Sunday, October 10, 2010


I was just about to go to bed when I found this post on Youtube from Dan (Savage) and Terry. It's a post from his "It Gets Better" project in which individuals from around the world share their personal stories (to young people who are struggling and closeted about their sexuality) that hope exists past the torment and the bullying that they are experiencing in school.

Those words still sting when I hear them, whether they are addressed to me or to someone else; however, I have learned how to handle and then discard them over time. When I was in elementary and high school, I was cut much deeper by those words, and the idea that life would get better was oftentimes very difficult to envision.
It's strange to be in a position where you're not sure why your speech, the way that you move - who you are - makes people upset. When you are told constantly by adults and the media , the government, people who you know, and those who you don't that who you are is not like everyone else, that who you are is abnormal, that who you are means that you have diminished rights and freedoms to live then it makes you believe that who you are, is alone. There was no support system available at home, or in school to help me deal with the harassment, but somehow I was able to endure and lift myself out of that place. My choice was to conform so that I would become invisible. I dressed like my abusers, walked like them, and spoke like them; safety for me was to blend in. And for over five years I did that, living in shame and in secret until I graduated from high school. It got better once I left my neighbourhood that I was raised in, once I started art college downtown, and once I began to see myself reflected in a community that was very similar to who I was. It helped me understand my worth, and that I wasn't alone.

I've been recently asked to participate in a comic book anthology along with about twenty other artists. It's still in its early stages of development, which means that I'm certain that I cannot divulge any information about it whatsoever, except that I've considered my contribution will stem from my experiences of coming to terms with my sexuality. At first, I decided that I would approach it in a more humourous way, but now after giving it some thought, and viewing some of the aforementioned posts on Youtube, I realized that part of the reason why I chose to "keep it light" was for the sake of others; because I thought that it would be more commercially palatable, and make people feel less uncomfortable. There is always this fear that if I use some personal stories from my life to inform my commercial work that it will inhibit the critic within me from doing his job properly in such a way that the overall design of that piece might become clouded by those feelings. It can be a tricky thing, but I believe that I've maintained enough distance from that period of my life to recount my story in a way that can blend both my personal and critical voice.


The Art of Michael said...



Saskia said...

Hi Marcos,

You are awesome! This is so beautiful and honest. I admire you, always have.


Marcos Chin said...

thanks michael.
thanks saskia.
happy you both read it :-)