State / Region
Landscape Architecture, Photography
I'm currently a student, pursuing landscape architecture at my university. I would love to and have been stepped/stepping out of my comfort zone to create new and unique content out of landscape architecture. I have been photographing the urban environment, streets during my travels in Vietnam, Bangkok & Hong Kong. I felt there is so much room for myself to learn and create unique and creative content.
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Our readers would love to get to know you more Yong. Tell us about yourself, what is unique about you?
I would not call myself a photographer (but this is the only option which describes be best, given the number of options I have, hah!) because I feel I'm not at that level yet, still learning and always learning. I'm a dude who loves to take a photo and connect with people. I'm very open to meeting new people from all walks of life. By meeting new people could open up one's perspective. Knowing different people's culture and lifestyle would allow me to see things 3 dimensionally and never take things for granted. People are my inspirations. I feel having good connections with people is very important.
Yong, what are your passion and aspiration in life? How did you start as a Photographer?
My passion and aspiration in life would be the people and friends whom I've met during my travels. They allow me to strive harder in life and create things which are out of the norm. I started as a designer during my secondary education where I was doing jewellery design. I wanted to try something new. I always had an eye for fashion, however, I chose to further my studies in Environment Design during my polytechnic education and further moving on to Landscape Architecture in my university. Besides just designing, photography was something which I had so much interest in. Given my character, love to meet new people. Photography & Socializing gel well together which make me who I am today trying to capture people in unique fashion pieces and create unique content.
Who is your inspiration in life Yong? How do you keep inspired?
I have many inspirations in life but if I only have to choose one it would be my dad. My dad forced me to pursue accounts during my secondary education. Which he felt it would be the safest choice in life & the future. I decided to break out of it because it wasn't something I like or love. I would end up hating in which I actually did. I chose to major in the Arts & Design field. Therefore, I'm always there trying to prove him wrong that there's actual market & people out there who actually has a passion for design. I get myself inspired by always having the thought of proving him wrong. This would keep me going in design.
We all make mistakes Yong, we wish we could take back. Please tell us about a time being a Photographer, you wish you’d handled a situation differently with a colleague.
Yong, when you’re working with a large number of clients, it’s tricky to deliver excellent service to them all. As a Photographer, how do you go about prioritizing your clients’ needs?
Please tell us, Yong, about a time you had to be very strategic in order to meet all your top priorities as a Photographer?
There was a time, recently back in Bangkok, Thailand. I had an idea of shooting a Thai fashion designer collection with a model in mind. It was my first time shooting a garment and portraits. I have to appear as professional as possible so I had to look into the concept of the garment and think of places to shoot in Bangkok. I am not Thai and finding a specific and good location which depicts best about the concept of his collection was a challenge. I had to come out with a strategic order of venue, a number of looks, time, makeup, mood board, poses and at the same time alias with the model and him.
Yong, please give us an example of a time when you were able to successfully persuade someone to see things your way at work.
There was a time, recently back in Bangkok, Thailand. I had an idea of shooting a Thai fashion designer collection with a model in mind. So I contacted him via Instagram direct message and asked if he was comfortable in loaning me his collection because I wanted to shoot something different which wasn't urban landscapes or street. He was all good about it & I was surprised that he even allowed me to do it because he knows that, first, I am not a professional fashion photographer, second, I have never ever shot portraits and lastly, I'm new to shooting garments & portraits. But he was so willing to give me his collection for a shoot. I even told him all of the above. His reply to me was, "it doesn't matter, I love what you are doing and your work (urban landscape & streetscape photos). Hearing this gave me a small glimpse of hope that there are actually people out there who appreciates what I do and what I show. This really motivates me a lot.
Yong, please tell us about your proudest professional accomplishment as a Photographer. There might be many, but there is always this proudest moment that you just want to share with everyone. What is it and why?
My proudest moment was getting to shoot this Thai designer collection. Takara Wong. His collection was based on Judas which gave me an idea of shooting in a church. I also did up a collateral for it. I chose the model, I came up with references images for the model to pose. I kinda almost did everything by myself and not forgetting it was my FIRST EVER, portrait (model) + fashion shoot I have ever done. It was shooting in another country which made it better. Knowing the environment and getting soak in the unique atmosphere was one in a million.
Yong, please give us an example of a time you were able to be creative with your work. What was exciting or difficult about it?
A time when I was in Hong Kong where I and my friend wanted to trek and shoot. We trek to find waterfalls and she was my willingness to be my model to shoot. She wasn't expecting anything from me but we both just wanted to have fun out in the sun and water. What was exciting for me was that she was the first whom was so comfortable with me shooting her in swimwear (bikini). Given the context where I am living in Singapore, it's tough to get someone to reveal so much skin for a shoot unless he/she is a very good friend of mine or I am paying him/her to do a shoot with me. If not it's nearly impossible. What was difficult was the light which plays a most important part of the picture. Trekking up in the forest where the tree canopy is huge, the amount of light was at its' minimum so sometimes we have to wait just to get enough light for a shoot. Framing a shot was tough as well because I had to deal with different textures of the landscapes. I wanted to find perfect textures of the plants and rocks for the picture. So the picture turns out well composed as possible, in terms of angle, framing, composition, light, colour and texture.
What advice would you give to the people who want to be successful as a Photographer?
Be bold & step out of the norm. Don't be afraid. Do what you really love. Slowly but surely we will achieve what we always wanted.
Are you looking for collaboration with fashion talents, brands and creatives? If yes, please state what type of collaboration you are looking for?
Definitely. I'm looking for brands & creatives collaboration. Maybe more towards, street style & soft nude.
Now for the best part Yong! Please upload 5-10 photos so we can get to see your work.
Photographer: Raymond Yong