"Please don't see," digital art by Jaecadin
The internet is a wild, wild universe. Like the vast, endless grassy plains. Like the deepest, darkest, most dangerous part of the ocean. It's essentially another dimension of reality, a concept that has always fascinated me since the first day I could fathom worlds beyond our own.
I, however, couldn't have fathomed as a child who lived day to day with not much more than my books and drawings that I, myself could exist in a whole other universe - let alone as a whole other being.
It started with games; creating online characters to represent "myself," which were not actually me (if I were to put it in the simplest way possible), and then migrating into the realm of social media like Facebook, Instagram, and others far too many to list.
Admittedly, when I started using social media, I wasn't sure how to portray myself as "Aber," the me that my friends and family knew. Messaging people online was one thing - personal, much like writing a letter to someone but quicker. However, building my self-image on a social media page was an entirely different beast to tame. I didn't like the prospect of revealing my personal life as some people did. I didn't care to show off my face or physical self, either. I found, however, that I didn't need my social media to serve as a way to portray "myself." Many people began using social media to portray other characters that they would make or the fictional worlds they had built. I, too, could use it to build a world within the internet universe, made by me, sure, but not about me.
And thus, "Jaecadin" was born.
Yes, there is a myriad of implications, both positive and negative, when it comes to the internet and its future. People have written entire books speculating its future from the horrific, the utopian, to the mundane. But this isn't about the ethics of the internet as it may end up in the future or even how it is currently. This is about the entity "Jaecadin," what it is, and its place within the internet universe today.
You may know about the novel and webcomic I'm making, project Sooted Star - about the girl who accidentally goes through a portal after sleeping in a boat in the grassy plains, and then ends up in another universe. It involves "multidisciplinary world-building" - in other words, it includes visual arts such as character and environmental design. It has plenty of writing to it. It even has some music.
Character Sheet, digital art by Jaecadin
What better way to provide glimpses into the world of Sooted Star than on social media? The visual arts could easily be posted on places like Instagram. The music could be uploaded to places like YouTube. The writings could be placed on various sites at various lengths.
Sooted Star is a fairly coherent, multifaceted world, and could even become interactive if given the chance. Characters could be brought to life through "Jaecadin," almost like they are posting through a shared account. I'm going off on a tangent, though...
Although the name "Jaecadin" has other works to it, such as art commissions unrelated to the project Sooted Star, it has become the overarching "auteur" of this project. It isn't Aber, the person behind it, per se, even if some of Aber's thoughts shine through. It's more like a "brand" but without prioritizing the money. To those who are not as familiar with the internet and how social media personas work, "Jaecadin" could also be described as a pen name - but online.
"Jaecadin" is a little like a portal that gives the people in our world a glimpse of life in the world of Sooted Star.
If you're not convinced about "online personas" or this whole "social media" thing, that's okay. I'm not here to convince you that it's a good or bad thing. I'm just here to explain that the name "Jaecadin" as it exists in the internet universe is what it is: a "brand," a pen name, an "auteur" to represent a fictional world. It is run by Aber, but not about Aber.
It is a new being in another universe we are only just beginning to explore and understand, and I'm excited to find out how it will turn out.