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2017-11 13

[Alumni]88 Ways of Speaking: To Keep Myself

“Tigers die and leave their skins: People die and leave their names.” This is a famous proverb that points a great master’s name that lives on. Son Hwa-shin (Korean Language & Literature, ’09) as a high school student thought she also wanted to pass her name down, especially through her writing. “The idea that you eventually die, but your work lives for eternity is so fascinating,” said Son, with her eyes glowing with enthusiasm. News H met Son, a beginning essayist who just published her first book through Daum Kakao’s amateur writing platform, ‘brunch beta’. "I wish to write an essay that can be called a masterpiece." “He was a person who knew exactly what he wanted.” Son always had a passion for writing, and that led her to major in Korean language and literature. Nevertheless, she did not realize that writing can also be a breadwinning career. While having a minor identity crisis, Son went to an exhibition to clear her head during the summer of 2015. That is when she read the quote: “He was a person who knew exactly what he wanted.” “I was genuinely stunned by the words,” said Son. That was the moment when she realized that the root of her crisis starts from ignorance of her own wills. Son said what comes between ‘I am just a’ and a period truly represents oneself. Son thought ‘writer’ fills her blank. "I am just a _____ ." What fills your blank? Luckily enough, she encountered the notice for ‘brunch project’ online which promised its first-place winner with an opportunity to publish his or her book through Kakao. “This is it,” thought Son. She wanted the blue ribbon so bad to quit her job and focus on writing. “It would be a lie if I say I was never worried, but I had faith. The blue ribbon felt like mine, and I wanted to turn my life around with this award,” mentioned Son. However, life gave her a lemon. She did not make it to the first place but to second. Son, however, turned it into a lemonade instead. Second-place, unlike the first, is awarded with some funds to support the writer to publish a book on one's own. The process of writing a book proposal, sending them to several dozens of publishers, and having meetings taught her a lot. “Come to think of it, I feel lucky to win the second-place instead of first,” reminisced Son. The book 88 Ways of Speaking: To Keep Myself (2016). Click the image to purchase the book. (Photo courtesy of Sam and Parkers) Writing as a way to love oneself Son’s book ’88 Ways of Speaking: To Keep Myself (2016)’ contains 88 brunch posts that tell everyone to ‘talk like oneself’. “I felt like in this fast-changing world, people keep losing and forgetting who they are. In that context, I perceive life as battle to keep who you are.” Son strongly asserted that in order to talk like yourself, you first have to know yourself, which can be accomplished through writing. For most of the people who are afraid of writing due to various reasons, Son recommends them to write about what you like. It might lighten your burden by writing on an external subject, but in the end, all writings encompass the thoughts and logic of the writer. Once you get used to writing, Son emphasizes having one’s own style is also important. Left is Amedeo Modiglian's 'Portrait of Jeanne Hebuterne in a large hat (1918)', and the right piece is Edvard Munch's 'The Scream(1893)'. Both paintings uncover the essence through distortion. (Photo courtesy of Wikipedia) Wanting to have excellence in writing, Son also studiously develops her own writing style. She aims at highly connotative, contextual writings through writing less. “I often think of art when I write,” said Son. Amedeo Modigliani or Edvard Munch reveals the essence of a subject not through depicting it in a realistic and specific way, but rather through simplifying and distorting it. Son also enjoys adding her literary touch to her news articles. “If you think of an article, it feels cold and simply informative. But an article can ironically provide a better understanding through literary approaches,” mentioned Son. This technique is called ‘not tell but show’. For instance, Son could simply write ‘the reporter met actor Hong at a café in Samchung-dong’, but by adding ‘a café with a beautiful chandelier’, readers can instantly picture the place where the interview took place. Son is a young dreamer with an affection and enthusiam for writing. Son definitely plans to publish more essays in the future. “I’ve never really thought of myself as an essayist, but by being called as one, I am even more motivated to write more essays,” said Son with excitement. Throughout the interview, Son turned into a young dreamer whenever she talked about her writing. With such passion and diligence, News H is looking forward to reading more of her works. To catch up what has already been uploaded, click HERE. Kim So-yun dash070@hanyang.ac.kr Photos by Choi Min-ju

2017-11 06

[Alumni]Blocks of Opinions Making the Hall of Fame, Glowpick

The cosmetic market in Korea has been booming for a long time, releasing numerous new brands and products. Unlike in the past, where ‘road shop products’ and ‘department store products’ had a clear division in their quality and price, many consumers are now lost in the wide array of choices available. CEO of GLOWDAYZ, Kong Jun-sik (Journalism & Mass Communication, ’11) proposed a solution in this confusing era. Kong wanted to make Glowpick as a medium of wise cosmetics shopping for consumers. Honest reviews as road signs “Glowpick is a mobile application that provides information to consumers in the form of a ranking, 100 percent based on their reviews,” said Kong. Realizing the fact that people are lost in the sea of information, Kong decided to collect reviews from ordinary people, the actual consumers of makeup. “Making a choice must have been difficult, especially when many beauty shows or blogs have accepted paid advertisements in order to flourish, without providing straightforward suggestions” lamented Kong. Therefore, unlike many review applications, Glowpick does not sensor customer reviews, even if they may seem extreme or contain swear words. Kong mentioned that he wants to create a comfortable environment as if the users are talking to their friends offline. The standard of a ‘good cosmetic product’ may differ for every person and every beauty application. Some value the components, and others value the professional’s opinion. In Glowpick’s case, Kong believes the product that has been recommended the most by the largest number of people is the best product. That is why Kong had striven to collect more than 2 million frank opinions from the past. Through such effort, Kong was able to bring the attention of major brands and marketing operators on the importance of consumer reports. “Now we can process and provide the information to cosmetic companies so that they can consider the public opinion in developing new products,” said Kong, proudly. A screen capture of the Glowpick (Photo courtesy of Glowpick) Now more than just a ranking application When the two reporters from News H had congratulated him on making Glowpick’s first offline store in Shinsegae Gangnam, Kong waved his hands with modesty. Now GLOWDAYZ has made its first step in the offline distribution channel, but Kong has bigger dreams. “It’s only part of the plan,” said Kong. The ultimate goal of the company, he mentioned, is to equip its own distribution channel. He aims to develop Glowpick to provide accurate information that fits with individual skin type, and the consumers can conveniently purchase the product without having to leave the application. Behind all the glowing success, Kong has experienced two times the bitter failures. Kong first grew his interest in IT business in his first job at a media company. Media trend at that time was changing from traditional newspapers to mobile news, so Kong created new media contents in the company. Then, after graduation, Kong started his own venture both in Korea and in the States. “Both didn’t really work out too well for various reasons. But thinking back, those experiences became stepping stones for me,” recalled Kong. He also asserted that Korean society has to be more open to failures. "That way, more people, including the younger generation, should feel safer to bring their ideas into the world, which they should. I myself wouidn't be able to overcome the obstacles I faced," said Kong with a warm smile. The offline store of Glowpick in Shinsegae Gangnam (Photo courtesy of Glowpick) Kim So-yun dash070@hanyang.ac.kr Photos by Kim Youn-soo

2017-10 02

[Alumni]Don’t be Afraid to Follow Your Values

The third top box office hit in the history of Korean documentary films, Our President (2017) is directed by a Hanyang alumni, Lee Chang-jae (Policy Studies, ’94). He studied engineering before coming to Hanyang, and studied law in our school. After graduation, he worked in the field of journalism, then media. Now he is a documentary movie director, a writer, and a professor. News H visited Lee this week to have a closer look into his past and recent work. Lee is enthusiastically explaining how leading one's life by oneself is important. What seems like a winding path “If I look back, it was not all so meaningless after all,” said Lee, thinking back to his past. Lee studied law because of his parent’s will. He originally wanted to study history, but his parents told him he would never get a job majoring in history. During his college years, he wanted to discover and prove what he liked and was good at. He figured writing was his path, and applied for numerous competitions, all of which he did not win. Dramatically, he won first place in the Hanyang Literature Competition. “Thinking ‘I wanted to walk this path’ in my mind only seemed like it would fly away so easily. I had to prove myself before really going into the other direction.” After being discharged from the military, Lee felt that he must climb the tree to eat the fruit. Hoping to study journalism, he desperately felt the need for more information. There were not a lot of graduates, nor peers to help him. Therefore, he knocked on the doors of the Executive Vice President and Head of the Office of Planning. He demanded a preparation group for the press exam, which is now the preparation course for the press examination. In his first and second job, he felt he lost the dominance over his life once again. Leading a hectic life and being promoted fast, time flew, and he had sipped his bridle away. Hence, he went to Chicago to learn film. Poster of Lee's latest movie, Our President (2017) One step forward at the edge of a cliff There is a saying in Buddhism, ‘百尺竿頭進一步’. It means to take a step forward at the edge of a hundred ‘chuck’ (a traditional measure length of a hand, 33.3cm.) cliff. Going to Chicago and coming back to Korea was a big step for Lee. Making a movie took about three years, and with him having nothing left in Korea made him feel heavy. That’s when he was offered a position with the school. Lee makes movies on the topics he is interested in. The movie, On the Road (2013) was based on the reflection he had 20 years ago, seriously considering entering the Buddhist priesthood. The latest movie, Our President (2017) started on Lee’s hope to remind Korean citizens that we once had a time when people chose their own presidential candidates and the president. “Just like superheroes go and save the world when they are told of their super-power, I wanted to give our citizens a reminder that they own their country.” Lee mentioned that because another documentary movie on the late Roh’s life was released just a few months before Lee’s movie, he had to look for the clips that were not used in the other movie. Looking through the 60 hour long material, the last moment when Roh says, “I am Roh Moo-hyun” and turns his back caught Lee’s eyes. “It felt like the clip was left unused for me.” That’s when he decided the ending moment of the entire film. “Out of 9000 minutes of the interview, only 40 minutes are used in the documentary. That’s why I need to look back at the materials and take some time for myself to contemplate.” Lee always notices himself being changed after a film. “I have to be completely immersed into one’s life in order to make a documentary film. Change in my perspective is almost inevitable,” said Lee. He pointed that introspection and learning has to be balanced to form a truly dimensional self. That is why he always writes a book after a film. Lee plans to start on another project around the upcoming December. “Whenever I make a new movie, external success is not my goal. Only my inner values that I pursue truly fulfills me,” said Lee with a peaceful smile on his face. Kim So-yun dash070@hanyang.ac.kr Photos by Kim Youn-soo

2017-08 07

[Alumni]Engineer Publishing a Dictionary

Living in a country where you do not speak the language can be one of the most challenging things in the world. There is a proud Hanyangian who overcame the difficulty and even made a dictionary of the foreign language. Kim Woo-taek (Department of Automotive Engineering, '02) published ‘Cambodian-Korean- English Korean-Cambodian- English Dictionary’ which contains more than 40,000 vocabularies in September 2014. First person in the world to publish Korean-Cambodian dictionary “I never dared to make a dictionary from the beginning,” said Kim. Coming to Cambodia without speaking the language, he had to study hard to communicate with the locals. As private education was not an option at the moment, Kim chose to learn the language by himself and started reading newspapers. Kim symbolized the letters in his head while reading the paper. “I still get some pronunciations wrong because I learned the langauge through reading”, reminisced Kim. After a while, he was able to read documents without having to look for dictionaries. He kept notes on the vocabularies he does not know while studying in such way, and his notes became a valuable asset in publishing the dictionary. Kim and his wife, Som Sopheap is holding Kim's three publications. (Photo courtesy of Kim) One day, he wanted to make a good use of all the data he has. He visited every bookstore in Cambodia and bought 20 dictionaries, then typed them page by page for four years. It took much longer than his initial estimation, but with passion he invested his nights in the work. For a person who has no professional background knowledge, it was not easy to match Korean and Cambodian dictionaries with the accurate nuances. One of the most arduous works in the progress was writing pronunciations of Cambodian words in Korean because the two languages are phonetically different. Kim and his friend are standing infront of a church in Kampot, Cambodia. (Photo courtesy of Kim) ខ្ញុំស្រឡាញ់អ្នកកម្ពុជា។ (I Love you, Cambodia!) As an answer to the question ‘Who helped the most in publishing the dictionary?’, Kim told it was his wife without any hesitation. Kim’s wife, Som pronounced the words and edited the dictionary with Kim for about a year. “She helped me with all the hard works,” said Kim. It is not only his wife he loves about Cambodia. Kim explained the country as the place where you “give and help, instead of fight and win”. Leading a happy life being his utmost goal, he has been living in the country since January of 2009. From the love of the country, Kim published three other books ‘Cambodia Tour Guidebook (2005)’, ‘Cambodian Tourist Attractions Through The Lens (2017)’, and ‘Guidebook on Cambodian Agriculture (2014)’. His publications are popular in both countries, and the dictionary is considered as a must-have among Koreans in Cambodia, and Cambodians who are aiming to get a job in Korea. Transferring agricultural technology While running a tourism business in Phnom Penh, Kim is also keeping himself busy with KOPIA (Korea Program on International Agriculture). He works as a PR agent in the organization, transferring advanced Korean agricultural technology to Cambodia. Also, under KOPIA, Kim operates Cambodia Agriculture Information Center. “I am happy that there is something to do and someone who needs me” said Kim. As an engineer, CEO, husband, PR agent and publisher, Kim blueprints a future where he can be a bridge between Korean and Cambodian agriculture. Kim So-yun dash070@hanyang.ac.kr