Sly Jim: Avatar

I chose the glorious meme photo of Jim Halpert from the The Office because I think the picture encapsulates my personality. Jim sneakily watching from behind an office curtain is analogous to my introverted personality, as I am typically behind-the-scenes in social settings. I would say my introverted side, much more frequent than my extroverted half, is characterized by my tendencies to remain in the back of any place where there is unfamiliarity. If I am stuck in a setting of people I don’t know, I am usually the one checking his phone for the 5th in the same minute to see if I received a notification because I am dreadfully waiting… waiting….waiting…. to get sucked into a conversation that has been initiated by another person. Although my introverted self is common, I am strangely the most extroverted within my friends’ group when I am surrounded by the people I know. I like to mess with my friends, sometimes a little too much. I am not afraid to steer the conversation or sing out loud in the presence of my friends just to bring out a laugh. In this way, my behavior is also just like Jim’s mischievous grin.



This image is my name on a piece of abstract drawing of trees on a mountain. I modified the original color scheme to shades of blue and white to look like the colors Traditional Chinese Delft pottery. I modified the image this way because I felt that the background represents my culture’s traditional while the gray font represents a modern simplicity.


I photoshopped my own photo using the app MomentCam. I chose to photoshop my avatar like this because it both represents my personality and stands for some part of this class as well. And also, I think it is a fun photo. It has full contrast of colors, with red in the background and blue and brown in the foreground.

The little blue fox magician right next to me holds a knife in its hand, almost saying, “welcome to the show!” In my life, I enjoyed being on stages and throwing myself out there meeting all kinds of new people. I participated in a couple dramas and performances under the theatre lights in high school, and I believe these activities can show people who I am. I like to laugh, and I like to make people laugh, to entertain them, to make friends with them. When I was photoshopping this picture, I really enjoyed the curtain at the background because it connects to my past. I also love this avatar because in the picture the huge box with a spade sign on it to the left represents the challenges of this class. In the picture, I’m locked inside the box. It mirrors the breakout rooms that we often do in remote classes. The several knifes It specifically speaks to this first-year writing class because it pushes us to get out of our comfort zone, to deal with new challenges, and to always perform our best when we face the unknown.

At first, I did not know how to make this avatar at all because I did not know where and how to start. I think the topic was very broad, and later I find out that if we use our creativity and boldness to get things started. This project could be fairly straightforward.


I have always seen myself as a goofball, leader type. Thus, my attraction to Sokka, from “Avatar the Last Airbender,” begun. Sokka is a person trying to be a leader in an era where he is put at an obvious disadvantage; however, he overcomes it, despite not bending any elements. Despite his hardships, he grows to become a leader, who still tries to make people laugh at his dumb jokes. I used Sokka’s image as part of my avatar because I see a lot of myself in him.
Additionally, I added the New York Yankees hat because I grew up around baseball, especially the Yankees organization. Furthermore, I added the mask to show my current situation of coronavirus. Even though Sokka has a smile on his face, it is concealed by the required mask and necessary social distancing. I faced difficulties deciding how I wanted to depict myself to people, whether to show my goofier self or my more academic and formal self. I chose the former.


This is a picture of a banh mi sandwich, one of Vietnamese national dishes. I chose the banh mi to represent my site for two reasons.

First, I grew up eating it a lot. It reminds me of not only my literal home but also my elementary school, the road from home to school, my city, and my country as a whole. Banh mi is versatile. It can be a quick bite, or it can be served as a full meal. However, it almost never appears on the menus of high-end restaurants. It is casual and simple yet extremely unique. It mirrors my identity and personality.

Second, there are multiple layers in a banh mi sandwich, just like how multifaceted us humans are. A complete banh mi usually consists of pate, mayo, pickle radishes, cilantro, Vietnamese ham, grilled meats, and sometimes jalapeno, all pressed between a hot French baguette. From the outside, one can never tell what is inside a banh mi and can never expect what it would taste like. A banh mi hides its flavors and capabilities so well that makes it mysterious and ultimately desirable. This same principle applies to human beings. Our looks are deceiving. We are so much more than how we look. I believe that each of us is special and each holds so much potential that needs to be explored.



Image Courtesy: Adulting is Hard by Pinterest user Tee Turtle

I tried very hard to think of an avatar that would represent me. I thought of a couple of ideas, but I was not fully convinced about them. They didn’t feel like they were me.

So, partly out of frustration and partly out of amusement I decided to post an Instagram ‘close friend story’, asking those who know me best to describe me as a bunch of words or emoticons. This proved to be more insightful and helpful than I intentioned. The most common replies that came up were ‘sleepy’, ‘coffee’, and ‘lazy’. I also got ‘nerd’ a couple of times. I found this funny because these were contradicting each other: coffee is supposed to make you feel awake, not sleepy, and lazy and nerd have opposing implications too. I decided to combine these random aspects of my personality to create an avatar.

My avatar is a sloth (primarily known for slowness and overall laziness) who is cuddled into a blanket, drinking coffee– a visual that makes me smile just thinking about it. It is exactly what I do to relax in my free time. I added the spectacles to incorporate the ‘nerd’ part– a reputation I have falsely been awarded for studying too much. A small, possibly irrelevant detail that I really liked about this particular image is that the blanket looks exactly like the one I sleep with every night. I believe that this avatar truly represents me in my ‘natural habitat’.


I chose this image because it contradicts with classic social standards. For instance, the big eye and plummy lips represents the current judgement of beauty. Since I am a firm believer to uphold personal insights into society standards, I think it can represent me really well with this badge. There isn’t many difficulties except I had to learn distortion with photoshop. But overall the process was smooth. 


I think a chameleon best represents me and my abilities. A chameleon easily adapts to the color of the surroundings. A chameleon, whenever in danger, changes its color to adapt to its surroundings, thus, changing the outcome of what could have happened. The same way I like to think preemptively and solve problems. I think that I never waver from a difficult situation, instead I like to draw inspiration from people and things that are happening around me, in a similar way that a chameleon takes inspiration from its surroundings and changes its color, and creatively try to solve the problem, which I might not have if I did not imitate a chameleon.

I can be any color, but I now I am “Blue and Yellow”, and I couldn’t be prouder. Since, my admission to Emory, I think I have become more decisive.

Avatar Photo and Explanation

Photo Credit Hans Nater

I chose this photo of a line of trees for a number of reasons. Firstly, trees symbolize giving. From a scientific perspective, they provide oxygen and power our ecosystem. From a literature perspective, trees have long expressed wisdom and generosity, whether as Ents in Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings or as the tree in The Giving Tree (I confess, the latter of these two was low-hanging fruit, pun not intended). I think giving is an important aspect of being a member of society, and in many ways, trees anchor this sentiment. Secondly, trees offer a source of comfort in an ever-changing world. Most species live to one hundred years or less, with some notable exceptions being Giant Tortoises and certain Jellyfish, but many trees can live for thousands of years. Some trees that are alive today were around before Christianity and Buddhism. Acknowledging trees like these keeps me grounded, especially during times where it feels like the world is changing too much for my liking. Other mini-reasons I chose this photo are my interests in biology, science, and photography (somewhat). Finally, this particular photo is quite pretty. It reminds me of a joyous occasion I attended when I was very young, so nostalgia played a role in my choosing this photo as well.


This is the image that my cousin, who is major in art, created for me in her spare time. I chose this because of multiple reasons. First of all, the skills of my cousin are very exquisite that she painted the picture with matching color and great layout. The girl in the picture looks like me at some point. I am particularly interested in the style my cousin chose; the overall clothing seems very comfortable, which might be my pick. Secondly, I like the emotion behind the picture that this is a gift that one of my relatives gives to me. When creating this badge, I was having trouble uploading this picture clearly since I need to convert it from a paper version to digital version. With good lightning and technology, however, I successfully took the picture and uploaded it onto the website.