Some reasons I don’t feel entirely comfortable identifying as LGBTQ+

1. Religion

I’m Buddhist, with a little bit of Taoism and some Chinese folk beliefs mixed in. I think I’m probably more religious than most people – after all, how many people legitimately considered becoming monks? Considering that mainstream western culture is extremely “secular” (most of you are extremely Christianized atheists, but that’s a different blog post entirely) and western LGBTQ+ culture is hyper-secular, I genuinely don’t feel that welcome.

2. Culture

I have no interest in trying to fit into Western culture any longer (this is also a different blog post. I have no interest in explaining it here). LGBTQ+ culture is…honestly, extremely Western. All those identities are Western ones! Those labels are all based off the Western conceptualizations and analyses of gender & sexuality.

Both my religion and my ethnicity heavily impact my understanding of who and what I am. I’m not “just” a man, I’m a Han Chinese Buddhist man. I know plenty of Westerners like to think that we’re all really the same, but that’s what happens when you’re part of the majority culture and never have to think consider anything outside of your bubble.

Honestly, it’s insulting. None of those things exist in isolation from each other! In fact, nothing exists in isolation from anything else. Things don’t happen in a vacuum.

3. Gender

I am not female or female-adjacent. Western culture is obsessed with controlling everyone they forcibly gender female, and I’m pleased to say that despite their best efforts at forcing the wrong gender on me, it didn’t take too well. I never considered myself female or a girl and genuinely don’t know why anyone would want to. I like being a man, especially one that isn’t beholden to Western norms. I think it’s pretty great.

Unfortunately, most queer spaces seem to be this weird woman+feminine nonbinary party where you have femininity forced onto you whether you like it or not…just like mainstream Western culture. I though this was supposed to be a space where people were free to be whatever they wanted instead of following the norm, hmm?

I know it’s TERF indoctrination and not all queer spaces are like that, but there’s enough of it to make me suspicious of all of them.

4. Sexuality

Western culture calls my sexuality aromantic asexual, which I like less and less the more I think about it. Aromantic asexual makes it seem like two different identities, whereas I see myself as having one that can’t be separated into two or more groups. This is an unpopular sentiment for reasons I genuinely don’t understand.

5. Relationships

In an ideal world, I’d be one of those hermit monks who lived in the middle of the desert and gave out advice to anyone who came by (yes, that is seriously my ideal lifestyle). But we don’t live in an ideal world and that can’t happen.

Having a romantic or sexual relationship has never crossed my mind unless I forced myself to think about it. It’s not something I’ve ever wanted for myself. I don’t know how to force myself to want a relationship, or to be attracted to someone, or want a family. It does not make sense to me.

And since having an LGBTQ+ identity is primarily based on the relationships you have with people, why bother trying to call myself one of them? It’s genuinely not useful for people who choose to live the kind of lifestyle I have.

Night (2019-11-29)

an acrylic painting of a green nebula with a mountain and trees in black in the foreground.
Finished 2019-11-29. Acrylic on acrylic paper.

Eighth acrylic painting! This originally started out as a yellow & green nebula/galaxy. I ended up not liking the yellow at all, so after I was done painting all the clouds, dust, & stars, I painted the painted the mountain over the yellow part. Then I painted some trees on the mountain to make it look less boring.

This is something I really like about acrylics. They paints are, for the most part, very opaque, and they dry quickly, so I don’t have to worry about smudging if I want to paint over an area.

According to my notes, this took about forty minutes in total. I haven’t done anything like it since, but I’d definitely like to revisit this concept at some point to see how much I’ve improved.

2021 Sailor Moon Fanart

In late March, I was playing with the palette generator on coolors.co. A couple of them seemed fairly Sailor Moon-themed, and I saved those palettes with the intention of drawing all the Sailor Senshi using those palettes.

20210428_sailormoon

I started with Sailor Moon, of course. This only took 1 hour to complete, likely because I wasn’t thinking about light sources, or shading, or highlights.

Then I moved on to Sailor Chibi Moon & Sailor Mercury. They also took 1 hour.

20210429_sailorchibimoon

20210430_sailormercury

I still feel like the palette I used for Mercury is too blue.

For Sailor Mars, I decided to do something a little different: no lines! I also used an actual reference for this one.

20210503_sailormars

Somehow, this didn’t end up taking too much longer than the previous three: one and a half hours, instead of one.

For Sailor Jupiter, I went back to lined artwork.

20210505_sailorjupiter

The colors in this particular palette remind me a lot of the colors in old comic books.

20210508_sailorvenus

For Venus, I actually could not figure out a way to draw her tiara that actually looked good. The solution: have her appear as she was first introduced: as the decoy princess.

That completed the inner senshi. Once I’d finished Venus, I started thinking that I was getting a bit uncreative. Limited palettes are pretty nice, but unless I wanted to draw the outer senshi like I did Mars, there wasn’t any way for me to add shadows or highlights.

As a result, the outer senshi are quite different in style: no limited palette, shadows and highlights, and (rather simple) backgrounds.

20210515_sailorsaturn

Saturn was the first I did in that style, and she turned out a lot better than the others, in my opinion.

20210517_sailoruranus

I wanted to do something more dramatic with Uranus, but I wasn’t sure if I wanted to draw her with her sword or if I wanted to draw her doing an attack. So, naturally, I did both.

20210520_sailorneptuneweb

I did the sketch for this one on paper (in my sketchbook). My pencil sketches usually turn out to be looser than my digital ones, and I think that helps during the inking stage.

I felt comfortable enough with this one to add highlights to Neptune’s hair. I’m so glad I did – it probably would have turned out to be a bit more boring if I hadn’t done that.

20210524_sailorpluto

The sketch for Pluto was also done in my sketchbook. I…actually have very little to say about this one. I feel like I didn’t do anything new here.