Monday, December 17, 2018

Comics: Artist and non-Artist Life

A series of 4 comic strips comparing life of a non-artist and an artist!

 You might find this one familiar from my third book!

 This one is true story when I was moving house in US while I was studying at an art university.

This free nude drawing session never happened though...

Monday, December 10, 2018

Comics: Women's Mystery

There is always a shortage of clothes no matter how much we already bought...

Monday, December 3, 2018

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Interview with editor of ONE PIECE, Mr. Kohei Onishi

I had a rare opportunity to interview Mr. Kohei Onishi 大西 恒平, Deputy Editor-in-Chief of Shueisha Weekly Shonen Jump during the preview of the "Hello, ONE PIECE" exhibition. He is the 5th editor in charge of ONE PIECE since 2007 and has also worked as an editor before for various popular Shonen Jump titles like Gintama, Naruto, Death Note and Hikaru no Go.
(Photo from right: Mr. Onishi, my assistant, me)

The interview was originally conducted in Japanese with a translator.

Q1: Besides Malaysia and Singapore, will you be having the exhibition at other countries after this?
The exhibition will also be held in 6 cities in China, including Chengdu and Shenzhen.

Q2: What is the key to running a long series like One Piece?
Initially Oda-sensei was only planning to run the series for 10 years, but now it is already running for over 20 years. Shōnen Jump has a 20-page deadline every week so it is extremely tedious for the artist to keep up, especially for 20 years! Therefore to achieve such a long running series, Oda-sensei must work throughout the nights and that is only possible by having a strong passion of what he wants to draw.

(We are amazed! 😮💦)

Q3: Do the editors affect the storyline too? To what extent is the influence?
The major outline and the small details in the weekly stories are all written by Oda-sensei. The editor is more like an advisor, such as when Oda-sensei wants to introduce a new character, I will advise if that is a good time or not. There is a meeting with Oda-sensei every week to discuss about the story or new character and the longest conversation we ever had was 12 hours long! But usually it’s just 4 hours.

Q4: Do you also include discussion about the anime as well?
Yes, we will also discuss about the animation and movie contents. When Oda-sensei has opinions, he will let me know and I will relay them to the production companies.

Q5: For foreigners outside of Japan, what would it take to be able to get published in JUMP? Or become an assistant to your artists like Oda-sensei? 😬
JUMP has an award for the work submitted to the publisher and there is an increasing number of entries from foreigners. In fact, there is a Korean artist serialising with us now. As for becoming an assistant, of course he/she must come to Japan and reside in Japan first, as well as able to speak Japanese because he/she would have to work closely with the artist. Needless to say, the applicant must be very good at drawing pictures.

Q6: How do they apply as assistants, do they submit their work to the publisher first?
Yes, they have to apply to the publisher and Oda-sensei will check if the work is good enough. Then Oda-sensei will provide a sample and ask the applicant to draw this kind of picture as a test.

And that is all for the interview!

I hope my readers learnt more about the making of a successful manga series such as ONE PIECE and the important role of comic editors. Be sure to check out the exhibition and my previous blog entry about it!

"Hello, ONE PIECE"exhibition
The Maritime Experiential Museum (RWS)
Now till 1 Jan 2019
Ticket price: $15 (includes entry to museum)
To purchase online:

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Hello, ONE PIECE exhibition at RWS till 1Jan 2019

I had the privilege to attend a preview of "Eiichiro Oda presents Hello, ONE PIECE Luffy is here!" exhibition at The Maritime Experiential Museum in Resorts World Sentosa. The exhibition runs from now till 1 Jan 2019 and costs $15, which also includes entry into the museum.

The exhibition is divided into 4 parts:

1. Hello, ONE PIECE!
The exhibition starts off with a greeting and overview of ONE PIECE to visitors. You can also spot an animated projection of Luffy, where the I is located (above my head), from time to time.

There is also a photo-taking spot to fulfil your temporary dream of becoming the King of Pirates!!! (Yes you are supposed to raise both hands like Luffy!😂)

2. Hello, Luffy!
Part 2 showcases the five keywords that defines Luffy through the manga pages.

Some original manuscripts can be seen too.

3. Hello, Colourful World!
Next is the coloured illustration section with high resolution reproductions of the originals, as well as a video showing how he coloured his artwork.

It also features a replica of his drawing desk. On the desk are his art materials, sketches, decorations, references, as well as his secret manuals that he uses to document all of his ONE PIECE characters and skills. It is like a guidebook for himself as the ONE PIECE world is very big.

4. Hello, Playful World!
This is a VR experience zone where you can get into the mind of Oda-sensei drawing using the SketchUp software. It costs an additional $8 and lasts for 3-5min.

And yes, fans can spot the hidden pandas at each booth too!

As fans of ONE PIECE, my assistant and I really enjoyed the exhibition and left the place in awe. We were not only impressed by the artwork, but also Oda-sensei's passion to create such a big universe and long-running series with new characters all the time.

Next, I will be featuring an exclusive interview with Mr. Kohei Onishi, Deputy Editor-in-Chief of Shueisha Weekly Shonen Jump. He is the 5th editor in charge of ONE PIECE since 2007. If you are interested to know more about the making of this famous manga series, please come back to my blog again tomorrow! 😁

Monday, November 12, 2018

Monday, November 5, 2018

Comics: The Challenge

I recently ate a couple of hotpot lunch with my yoga inc friends and wow I'm amazed how much food we could stuff. I think doing yoga helps stretch the stomach too...

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Monday, October 29, 2018

Comics: The Great Scare

I think this is the scariest thing for the modern man.

Idea: Ali from my Patreon

Monday, October 22, 2018

Comics: Facing Work

When I suddenly have a lot of work in hand, this will happen... how about you? 😅

Monday, October 15, 2018

Comics: How Are You?

One thing that surprised me when I first went to US was everybody liked to ask "How are you?". Even when you are not fine, you have to say you're fine, because otherwise there would be an awkward silence and you would have to explain why you were not fine...

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Takashimaya Japan Food Matsuri in Singapore

Ok I'm back blogging again! Woho~ (Because I finished some projects and editing my new book) This time I visited the Japan Food Matsuri (matsuri means festival) at Takashimaya basement 2 hall to check out what they brought in from Japan 👊 The fair runs from 28 Sep to 14 Oct.

Monday, October 1, 2018

Comics: How to irritate your yoga teacher

Since my surgeon gave me the green light to continue my yoga classes, I have returned back to my usual classes, but I only attend them twice a week. Not sure if I will increase in the future but I think I'll take it slowly for now.

Guest appearance: Classmate and patreon Colin!

Monday, September 17, 2018

Monday, September 10, 2018

Comics: Changing Times

I feel a bit jelly :P
In the beginning I was positioning myself as a mix of artist and influencer but when the books came along I retreated back to just an artist... I wonder if it is too late to go back now that I'm approaching 40 😅

Monday, September 3, 2018

Comics: Chasing

Recently many people around me are chasing after this drama series called Yanxi Gonglue or called "Story of Yanxi Palace". It's been some time since there's any decent historic drama to chase with a good story, acting and cinematography. But chasing after 70 episodes does feel like doing a marathon...

How about you, are you watching this series too?

Monday, August 20, 2018

Comics: Snowball Effect on social media

I used to post a lot of my problems on my personal account and people would start commenting on what I should do even though they may not have done it before. Many times I become even more frustrated than when I started off. Then along the way there are flame wars and friends unfriended or blocked... somehow people are merciless to people whom they never met before.

Hence now I keep most of the things to myself or just message my friends privately to rant. How about you? Do you have such problem?

Monday, August 13, 2018

Comics: The mysterious Shinjuku Station

It is a place where Google maps fail and all hope is lost to find the specific exits...

It took me a year while I was studying in Japan and staying at Shinjuku to figure out the exits and underground passages. Unfortunately I never got to meet any friends (both Japanese and foreigners) successfully whenever we wanted to meet at exit XXX. The signs were confusing and not easy to find the other one if you were at the wrong side.

Monday, August 6, 2018

Comics: What people usually do during travel

I tend to wake up at... 9-11am...
But if there's a hotel breakfast buffet then maybe 8.30am...

Monday, July 30, 2018

Comics: Travel

Sorry everyone, I forgot to update last week!!! So here are 2 strips at one go~
It's always troublesome to sort the photos after holidays, I wonder if my readers are the same too?

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Recovering from Inguinal hernia open repair surgery

This blog post is to share my experience with people who have hernia and what to expect after surgery.

I felt a small lump that comes and goes on my right groin without any pain at the beginning of the year so I ignored it for several months. Moreover I was rushing my 4th book at that time and had no time to see a doctor. I was worried if it's something serious, I would have to take time off from the book and I would miss the deadline. But I continued to ignore the lump after I was done with the book because it comes and goes, and there was no pain.

However it became worse after a replacement yoga instructor took over a class that I regularly go to in June. She made us do a lot of hip opening, stretches and core work and I felt pain a few hours later. My right groin area was in small pain whenever I walked. I couldn't tell if it was the lump causing the problem or tendon/muscles got torn so I went to see both a masseur and a TCM (traditional chinese medicine) physician. The masseur suspected I just hurt the tendons but my physician suspected that I have hernia. She advised me to see a gynaecology doctor for a scan to make sure. Meanwhile the masseur fixed the pain I had while walking so I had a glimmer of hope it was just a simple muscle tear.

Unfortunately my gynae doctor had the same suspicion as my TCM physician because the lump disappeared when I laid down and became more prominent when standing. She ordered both an uterus and a pelvic ultrasound scan for me. A week later, the result was out, I had femoral hernia 😢. I was referred to a general surgeon to have it fixed. Because the lump was not obvious, I had another scan done at the hospital, but the result was the same, femoral hernia. Their advise was once there is a hole, it can only get bigger as you age and the only way to fix it is with a mesh repair done. The procedure is common, simple and safe and I won't need to worry about my intestines popping out and get strangulated (which will become life-threatening).

By then, I already felt no pain but just occasional discomfort as if my right groin had a liquid balloon. It was especially uncomfortable when my stomach was gassy. I couldn't do yoga, carry heavy things nor run as these could make the hernia worse. So I opted for surgery in hope that I can do all the things that I used to be able to do.

However I read online about the side effects and grew worried. Some people experience chronic pain and some had an infected mesh that requires a second surgery to remove it. So I asked my surgeon if I could do without a mesh but he still recommended to have it. He said that if there's no problem for the first 2 months, then it is unlikely to have infected mesh after that. So I hoped for the best.

The open surgery
My surgery was scheduled in the afternoon 3.30pm so I could still eat and drink by 9.30am. It would be an open surgery under general anaesthesia because the doctor thought that I was young and can recover faster than the older folks... (so I have been having elderly problem at a young age 😑...) It was the first time I have a surgery done so I was a bit nervous when I was rolled into the surgical theatre. The anaesthesia doctor introduced herself and reconfirmed that I had no allergy before injection. The surgeon talked to me for a while and within a few minutes, my eyelids became heavy and I was knocked out.

The surgeon woke me up after the surgery, which was around 70-90 mins and asked how I felt. I replied ok and continued to close my eyes while I was being rolled back to my ward. It was as if I woke up from a good sleep. The doctor visited me later and told me that I had the more common inguinal hernia instead of femoral hernia and the wound was around 2". There was some swelling and my entire right lower tummy was aching. He said it's because of the pulling of the skin during surgery and it should get better after some days.

Day 1:
There was some pain on my wound after surgery that extended to my right tummy. I was given painkillers which helped. I was able to get down from bed and slowly make my way to the toilet but it was painful sitting down, getting up and moving around.The wound was swollen and of course I opted not to take a bath. I had a sore throat so I drank sips of water.

Day 2:
Getting down from bed and going to toilet was slightly better and there was no pain when I wasn't moving. The back of my heels were getting painful from lying down for too long. I can be discharged in the morning so I sat most of the time at my parent's home. But this made my back uncomfortable and my legs pretty stiff. My sore throat was gone, maybe thanks to the antibiotics too.

Day 3:
I was worried about constipation but luckily my breakfast coffee got me back into "motion". Groin was still swollen but significantly lesser pain when sitting down and getting up. I tried to walk more because I felt my legs swelling up due to lack of movement. I decreased painkillers by one dose as I was worried about its side effects.

Day 4:
There was an odd feeling that the wound was more swollen than yesterday and a bit numb but lesser pain when I sat down and got up. I stopped the painkillers completely as the pain was little and bearable. I tried to walk around the house more so blood can get flowing to my legs instead of just sitting down all the time. I even walked slowly around the block for 20min. The waterproof bandage seemed still intact. I had no sore throat but the occasional coughs made the wound burn in pain.

Day 5:
Groin is still swollen and the waterproof bandage seemed attached to my skin... (I guess it will be painful when it's time to remove). Somehow my right lower ab is a bit more painful than before when I get out of bed. Hope the pain disappears gradually. I walked a bit inside the house instead of outside.

Still swollen and painful whenever I cough. I guess the swelling and pain will take some time to disappear completely.

My right lower ab is no longer in pain. Not sure if the pain in stretching is due to the waterproof plaster or not. I was well enough to walk to nearby mall to eat and do groceries.

Day 8:
Went to see my surgeon to have the plaster removed. Wound is recovering well and clean but still swollen and numb. Doctor said it will take another 2-3 weeks for it to go down. I was given advise to only walk for 10min and not more than that for the next 2 weeks as the wound might ache if I push too much. After which, I could walk as much as I want but still no yoga for at least 2 months.

Day 9:
Not sure if it's because I went to my client's place yesterday to help with their wall murals so my lower tummy is in ache/pain whenever I stand up and walk around. It also hurts more when I was trying to get up from bed.

Day 10:
Tummy ache is gone but the wound still hurts when I move and the whole pelvic area is still swollen. The area around the wound is also still numb, though less numb than before. Maybe that's why I could feel more pain...

Day 11 and beyond:
Swelling and pain feels about the same everyday now. It's still painful whenever I cough or sneeze or use that part of the muscle to move, such as lying down or getting up. I can't toss around in bed like I used to because it would hurt... Hopefully it will get better next week!

The cause of my hernia?
The cause of my hernia could be born with naturally thinner muscle wall, or too much sitting to draw or yoga. I'm not exactly sure but I guess I wouldn't be doing deep forward bends or back bends for a long time...

Monday, July 2, 2018

Comics: Fashion on an Artist

So far I had to replace the soles of 2 pairs of shoes and 1 pair of sandals. Another pair of pump shoes' lining disintegrated after I walked halfway to the train station...

Monday, June 18, 2018

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Face Shower Bar by Irén Review (thorough facial within 30min in Singapore)

I was too busy and did not do any facial for a year already. Coincidently I was invited to try out this quick facial that promises to thoroughly clean your clogged pores and sooth your skin within 30min using their very own formulated skin care made in Japan. So the deal was if it was good I will write a blog, if not I will pay for my own treatment. So as you can see, I was satisfied 😆

Monday, June 11, 2018

Comics: Getting paid as a freelancer

Getting paid as a freelancer is not easy, especially when clients pay by check... many things can go wrong... like finance department is busy, partner agency is busy, boss is busy, lost in mail, etc... One of the local retailers is owing me 9 months of sale, hence one of the reasons why I'm no longer doing books!

Saturday, June 2, 2018

Buying my domain from hugedomains

I created my Facebook page on dec 2010 but only decided to register my domain in 2013. But alas, I was too late and it was already hijacked by Hugedomains :(

As you can see, they hijacked the domain I wanted to register in late 2012, during the time when my comics were going viral. I forgot how much they were selling my domain but it was later put up for sale at a whopping US$2650!!!

I think it wasn't worth to buy and bought a local domain name ""  instead. For the next 5 years I did not think of buying back my domain until I started wondering... why a few of my artist friends could get commission work from overseas clients but I'm kinda stuck with local clients.

I did not think my comics were very local and half of it should be relatable to everyone around the world. I wouldn't say my skill is fantastic but it is not too bad neither. So I began wondering, could it be the domain name? Could it be because of the .sg at the end of my domain that made my website look suspicious? So the only way to find out was to buy it back and try out.

Of course, I wouldn't buy without trying to bargain first so I tried to offer US$1500 but it was rejected as the price was too low... so I tried $2400... and it was accepted 😭 I reluctantly made the payment and received the login details for my domain on namebright the next day. I logged in and successfully changed the nameservers but it seems that because the domain was newly transferred over, I couldn't transfer it out to my regular domain registrar.

I hope my investment was worth it.


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