, I will never forget its epic taste)!

Here are some rejected roughs. I was happy for their choice because it was the one I wanted to paint the most.

Lastly, a news! I will be at Fan Expo this year, again. Please come and visit my booth if you are coming to Fan Expo. Info is:

August 27-29th 2010
Friday 4-9PM
Saturday 10AM-7PM
Sunday 11AM-6PM
Metro Toronto Convention Centre, Toronto ON

I'm here:

This year, I have wicked MAGIC MUGS with my monsters. How is it magic? Like so:
 At first, it looks like a normal black mug. But when you pour hot water (or coffee)...
 A painting start to appear!
Tada~! Enjoy your hot tea with Hyein Lee painting, only while it's hot.
I made 2 designs, 3 mugs each. There are very limited quantity, so hurry to get yours. :D

Thursday, August 12, 2010

What I taught my students today...

I teach digital motion graphics at Continuing Studies at OCAD. 

What I taught in Flash class today. :D