Muses and Mystery

Ann is one of my closest friends in New York. Although she might look like a kpop star, she’s actually a doctor finishing her residency. So I basically never see her, because she’s usually too busy saving us from ourselves. So when she asked me to take her picture at the Brooklyn Botanical Garden last weekend, I jumped at the chance.

It’s been awhile since I’ve shot any portraiture – surreal or otherwise. Because I started a new labor intensive project in July that I’ve been too busy procrastinating on. So I haven’t been shooting all that much, and when I have, it’s generally been for something specific that I’ve planned out in detail. 

This was nothing like that.

This shoot was much more improvisational, just trying to make something beautiful in the moment. It reminded me of how good it feels to create for the sake of discovery. As opposed to trying to prove a point, or illustrate ideas, which is how I often feel when I’m planning my other work.

Not always, but definitely most of the time. I tend to like pictures that tell a story, or at least imply a narrative. It’s like knowing there’s a secret in the picture. Just knowing there’s a secret there, makes it interesting. Regardless of what the actual secret is. So I also tried to weave elements of that throughout this shoot. Adding bits of mystery and ambiguity here and there.

A big thank you to my friend and muse Ann for the inspiration! This is definitely one for the books.


  1. She must have been thrilled! She looks like a movie star! Beautiful, and thank you for sharing your thoughts on the shoot.

  2. Pingback:A Spring Story | Johnny Tang Photo

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.