Jiwoong Birthday 2018: Jiwoong The Gatekeeper

“Imagination is the gatekeeper of the human soul.”
Alister E. Mcgrath


I just came back from my Korea trip not long ago and came to a sudden realisation that Jiwoong’s (Taenggu’s oppa) birthday was coming soon. I was adjusting back to my life in Singapore and barely had time to draw anything special for him.

It was only until the day before his birthday, I found some time to do some simple edits to an image that seemed to be a game character which he posted on his instastory last year using a mobile app.

This image was taken from Jiwoong oppa’s instastory on 28th Nov 2017

My concept was for him to be the gatekeeper of my mind, guarding against any intruders with bad intentions from invading my space.

My mind is like the girl who is in her own garden that is vibrant and full of life. And I currently have Captain Jack Sparrow and Minion standing in as the guards to protect my mind garden.

These are displayed on my company office table to keep me company at work. 😆

But thinking about it again, would Jack Sparrow and minion make a good security guard, given their playful personalities? Are they trustworthy enough? Will they be able to defend my garden against negative forces? If not, then I would need someone like Jiwoong oppa to be the guardian of my mind as I feel that he’s someone reliable. That was why in my xmas card to him in 2016, I gave him the title of “Jiwoong the Guardian”. So, in this edit of mine, I added some gunfire to his image. I also added in some rockstar stickers because I could tell from his instagram that he likes listening to indie music a lot.

Actually before 2016, I never knew when his birthday was. But it was by fate in Jan 2016 that I happened to know when it was in a mystical way.

The following story was linked to the drawing I made for Sooyoung in FOR SOOYOUNG: OPEN MY EYES. On 5th January, during lunch, I was thinking about making a drawing for Sooyoung’s birthday. “But when is Sooyoung’s birthday?” I thought. My memory or intuition told me quickly that it is 10th February. But to confirm that this is true, I went back to my office and goggled for Sooyoung’s birthday, and yes, I was right! Then, strangely, I had a sudden thought about Jiwoong oppa. I started to worry, “What if I can’t google online for his birthday so easily, just like what I did for Sooyoung? What if I miss his birthday without knowing that it was his birthday? What if I would never know when his birthday is?…” I shoved my worries aside and went on to do my work.

Later that evening, I took a break from work and was browsing through my instagram. Mindlessly without thinking much, I went to Jiwoong’s instagram profile and opened to see his latest post on 4th January. And right there was a comment left by someone, presumably his friend, saying “생일축하해 (Happy Birthday)”.

What a coincidence! Earlier on, I was just worried about how to get information about his birthday and shortly after, the answer just came to me like this like magic! But it was still confusing – was his birthday on the 4th or 5th? 🤔 (the photo was posted on the 4th and I saw the comment on the 5th, and there was no information about the date on which this comment was left.)

As if Taenggu heard my doubts, the next day she posted the following photo to wish her brother happy birthday for the first time publicly on social media. In one of her hashtags #106, she clarified that his birthday is actually on 6th Jan.


Now that I’m consciously aware of the date of his birthday, there is no more excuse that I would miss his birthday without knowing right? ㅋㅋ

Once again, happy birthday Jiwoong oppa! 🎉🎉🎉 Rock on! 🤘

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