Portrait of a Young Women, 2017 WMNYC

Street Photography Lately

#WMNYC With all the recent protests that have happened in the last week, I felt the need to do my part in documenting this moment in history. The last time I felt this way, and probably the last time I really shot straight photography, was when President Obama was first inaugurated in 2009. I was still a university student then, and I haven’t really thought about shooting street photography much since. Mary Ellen Mark used to describe street photography to me as like “Playing an instrument, if you don’t practice it, you’ll lose it.” So I was a little nervous …

An Asian man in a dark suit looking back into the camera while walking down a street. A group of the Asian man in white, walking the other way in the reflection.

Why I Make the Art I Do, and the Origins of the W.O.1

Reflection 2012 I’m part of a trend of young photographers such as: Brook Shaden, Erik Johansson and Casane, using photoshop to create surreal images. If I had to give myself a label, I’d call myself a “Neo-Photo Surrealist.” Because while I’m creating images in the tradition of the Surrealists photographers such as: Man Ray, Salvador Dali, Lee Miller and more recently Sandy Skoglund. I differ in my choice of tools, namely in my use of Photoshop. I strive to make work that strikes a delicate balance between beauty and heady. But I wasn’t always this way. To explain why, let …

A group of Asians in uniforms, standing on their head next to a graffiti wall at the Five Points in Queens, NY.

How Dance Influences My Art Part II

I’ve been a dancer much longer than I’ve been a photographer, so it’s probably no surprise that dance has had a profound influence on my creative process. This is part II of an essay dealing with the subject of how dance has influenced my art.   My experiences with dance has specifically had a deep impact over what I think GOOD art is. Some dancers have a very technical, but consistently clean style. But this requires an audience that knows the dance, in order to appreciate what these kinds of dancers are doing. Then there are some dancers who have …

Battle - Two groups of asian guys in black and white suits break dancing on the street Boston's in Bay Village.

How Dance Influences My Art Part I

Battle 2011   Over the holidays I got to catch up with some old friends, and reminisce about how we got to where we are now. One topic that was brought up is the influence of my dance experience on my artwork. I’ve been a dancer much longer than I’ve been a photographer, so it’s probably no surprise that dance has had a profound influence on my creative process. My earlier drafts of this post was too long for comfortable reading. So I’ve broken it up into two parts, starting with this post. One of the primary ways in which …

Screen shot of World of One featured on Peta Pixel

I Got Published On Peta Pixel!!!

I’m very excited to announce, I was published on Peta Pixel today!!! I was originally preparing a very different post on dance and creativity, but I think this news takes precedence! Peta Pixel is an online photo magazine that’s mostly geared towards photographers. But that’s also what makes this so rewarding. I’m a longtime fan of their work, having read articles about the latest gear/photo techniques on their site for years. It’s an amazing feeling to finally be able to contribute to this publication!! Come check it out! Just click on the image below to view the feature. Sign up …

White suited Asian guy sitting on some steps in the shade, surrounded by angry looking dark suited asian guys with red shoes.

World of One: Angry Calm – the Art of Cool

Angry Calm 2016 Giclée Image size (HxW): 24″ x 47 9/16” inches | Paper Size (HxW): 30″ x 53 9/16” | Edition of 5   What is the essence of cool? I’ve spent years of my life (some would say wasted), trying find the answer to this question. The art of cool of me however, has always eluded me. Growing up in the 90s, I thought parachute pants were cool (something my high school friends will never let me forget). I also spent the entirety of my 20s trying to “keep it real” maintaining a lifestyle befitting for a bohemian …

Shinobi No Kame - A group of dark suited Asian men standing on a roof, staring at an Asian man emerging in a white suit.

World of One: Shinobi No Kame

Shinobi No Kame 2016 Giclée Image size (HxW): 24″ x 40 7/16” inches | Paper Size (HxW): 30″ x 46 7/16” | Edition of 5 Shinobi No Kame is inspired by Ninja Turtles (my favorite tv show growing up), and by the legendary Life Magazine photographer Gordon Parks. Although the atmosphere of Shinobi No Kame is reminiscent of a generic comic book ambush scene. The composition is inspired by Gordon Parks’ iconic The Invisible Man collaboration with writer Ralph Ellison. Production Notes This shot was taken almost as an afterthought. This summer, I was obsessed with shooting a water balloon scene for …

An overheating Johnny in a dark suit, standing next to a door in rural Taiwan, with white suited Johnnys in the reflection behind him.

World of One: Citong

Citong 2016 Giclée Image size (HxW): 24” x 52 7/16” inches | Paper Size (HxW): 30” x 58 7/16” | Edition of 5   Citong is named after my father’s hometown, a small village in Taiwan’s rural southern countryside. This image was shot at my grandparents’ house. A place remarkably unchanged since I was last there nearly ten years ago. Though this picture is loaded with nostalgia for me personally, I think artistically it comes up a little short. Here are some thoughts on why that is so.   Production Notes From a technical standpoint, these were really difficult shooting conditions. …

Walking Narcissist - A man in a dark suit walking in the street, with a line of men in white suits reflected in a window, walking in the opposite direction.

Walking Narcissist

Walking Narcissist Walking Narcissist is about the process of introspection, of questioning who we are and who we want to be. Like my Narcissus before it, this image directly deals with what is perhaps the primary theme of World of One, how our identities are constructed.   Production Notes The composition and placement in of the figures in Walking Narcissist, combines themes from my previous works Reflection, and Diligentia II. Reflection was the first W.O.1 image I shot on film, but I was never happy with the way it came out (which is why I hardly ever show it). I thought the …

Silent Scream - A women dressed in black screaming, with a group of the same women dressed in white sitting gesturing for her silence.

Silent Scream

Silent Scream Silent Scream is the product of a collaboration with NYC based Hip Hop dancer/choreographer/actress Mayo Kinoshita. Mayo has a dizzying array of skills, and I felt really lucky to have her pose for my camera. Originally I had a more static and somber image in mind. However, once we started shooting, I was blown away by Mayo’s more dynamic take on the subject. This resulted in a much more fluid image, which I find easier on the eyes and more enjoyable to study in detail.   Artist Notes Silent Scream is about how we use seductive lies to …