Was just looking at my old webcomic that I made in 2009 about a Korean “gangster” player guy named Kim and a nerdy innocent introverted girl called Demi. Demi ends up crushing on Kim who has a split personality, also a compulsive liar and a gang member. I’m thinking about redrawing it. Cos’ I feel guilty for not finishing it. Although, I wrote in the comments section that the story was based on an experience I had in college but I cant remember what exactly happened anymore.
Its interesting looking back at it now I see that it was full of all my fears and angsts I had at the time about growing up. I think I was around the age of 16-17 when I first started making it. I was at that age where it was normal for young teens to start dating, wear the latest fashion trends etc. Yet at the time I was very much into my books but I did feel pressure to fit in with the others. There’s a scene in Head over Heart where Demi greets Kim who is also hanging around with this other girl. The girl dislikes Demi automatically and asks Kim why he is interested in a “plain girl.” This somewhat knocks Demi’s confidence but she tries to hide it. (Also before this some of Kim’s friend called Demi ugly! Ouch!) Later Demi is on her way home and sees some guys flirting with some girls out in the street:
Then later she goes home and thinks about what happened earlier in college:
Then coincidently she makes a change in her dress style.
And her friends seem to like it too!
Though her friend (May) the one with the long hair can see through the matter better. The other friend Liane is more obsessed with looking attractive and funny enough Liane reminds me of a few women I know in real life who have put constant pressure on me over the years to dress more attractively. Attractively to them means “girly” and “feminine.” And its views like that, that have put me through some constant forms of gender dyshoria over the years. (I now identify with bi-gender.) A woman’s value is not in how she dresses. I believe this completely but some people seem to think otherwise. And for a while, whilst I was a young teen I used to believe that fashion is all that mattered, the only way to get a “guy.” And funny enough at the time it was.
I was rejected by one guy for not dressing feminine enough, the guy Kim choi was based on. The guy literally had a go at me for not dressing girly enough/like a girl. After this experience it took me a long time to realize that I was attracted to the wrong sort of guy to begin with and that not all guys are like this.
Must say Its really difficult to live in a world that seems to be doing everything it can to not let you be yourself. And around that time I was drawing head over heart I was very confused so drawing my experiences was pretty much therapy for me. I laugh now cos I can see that in some ways I’m still alot like Demi. But now I’m just more clued up on the world around me and ten times more stubborn. I’ve found that its better to not let people’s opinions influence you to do or wear things you are not comfortable with.
Words can hurt…especially when its coming from a friend you thought cared about you….
Head over heart isn’t such a bad comic, when I look back. I can’t really criticize it so much since I know the reason why I created it. It was to help me make sense of the craziness around me at the time. At least I can say I finally know who I am, I am solid.
Hopefully one day I will redraw Head over heart with a different storyline, art and perspective. I like the characters so want to keep them! Btw in case you are wondering how the story ends, Demi was never meant to end up with Kim. The plan was to make it a tragic love story, where the girl doesn’t get the guy in the end unlike in most other romantic manga dramas. But Demi was supposed to become more confident and beautiful in the end! 🙂
Note: sorry for any errors/typos.