I owe my lifelong love of painting to my ojichan and obaachan, who are both professional artists. Currently based in Seattle, I spent every other summer of my childhood visiting family in Kitakyushu, Japan, my mom's hometown. My favorite memories of that time are waking up before the sunrise to paint in the quiet stillness of their studio, surrounded by shelves of still life objects and art supplies. With the obvious language and distance barriers between us, painting helped me feel more connected to my heritage. I still see painting as a way to connect and am especially influenced by the feeling of nostalgia, even as I explore different subjects and styles.