postmoderndisco chasing memories

Last year I did the album cover for postmoderndisco‘s EP, “Chasing Memories” which came out late 2014. I met Mandy years before and have always been a fan of her music, so it was a great opportunity to do her album cover. There were many ideas thrown around and sketches made about what the cover should be and what it should feel. In the end, a Chinese Empress was decided to represent the Asian roots and influences of Mandy’s music, and a dreamy feeling that I feel fairly represents the atmospheric feeling in this EP’s tracks.

Personally, I have a great interest in Chinese history as well, so designing the Empress was a lot of fun for me. Her head dress and robes were inspired by the Qing Dynasty, which was China’s last imperial dynasty from 1644-1912. Some historical accuracy were foregone to simplify her design, however the dragon on her imperial robe was deliberate. Traditionally, dragon patterns are reserved for males of the court (usually the emperor and his sons), and the imperial yellow (a very specific yellow) is for the emperor only. Throughout China’s imperial history, all the emperors have been male, except one – Wu Ze Tian (武则天) who briefly took over the Tang Dynasty and formed Zhou Dynasty, hailing herself as the Emperor and not Empress consort. My design had nothing to with the Tang Dynasty era but the dragon was deliberately included in the design, not a phoenix, to signify this is an Empress of power. Just like how I purposely made the head dress and flowers gigantic. Of course, the point of which was that this fabulous EP was made by a talented female individual. :)


chasing memories

You can listen to and purchase “Chasing Memories” by postmoderndisco at

It’s been a year of painting the sunrise!

Oh man, I need to get on this blogging thing some more. 2015 is going to be more blog posts, I hope. But yes! I’ve painted the sunrise from the same spot for a year. I estimate around 70 paintings have been made during this time. So I took a good number of them and made it into a compilation video, with a progress video in the beginning. Kind of neat to see how the sketches have progressed through the year as I learned more about lighting and colour, as well as design choices. There’s still a lot of room for improvement though, hopefully this coming year will be addressing some of that.

The background music is from postmoderndisco’s EP “Chasing Memories” (which I did the album cover for, but more on that in a later post). The track is “Edge of Eden”, and the EP is available here:

Now for the paintings!! I haven’t posted them here in so long, I’ll just post some favourites since my last post. You can of course see all of them on my Tumblr for it:

sunrise painting

August 1, 2014

sunrise painting

September 19, 2014

sunrise painting

November 19, 2014

sunrise painting

November 28, 2014

sunrise painting

January 8, 2015

sunrise painting

January 21, 2015

sunrise painting

Sunset, January 27, 2015

As usual, mostly painted with Procreate on iPad and Photoshop. Til next post!

acrylic painting by caroline ji

Acrylic on paper

A master study using some variation of Zorn palette. I’ve been having a yellow phase lately where I find myself attracted to anything lemon/cadmium-ish yellow, it’s a little crazy.

Also what’s crazy is my acrylic paints here. They’re over 10 years old and were bought for some completely non-art related geography project or something. Back then I didn’t know much about paints or different hues/properties/what have you. (I barely knew how to draw, much less painting.) So I got 5 tubs (500mL lol) of which I thought were simply just black and white, and the primary colours. I had a good look so many years later, and they’re actually titanium white, carbon black, bright red, primary yellow, and phthalo blue. I’m pretty happy with these colours actually, except for carbon black. Way too cool (especially for this painting) and it was a bit of a struggle to add warm colours into it while maintaining the value. Good colour mixing exercise I guess but nevertheless, I’m surprised that the paints still work and the colours are doable.

erin in oils

Oils on 6″x6″ panel

megan in oils

Oils on 8″x10″ panel

grandma in oils

Oils on 5″x7″ panel

Some oil paintings I did in workshops with Keita Morimoto … one of my favourite contemporary painters. :) First two are alla prima, last one is through multiple sessions. It was my first time learning how to use oils, very interesting medium. (First time learning how to paint from someone who knows what they’re doing, really.) Oils are super flexible yet unforgiving. I’m still obsessed with gouache atm but will definitely explore more into oils. I’m also glad I didn’t try to learn oils on my own coz I probably would’ve killed myself sniffing things I shouldn’t be sniffing, haha.