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Secrets

This project was inspired by the opening and closing lines in Jay Chou’s song, ‘Secret/不能说的秘密’. The opening line is about lifting a coffee cup from a saucer, “冷咖啡离开了杯垫” and the last line of the song is about autumn leaves and fragmented pieces, “飘落后才发现 这幸福的碎片, 要我怎么捡?”. I decided to use hundreds of individual coffee stain rings, many of them broken and imperfect like fallen autumn leaves, to form Jay Chou’s portrait.

The singer tells a tale of heartache, of a woman who has travelled through time from 1979 and met Jay in 1999, where they fall in love. She then goes back to 1979 and sketches a portrait of him. My painting is meant to look like a sepia-toned old photograph, so as to capture the essence of his story.

The project took about 12 hours to finish. Coffee is quite a challenging medium to use – too little water and the rings wouldn’t form easily, too much water and the rings blend into each other, resulting in an unformed pool of coffee. I had to also wait for the lighter parts too dry up before stamping on the darker rings, or else the rings would not be visible

This project was inspired by the opening and closing lines in Jay Chou’s song, ‘Secret/不能说的秘密’. The opening line is about lifting a coffee cup from a saucer, “冷咖啡离开了杯垫” and the last line of the song is about autumn leaves and fragmented pieces, “飘落后才发现 这幸福的碎片, 要我怎么捡?”. I decided to use hundreds of individual coffee stain rings, many of them broken and imperfect like fallen autumn leaves, to form Jay Chou’s portrait.

The singer tells a tale of heartache, of a woman who has travelled through time from 1979 and met Jay in 1999, where they fall in love. She then goes back to 1979 and sketches a portrait of him. My painting is meant to look like a sepia-toned old photograph, so as to capture the essence of his story.

The project took about 12 hours to finish. Coffee is quite a challenging medium to use – too little water and the rings wouldn’t form easily, too much water and the rings blend into each other, resulting in an unformed pool of coffee. I had to also wait for the lighter parts too dry up before stamping on the darker rings, or else the rings would not be visible

Rotate 90° to portrait for full experience.