Through portrait and cartoon illustrations alongside curated articles, In Between showcases musicians of the Asian diaspora across different genres and highlights their experiences in the industry. The title of the book was inspired by common feelings of “in betweenness” among members of the Asian diaspora caught between Western norms and ethnic roots, which can sometimes be expressed through our music tastes. Fun and playful design choices, particularly in the colour palette and illustration style, were purposefully employed to combat the often stereotypical assumptions of Asian individuals as being nerdy, serious, or solely focused on academics. The project also included a survey component, where members of the Asian diaspora were asked to share their music tastes and how representation within the industry impacts their own identities and feelings. The participants’ answers and stories are shared throughout the book, allowing readers to engage with perspectives of both musicians and listeners. Through the wide range of experiences and viewpoints shared from East, South, and Southeast Asian individuals, hopefully this project will allow you to discover new artists and also reflect on how representation in something as popular and widespread as the music industry can positively influence feelings of self-worth and belonging for many.
In my four years in the communication program, the biggest change I’ve seen in myself is that I’m now more comfortable with who I am and my own interests. Although I’m still sometimes self-conscious about my work and things that I create, I definitely feel like I’m more willing to put myself out there and embrace my personal style. I’m grateful that this program has allowed us to try out different aspects of the industry because it really helped me understand what my interests are and what I feel passionate about. I’ve found that if I’m working on something that I enjoy, I become more invested and produce work that I am proud of. Although my time at school is coming to an end, I still want to continue to learn from others and continue evolving!