stepping back

Posted in personal, work by Kevin Vu on November 12, 2009

lauren putting on makeup. santa fe, new mexico.
© kevin t vu

having a photographic vision is definitely something that i am consistently thinking of. and as i reflect more on it, i realize that my photographic vision comes from who i am as a person, and not who i am as a photographer.

by taking a step back, i am better able to look at myself comprehensively. the decisions on who i surround myself with, what foods i enjoy eating, what clothes i wear, what type of art i’m interested in, etc. all have an impact on who i am. and i ask myself, why do i wear those clothes, why do i hang out w/ those people, why do i eat what i eat, why do i like that genre of art? my answers define the quality of life that i live and in turn define the quality of imagery that i put out.

the food that i enjoy eating elicit an emotion from me. when i plow into a good bowl of soulful chicken soup, i’m instantly taken home. the clothes that i wear are clean, simple and classic, i try not to follow the short-term cultural trends.  i love the visceral despair, ecstasy and drama of a caravaggio painting.  my close friends are amazingly loyal, trustworthy and deeply passionate about life.  (the words in bold are parameters for my vision and my brand)

you have to take the step back and see what you are saying with your life, only then can you really say anything with your photography.  this is where i want my vision to be.  my vision is a record of how i live my life.  i only hope that i can refine my vision enough to run parallel w/ how i live life and vice versa.

“I remember one of my friends saying to me ‘oh yeah, you just went to ny, you got lucky right?  you just got lucky?’  and he’s a photographer too and that comment gets me! There’s no such thing as luck for a start, you create your own. i just thought, well, you could look at it that way, but it wasn’t and you should try it and see…  You gotta be passionate about what you do, you really do.  Cause people notice it.. and they respect it. Its a very powerful drive to have.  It makes you sleep well at night if you do stuff you’re happy with that you’re making and achieving.”

– ben watts


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