In a bid to connect to his beloved grandsons, a loving South Korean grandfather living in Brazil began learning how to use social media at age 75 to share his beautifully drawn art.
While he did struggle at first, granddad Chan Jae was able to master Instagram in no time, BBC reported. With the help of his wife and son, he began using his account to share photos of his drawings to his three grandchildren who are more than 11,000 miles away. Transforming Instagram as a storytelling tool, Chan Jae shares his hand-drawn images on his account, “Drawings for my Grandchildren.”
His son Ji Lee, a creative lead at Facebook (which owns Instagram), came up with the brilliant idea which not only allowed him to get in touch with his grandsons, but also led him to touch the lives of his more than 145,000 followers
Back in 1981, Chan Jae and his family emigrated from Seoul to Sao Paulo. When his children grew up and had families of their own, they eventually parted ways. Ji Lee moved to New York while his sister and her husband returned to Korea along with their two sons, who were very close to Chan Jae.
“My father was retired and spending time with my nephews, like driving them to school, was a huge part of his day. After they left, he had nothing to do and that scared my mother and me,” Lee was quoted as saying. “We were very worried that he would age quickly without having anything to do and would become depressed.”
According to Lee, he was only able to convince his father to draw for his grandchildren after two months of trying as he “hated learning new things.” Lee said that his father had drawn for him and his sister when they were kids and thought it would be a good idea to do the same for his grandchildren so they can stay in touch.
It’s the falling leaves season in Korea, right? It’s a beautiful season when many green leaves are changing their colors and in the end they become more beautiful than flowers. In Brazil, the purple and yellow flowers have gone and now it’s a summer time with lots of green. #drawing #watercolor #crepas #korea #leaves #colors #flowers #brazil Na Coreia agora é a estação das folhas. As folhas verdes se transformam num colorido fazendo da sua estação mais linda que a das flores. Aqui no Brasil as flores roxas e amarelas já caíram e estamos entrando no verão rico pelo verde de suas folhas. 한국은 단풍의 계절이지? 초록색 잎새들이 갖가지 색으로 변해 마침내 꽃보다 아름답다는 계절, 여기 브라질은 보라색 노란색 꽃들은 다 지고 푸른 잎이 무성한 여름으로 들어간다.
A photo posted by Chan Jae Lee (@drawings_for_my_grandchildren) on
“He hated the idea and just could not grasp the concept. He didn’t understand the purpose of why we wanted to share his art on Instagram but I was determined to teach him,” he said.
“But I sat down with him every day and at dinner one night, we had a conversation about drawing for my son. That was the turning point and eventually he became more receptive to learn.”
According to his Instagram account, while Chan Jae draws the pictures, his wife writes the short anecdotes that go with each in English and Portuguese. Admirers often leave comments of praise and support for the simple yet beautiful works of art inspired by one grandfather’s love for his grandchildren.