The Creation of Neon Owl

Written by K. Hempel 

Elaine Huang (Neon Owl)

Early in 2013 I met Elaine. Spunky, smiled a lot, had a rather worldly perspective and a sense of bravado…(I mean brave not arrogance.) From our first conversation there was something interesting about her, it was as if she was constantly thinking about the next step, her next action and where she was going. She introduced herself to me as soon as I walked into the room. With a huge smile she comforted but controlled the room. It is exciting, knowing what I know now. It was fate that connected us to be in the same room, at the same conference, feeling the same way…. There was something more. We had a great conversation that night and made plans to meet up and discuss business.

It took us over 7 months to finally set that meeting.

Looking back now I realized it was that meeting that put the wheels in motion to change our lives forever. We began working together in 2014 and quickly got off to a straight sprint on changing our mindset and truly following our passion and what we believe of this life. At first we would meet weekly and keep in touch. It seems now that was life’s natural way of getting us to understand each other at a rapid speed as life somehow knew we could not afford the option of “taking it slow.” As the year progressed we grew to be great friends as well as great working professionals. She had a lot to learn, but I quickly took to letting her know my crazy concepts and off the wall (sometime brash) thinking.

To My Surprise:

She accepted my process and seemed to find her way as well to achieve her dreams. I can say we were both going through a life change that was exciting. We each had our dreams, goals and storyboards that we were not going to ever let go of. But working together carved a piece out of the universe that aligned us to progressively and quickly reach our goals.

Elaine Rocking The Headphones








I am constantly impressed by the way she seems to “just do it.” Like I said before, it’s as if she knows exactly what she wants and she is going to grab it, strong arm it and pave her road ahead.  As I write she is counting down now to the huge kick off of her next adventure she creatively calls Neon Owl. With the colorful logo of a spiritual owl that symbolizes the real meaning of someones state of mind and strong intuition she plans on taking over the EDM scene with the help of her growing community, spreading the little things that create movements and change the world….belief, acceptance and passion. I got a chance to hear her story so here it is, enjoy!

Spunky Elaine has blossomed into a ferocious Passioneer, a true innovator and leader! The Creation of Neon Owl.

“I‘ve always loved music, but never knew that I could do anything with it.” Elaine Huang  

I’ve never been musically talented. Ever since I was young, I’ve always listened to all sorts of music. I started listening to the Chinese music my parents listened to. Later on in elementary and middle school, it was a lot of Backstreet Boys, Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Mariah Carey, Juvenile, and Lil Wayne. In middle school and high school, Eminem got me through some tough times. It was my escape. I would put on my headphones and my blue Sony CD player and have certain songs on repeat. It helped me channel a lot of anger and negative energy and it allowed me to transcribe them onto paper.raver

I actually wrote a lot as a kid, and even do now, often times that’s inspired or accompanied by music. Back then I would imagine myself in a different place and time and in a way it motivated me to get out of a certain situation, or strive to work towards a better future. It may be a little hard to picture me today being that girl, but I had a lot of resentment and anger when I was younger. I remember having a screen name “Eminemgurl” because he really did get me through a dark period of my life, and I still love his music and get inspired by it today. Somewhere along the line, whether it was my experiences, circumstances or mentality shift, it combined itself with music and my attitude shaped into a positive and motivating one.


Elaine in Neon Owl shirt
Elaine and Raymond from Neon Owl

My brother had always listened to a lot of electronic music, (back then it was considered to be trance or techno.) I didn’t start listening to a ton of that until a little bit later on in life. But the thing I really love about electronic music is that for the most part, it brings out a lot of positivity usually without too many words. It’s able to bring out a lot of different emotions. It’s able to make you cry. Make you smile. Get you pumped. Often times it takes me on a journey. That’s pretty powerful for something without very many lyrics. I’ve always liked it, but the moment that I absolutely fell in love with it and it really took over my life was the first time I experienced EDC.

I’ve experienced everything from pop, indie, to country concerts. This was something totally different. People there were carefree. They were bold, friendly, caring, loving, expressive, weird, and everything in between. It was as if all the cliques in high school from the popular kids and nerds to the outcasts all came together to the same place, and you couldn’t tell who was who, and nobody cared!

Everyone looked different, dressed different, tall, short, fat, skinny, none of that mattered. It was like this magical place that everyone co-existed in from different backgrounds, made whatever amount of money back home, had any occupation, looked however they looked, and still were respected and treated equally.

Everyone gave hugs, traded kandi, talked to one another, offered shoulder rides, and was just kind to one another. “That’s when I totally fell in love with the scene, and the music even more.” There’s not a ton of music out there that creates this type of environment. For those that don’t understand it and refuse to experience it, I’ve always highly encouraged them to try it at least once. For those who assume it’s all about the drugs, it’s not true.

EDC Circuit Grounds

If you kept an open mind to actually experience something like that, you’d realize that it’s really about the music, good vibes, peace, love, unity, and respect. It’s kind of emotional just thinking about it, but I wished that people treated each other like that a little more in everyday life.

Elaine with Communty 1
Neon Owl with SF Artist Helice Wen









For a lot of people, music and festivals are an escape. But it shouldn’t be that way. Festivals should be an experience, a great one, a reunion with old friends and a time to make new ones. But there’s no reason why we shouldn’t live everyday as if we’re at a festival. “Be bold, non-judgmental, caring, loving, giving, open, and free.” I think that’s what makes me to fall in love over and over again with electronic music, and the culture that it embodies.

I’ve always loved music, but was never musically talented.

So I never really gave pursuing something in the music industry a second thought. I’ve always been interested in people. I always strive to be the boldest version of myself, and inspire others to do the same. I’ve always wanted to help people, in ways big or small, and always thought that it was bullshit when people would tell me they’d help people “one day” when they’ve made it.

I believe that being the best version of you is to always be kind, whether that’s at a festival, on the street, or in everyday life. I believe that it’s being true to yourself, your passions, and your values. It’s constantly learning, growing, and challenging yourself. “It’s not being afraid to take risks.”

Community Neon Owl
Neon Owl Love with the Community in San Francisco CA 2015

The Community

Neon Owl is a community that connects people through music, passion, and giving back. We promote up and coming artists along with already established artists. We share good music and generate content with a refreshing twist. We do this with no drama and no gossip. We share the music while getting to know artists better as people, beyond just the art. It’s a place they come to share their stories, their struggle and challenges, and how they overcame them. Hopefully that inspires their fans and others to keep pursuing their dreams and their passions, or to take that first leap of faith.

Without risk, there are no rewards.

Once again, I’d love for music too not only “be” an escape, but an enhancement in life. “A motivating factor.” There’s too much content nowadays that’s just consumed to pass time, or for entertainment purposes. While that’s all fine and dandy, I’d love to bring a positive take into this. Artists are celebrities and role models, whether they think or not.

Elaine from Neon Owl with Andrew Rayel

A lot of DJs and producers are still in between that realm of “Am I a celebrity? Do people want to hear my story?” Usually their stories aren’t told unless they’ve really made it and become big. But it’s important! It’s not easy pursuing a career in music. People really relate to chasing dreams, sacrifices, challenges, and truly following your passions. As much as music can help impact someone’s life in a positive way, so can a story.

Right now we work with different charities. We’re small, so our reach is only so big, but that will never stop us from giving now. Of course we’d love to have a bigger reach, bigger audience, and more people spreading awareness along with the message. We’d love to reach more artists, spread the message at more events, and have a presence everywhere! Ultimately, we’d love to partner up with artists and fans to throw big charity events. Down the line, we’d even want to start our own charities.

So we would appreciate your help to spread the Neon Owl message, share the Neon Owl brand, and expand the community together. If it’s a shirt you want to rock, a donation you want to make, an interview you want to share, or just telling people about Neon Owl and what we are about, every bit counts. No action is ever too small for a good cause!

Honestly, this was just an idea that I came up with when I woke up one day. I was at a good job, making great money, and enjoying what I did. But I asked myself “What my true purpose was in life?” and “What my true passions were? I was able to answer with “music, people, adventure, experiences, and helping others.” Then I just packaged all of that into one, hence the birth of Neon Owl.


“It’s just a crazy, yet simple idea. It’s nothing you can touch but it’s something you can feel. I feel it, and people probably think I’m crazy. If I can inspire one person to feel the same and act upon that, then that’s one person’s life changed or made better. I’d love for people to connect with what I feel, and what music embodies, and use it to become a better version of themselves and then use that to help make this world a better place. It’s not always about the biggest significance or the biggest change. Sometimes change starts small, but I believe in the domino effect and the law of attraction. So I guess I’m a little crazy, but I believe that through music we can change the world.”

It might sound too good to be true, or too much like a dream. But when has it taken anything less than a crazy dream to make something extraordinary happen?

Elaine in the Bay Area enjoying some tunes and the world

That is it. That is Elaine and Neon Owl. That is everything that I have come to know of her, passionate, successful and a real believer of dreams coming true. It’s only been a couple years now since we have known each other and we are now moving in entirely different directions, but I know somewhere in the future our paths will cross, maybe standing on the stage of stardom or sulking in the tears of our sorrow, but wherever this adventure we call life takes us, I know I will be able to reach out for her inspiration and strength for support when needed. Thanks for the good times Elaine!

To the ones reading this go out and find your passion, live life, be you, be respectful and make sure you do it with love. #Youbetterbeliving. Drop the Armin beat!

If you’d like to find out more please visit the Neon Owl site to watch videos of artist interviews, as well as purchase swag for a good cause and support the community.

I Love You Because….


Screen Shot 2015-08-05 at 4.14.13 PM
The Hempels 2015

Four simple words that made the difference between racing down the path of relationship disaster or moving forward down the long dirt road of marriage. That’s what it took. It was over 3 years ago that I received this wonderful gift from my wife. I’ll never forget opening the present and seeing a blank slate picture frame that said “I love you because…” with a small infinity symbol of love on the bottom right corner. To be honest, I remember thinking  “I don’t get it.” “She gave me a picture frame for what?”…….say something quick I thought in my head……”I love it. It’s a cool frame!”

She said “You don’t know what it’s for do you?”

“Nope.” I said “Not a damn idea.”

I love you because
The secret of communication

She then went on to tell me she found the idea on Pinterest and thought it was “neat for us.” Since I was leaving to work early every day and going to school after and she didn’t want to talk to me via text message only. She thought it would be a good place for us to fill it out when we were not around each other, as a way to show each other we were thinking about the other. Now for some of you that don’t know my wife…..I introduce…..the secret behind my success. My wife Jenny.


Strong, honest, caring, loving, supportive, generous, #ourrock, intelligent….there isn’t enough space or time to be able to explain the different levels that Jenny is on. She is amazing. She has shown me what it’s like to be fearless and loving to no end. I’d give my life for her. Maybe like an idiot I don’t tell her enough but now she knows it. I’ve forever cemented it in the cosmos of our digital world.
When we started this adventure of life and marriage we were both in our early 20’s. No kids, nothing holding us down. Quickly we started to achieve the day to day success and failures that come with marriage, children and being a professional. It’s hard sometimes. It’s boring sometimes. Ok it’s damn right exhausting. This was our life. We were achieving our goals but not our dreams. Kind of stuck in a rut. Well along with that rut came minimal communication and low levels of togetherness. We had very little family around us so we looked towards our friends which I coined “The Village.” You know the group of people that keep us sane in this life.


Maui 2014

You see, this is what happens in relationships. Not just marriage. I’ve seen it in business and I’ve seen it in friends. Life gets in the way and then you stop the communication. This is the secret. This is what made her buy this for us. She knew since we couldn’t speak to each other all the time (mostly because of me) there had to be another way to get it done. There had to be another way for us to show each other that we still loved each other, still cared for each other and still thought about each other more than just being around each other. This was the way.

I Love You Because….

Did I tell you she was smart? Shhhh….Don’t tell her I told you that, she is intuitive as well. I have another secret……for the past eleven years we have not fought. We have had a minor bicker or spat but never an all out yelling match. I know this is an achievement in itself by the books and articles that I read that basically say “you must fight for what you believe and love.” That is one score I always mark as against us. I’m serious. We don’t fight. We don’t fight because we communicate. We enjoy each others company, we laugh, we respect life, we share emotions with each other. Which was hard for me because I wasn’t raised to “share emotions.” At least not the way that Jenny and I do.

Jenny enjoying the open ocean on “The Road To Hana”

You can tell, I appreciate her as well. She has given me more in this life than one person ever deserves. I am forever grateful for that. Even though it has been three years since I received this beautiful gift, we still fill it out. When we started, it was everyday, now it’s more like weekly. This is ok though, because we understand each others “love language” she knows what I need and I try my hardest to pay attention to what she needs. We fail sometimes but we help each other get back up.

Like I said before I’ve not only seen it in marriage, but in business and in friendships. Life is the journey, not the destination. In my eyes if all of our destinations are the same, then why would we allow ourselves to live in a chaotic journey? This is what I mean when I post #youbetterbeliving our destination is the same, there is not one person that can beat that. If you want to figure out a better journey, carry the secret of communication. Find the strength within you to figure it out, talk it out and make it happen. I’ll leave you with the lyrics from Jason Mraz’s hit song I’m Yours:

“Well, open up your mind and see like me,

Open up your plans and damn you’re free.

Look into your heart and you’ll find that the sky is yours.

So please don’t, please don’t, please don’t…

There’s no need to complicate.

‘Cause our time is short.
This oh, this oh, this is our fate.
I’m yours.”

To Jenny: “I love you because….I can see your beauty even with my eyes closed.”



The Bond Of A Sitter For Sisters



The summer has been too short but the memories you have created will long be remembered. We know you have made a beautiful impact on our girls over the past couple months and appreciate the love and care you have shown them. Thank you so much for taking them on the adventures this summer between swimming and hiking, to the park, to the library and out for ice cream they absolutely enjoyed it. Also thanks for just being there for them.

You are a great person and will do great things in this life!

At the beginning we didn’t know how they would do but with your open and free caregiving personality, they took to you as an older sister and you share a bond that we appreciate! We will miss you but are excited that you are following your dreams and headed back to school! Keep at it Teagan! Love The Hempels

The Hempels