Every relationship begins with a good introduction

I was born and raised in a lesser-known city adjacent to San Francisco, California. I used to introduce Oakland as the home of the Golden State Warriors (basketball team) and Raiders (American football team) both of which have moved elsewhere. Following suit, I also moved out of Oakland at 16 to attend a small school in New England. However, my itch to explore past the borders of my hometown started long before that. This fundamental principle carries into everything I touch– pushing beyond the boundaries of common logic and into our limitless imaginations. Yet, it is all the more important to have a place to return to with open arms, which in my life has been my family, friends, and the many places (beyond Oakland) that I consider home. This too, is now the home of my creative work. So welcome, make yourself feel at home.

Photo of Claudia

The Embodiment of Many "Homes"

Oakland, California

Commonly regarded as a crime-filled city, Oakland tends to be overlooked for all its worth. It’s one of the most culturally diverse cities in the Bay Area and I’ve met some incredibly brilliant and creative people living in Oakland. Oakland serves as a humble reminder to look beyond the preconceived notions of a person or place.

Lake Merritt, Oakland, CA
Exeter, New Hampshire

The boarding school I attended in Exeter housed a community of strong intellectuals and even better people. This environment served as a breeding ground for my writing confidence and creativity and empowered me to believe wholeheartedly that my words have value.

Phillips Exeter Academy
Santa Barbara, California

I never imagined moving to Santa Barbara, nor did I ever intend to call it “home” at the end of my senior year of high school. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, I never got the chance to visit before declaring it as my next home. It would take 2 years of waiting before I stepped foot in Santa Barbara. My 3 years living in Santa Barbara affirm that with some courage and blind faith, I am capable of thriving even when life takes me down an unplanned path.

Sands Beach, Santa Barbara, CA
Seoul, South Korea

Piggybacking from my experience in Santa Barbara, I took another leap of faith to study abroad in Seoul, South Korea for 4 months. I found immediate comfort in a place that was completely foreign to me. Seoul is a place where I created lifelong friends and unforgettable memories, but more importantly, it showed me that the world is so much beyond my fingertips. There is much to learn and explore, and many more places that I can call home.

Rubber Duck Project Seoul 2022