I’ll just say, I’ve never spent so much money in one semester for…anything (studio supplies, lab fees, you name it)—yet I’ve never felt so satisfied with my work before. Within a semester, I’ve created a portfolio that I’m actually proud of for once. Architecture studio projects never did that for me because the inputs always outweighed the outputs.
Without much further ado, here are glimpses of my final photo project in book form. I’d rather not show my photos just yet—because I want to continue with the project and get some better shots before I show all of them together someday.
This book is not my story, nor is it my parents’. Rather, it is the story of all first generation Asian parents told in their own [unedited] words but through the perspectives of their second-generation children. Underneath the bitter sarcasm, underhanded compliments, and passive-aggressive emails, the children are still able to recognize and experience the subtlety of the first-generations’ unconditional (and often unexpected) love.
The term “fob” was once used in a derogatory way to address Asian immigrants in the United States, but since then, people—like me—have tried to repossess the term to describe someone who is culturally unique, hilarious at times (for not quite fully assimilating into the American way of life), but—in the end—still downright lovable and worthy of sharing.
My friend, Teresa Wu, and I started mymomisafob.com and mydadisafob.com in October 2008, to do just that—showcase our “fob” parents in all of their [priceless] glory. People send us submissions because they think their parents are the cutest people on the planet—not because they are embarrassed of their parents’ surface-level shortcomings. I have compiled and organized a few favorites by dates posted to help me narrate my story.
“Yellow peril” and general feelings of xenophobia have nearly vanished from the multicultural Bay Area and other parts of this country we call America. As Asian Americans, we no longer try to deny and hide our families’ cultural differences; rather, we fully embrace them and hope others can slowly understand and appreciate the shoes at the door, the questionable-looking (but exquisite) dishes, the eccentric Feng Shui beliefs—and yes, our parents’ mastery of the new Chinglish language.
joke. (crap, typo too)
I kid. The last time I ate congee for breakfast was…on the plane to Taiwan.
my book was formatted with headings + submissions on the left, images + titles & subtitles on the right.
most people had beautifully matted prints that put my project to shame…
Oh, side note, in the middle of review, policemen and firefighters busted through with a stretcher. Apparently, a poor kid fainted in the middle of his final review for ED11B. ED11B?! That’s the first [intro] design studio within the series. No one should have to be sent to the hospital on a stretcher because of studio. To all you intended or current architecture students, 72 hours of non-sleep makes you medically insane. Don’t do it. Brain-damaged students can’t design anymore. With that said, I should probably take a nap before I start/finish my 10-15 page paper due tomorrow (you can count on it being 9.5 pages before the period trick).