Yung Hua Chen is an immensely talented photographer and visual artist hailing form Taipei, Taiwan. Her work, mainly composed of emotive self portraits and sublime pictures of her friends, often plays with light and shadows and the female sense of beauty and form.
Is it easier to photograph yourself or to photograph other people?
I think both are the same. They can be difficult but can also be very easy, depending on my interactions with people, my own emotions or my health state on the photographing day etc.
Does your experience as a model influence your view as a photographer? How?
As I have photographed myself and have been photographed by others too, I can understand better the character’s inner state during the photographing and also know how to capture and project the feeling in front of the lens. Thus when I take picture of other models, I am able to induce and release their emotions.
You usually shoot girls. Why is that? Is this a conscious choice or just happens?
Maybe because I am a girl myself, I know the tenderness of girls and the sense of beauty they hope to express. Nevertheless, I am obsessed with the mature and feminine characteristics of women.
Actually I didn’t think too much when I started figure photography. As most of my model friends are girls, I started with photographing girls naturally.
What are your influences and inspirations as a photographer?
My father is a fan of photography. I remember that when I was young, my father often took me to photograph special street elements along streets and alleyways in Taipei City with my small digital camera, such as some unique views formed by the special lines on the walls and changes of light and shadows on the road. In senior high school I completely stopped photography and only restarted it in college. I didn’t want to be a photographer actually. I am just interested in people’s particular manner and contour and obsessed with the flow of light and shadow.
What was the most difficult shoot you have ever done? What problems did you come across?
There is a deep gap of communication with clients who don’t respect photography as a profession during the photographing process. We have to be patient and spend more time on communication and think of their perspectives to achieve the best photographing effect that meets their expectations. Even if they are still unsatisfied in the end, at least we have tried hard. Everyone has their own aesthetic view anyway.
Is there something you would never agree to photograph?
I don’t have the heart to photograph those who are constraint by their illness from expressing their feeling. This is perhaps because I once had heart surgery when I was in senior high school, which made me especially understand how it feels when we are not able to express our will.