Love is a feeling that’s hard to define — so Andrew Hou found a charming way around having to define it.
The artist, who lives in Seoul, Korea, says he has never considered himself to be good with words, especially when it comes to expressing his feelings. That all became increasingly evident to him in 2010 when he was having a hard time communicating his feelings to his then-girlfriend (now wife!), Kate.
So he turned to what he knew best: art.
Andrew used doodling to find just the right thing to say.
“I was never good with words, so making silly, sappy doodles was my way to workaround the problem,” Andrew told Upworthy. “During work, I’d pretend to be working and create these tiny doodles and send [them] to her via the phone.”
Best text message ever? Possibly.
Andrew’s doodles started off as a personal project between him and Kate, but after a friend posted some of them on Twitter, he realized how much they resonated with complete strangers. He decided to share them more widely. And in 2011, HJ-Story was born.
HJ-Story, based off of Kate’s initials in Korean, is a series about the little moments of life and love.
The drawings reflect his relationship with Kate, but he hopes that they bring an extra bit of happiness to the world. Five years later, he’s still going strong with them.
Here are 17 drawings (out of many!) that show their story.
1. There are times they can’t be together.
2. And he’s really patient about it.
3. But sometimes he’s not so patient.
4. He always wants her to feel safe and protected.
5. She brings him to life at just the right moment…
6. …even when she can’t be there in person.
7. He appreciates their differences.
“I always try to not create an illustration just for the sake of making a regular update, but when an idea of a genuine moment or event or thought pops up, I try to draw it,” Andrew says.
8. Together, he knows they can make it through the big things.
9. But it’s the little ones that really get him through.
10. There are life’s proud moments.
11. And the overwhelming ones.
12. And the times he says the wrong things…
13. …and tries to make them right.
14. But at the end of the day, he always feels lucky.
15. It’s easy to forget that the little things matter a lot, like that time they saw the movie “Thor.”
16. Or for all the times she lets him think he can sing.
17. HJ-Story reminds us that love isn’t just one feeling or moment.
Andrew says he strives for HJ-Story to act as a reminder to both himself and Kate of the little events and memories during their years together and how they should always treasure and continue to remember the little moments of love.
Love is a collection of moments that grow over time.