Decisions made by the subconscious

Wong Kei Ying  is a student from Hong Kong studying communication design. She goes to school by bus. She only uses analog cameras and likes the underground scene. 


How did you start with photography?

When i was 14, me and my friend Fat Dog learned of the existence of toy film cameras, and it sounded quite hipster to us, so we bought ourselves a Holga on yahoo and played with it. But i did not spend too much money on it until university where i had photography lessons. Since then i have been taking photos more intensively, lavishly, now I’m so bankrupted.


What kind of things inspire you?

Not very sure, actually I’m quite uninspired. I’m a shallow person, sometimes i think I’m stealing stories from others by taking photos of them, from people around me and that i took advantage of them.


What does photography mean to you?

I always have some illusions, images or imaginary scenes inside my head and I want to physicalize them instead of just cage them inside my head. I think taking photos is the means I chose to make my illusions real.  I see all my photos as self portraits. So I believe the capturing decisions are made by my subconsciousness. My subconsciousness helps me to spot the scenes that could match with the illusions in my head. When I’m taking photos I’m actually finding the flesh, the body for my illusions.


 What kind of cameras do you like to use?

Film cameras, its slow, uncertain, and I’m too nostalgic to leave analogue photography.

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Do you prefer to photograph friends or strangers and why? 

I love both, but i take photos of my friends more often. Sometimes i try to take photos of strangers without them noticing, but some actually feel comfortable to be photographed by strangers (or maybe they were too drunk to care?), some of them even posed in front of the camera when they found me taking photos. I panic when i approach strangers. Yesterday i went to gay bars with my friends because i would like to take photos of homosexuals for my project. I was super nervous because i have never done this before. Then, i met really great people. Most of them were extremely friendly and nice to talk to. They were willing to help me despite my bad skill of presenting my ideas. Some of them even introduce their friends to me.


How do your surroundings and your city influence your work?

My surroundings makes my emotions and they make photos. Hong Kong is quite a tiring city, everything is in such a rush, i can get very annoyed by the speed, i am impatient, blundering. i don’t have a peaceful mind, so i see no sense of tranquility in most of the photos.

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