Hi, I’m Saeah. I was born in South Korea and immigrated to the United States when I was six years old. I moved around a lot as a kid and even more as an adult, so I’ve never had a good answer to the question, ‘Where are you from?’ Over the past five years, I’ve lived in six different countries. I like how it challenges my perspectives. Very few things are right or wrong – only different.
I was once a marine engineer. I focused on ship energy efficiency and later in maritime operations across Asia. But since 2015, I’ve slowly shifted to more creative pursuits and am now freelancing full-time.
I’m happiest when I’m learning and when I’m building something – turning an idea into something tangible and realized. And more than anything, I love storytelling — the stories behind the smiles on strangers’ faces, how songs are created, why a dog might be fearful. I pursue these stories because it strengthens my connection to the world. And in any moment, there are an infinite to pursue.
I love creating projects, and I’m an obsessive learner. Once I set my mind on something, it becomes a bit of an obsession for a while. I’m slowly making my way through the 1,001 Movies to Watch Before You Die (which is now 1,210 films) and The Criterion Collection. I studied engineering in undergrad — a seemingly more practical choice — but I probably should have pursued English literature. So now I’m giving myself an MFA by reading one short story, one poem, and one essay per day.
I use Ted Gioia’s The Jazz Standards: A Guide to the Repertoire to study jazz compositions and to learn the stories behind treasures like Mack the Knife and In a Sentimental Mood. I dive deep into people like Rachmaninoff and W.S. Merwin by reading and listening to their work, the work of those who influenced them and every biography I can get my hands on.
I have a long list of these types of projects, and already there are more than I can accomplish in a lifetime You can see what I’m working on here.
I learned to practice gratitude through photography. I can spend hours in a tiny area with my camera. There is always an abundance of things to see. I search for the unique…the imperfect. I study the intricacy of spider webs, the light that only exists in the precious moments before sunrise, and the delightful way birds interact with each other. And you can find this beauty everywhere if you take the time to look. Photography gave me that gift.
You can find my photography here, but my favorite series is The Art of Imperfection and Beauty in the Details – Insects. My photography has been featured in The Boston Globe, at Broke-Ass Stuart, and Mass WildLife.
I write at The Imperfectionist. It’s a very personal project on living more creatively. And I write about lots of others things here. You can find me on most social media platforms, but I’m not very active on them. I like email the most.
If you’d like to chat about commissioned work, a collaborative project, a freelance inquiry, a work trade, or if you want to say hello, please contact me. I always respond.