Hello, I’m Fei!

Spring in Toronto! 🌸

I explore the successes of cities old and new through the lens of a sustainable and beautiful human existence on Earth. My main tool for exploration is through my writing and note-taking. Welcome to my home online.

MY BEST PIECES ON WRITING

MY BEST PIECES ON CITIES

Most of my writing is gathered here. Almost all of my initial writing happens off-site on Twitter and over at my newsletter:

How it began

You have an interesting point of view, Fei-Ling. Please do not stop exploring this in your work.

This was my Professor van Dam, leaving me with some parting words during a design crit. I don’t remember which project this was, or what class it was for. (And in hindsight I’m sure he gave a similar form of assurance to all his students!)

Younger me was very uncomfortable and awkward. But these words buoyed me in times where I questioned the validity of everything, in places where nothing made sense, and in situations where the whole system seemed to be working against me.

As such, my life has been a whole lot of collecting clues about how to get more comfortable in the life that I live. It started out with “how to fit in” i.e. blend in and be perceived as “normal”, which led to the hollow chambers of superficial values. This followed by a period of retreat into myself and what I felt was right for me. Then my questions led me back out again and to a wider societal context where I ask: what is the good life? How should we live in harmony with fellow humans and the environment that we form part of?

My primary methods of research are very akin to the philosophies of Find What Feels Good (Adriene Misher) and Spark Joy (Marie Kondo). What’s exciting is that I’ve been finding these clues here and there. First it was slow, and the signal weak. But the more I kept on looking and refining my sensibilities, the better I got at finding what felt right.

Thanks to Professor Van Dam, I’m starting to trust myself and the process of inquiry and insight.

How it’s going

Recently I’ve found a burst of energy to re-enter the domain of Urban Planning. To help guide me through the morass of dogma in the profession, I have found enormous solace in writing.

I’m a Write of Passage 7 alumnae and have been writing a weekly newsletter called Subject to Change since October 2021. These two things have been nothing short of life-changing.