“Generally I’m more interested in urban and street photography. Not necessarily photographing buildings and architecture, but I’m more drawn towards the people wandering around the city.”
Adam Chang (born in 1982) is a designer and photographer currently based in Brooklyn, NY (USA). He’s self-taught.
“Good can always be better.”
Interview with Adam Chang
What was your most memorable moment shooting pictures?
I went to Shanghai a couple of years ago by myself and it was my first time in that country. I speak a little Mandarin but I don’t read or write and this was right before the iPhone was big. So I really had no idea where I was going, I just spent a couple of days walking around everywhere looking for things to photograph and trying not to get too lost.
Why did you become a photographer?
I’m first a designer but I think photography has a lot to do with my work and the industry I’m in. So naturally, it’s just something I picked up and enjoy doing.
What does photography mean to you and what do you want to say with your pictures?
Photography to me means capturing moments and emotions.
Which photographer has inspired you most?
There’s so many great photographers out there that it’s hard to say and even keep up with.
What’s your favorite photography quote?
You’ve got to push yourself harder. You’ve got to start looking for pictures nobody else could take.
How would you describe your photographic language and creative process?
Generally I’m more interested in urban and street photography. Not necessarily photographing buildings and architecture, but I’m more drawn towards the people wandering around the city.
I don’t really have a process; I just walk around carrying my camera in my hand.
What’s important in order to develop an own photographic language?
It’s normal to be inspired by others and try to emulate them. But, I think the longer you shoot you will start to realize what your own style is and develop your own niche.
What do you consider to be the axis of your work – technically and conceptually?
Conceptually I think people and places. But to someone else who looks at my work, it could be something completely different.
As far as equipment goes, I’ve been stuck on my Canon 35mm L Lens. It’s not as versatile as a zoom but it makes you get closer to the subject your shooting or vice versa.
What qualities and characteristics does a good photographer need?
Just passion, everything else will come if your passionate about what you do.
What does a photo need to be a great photo in your eyes? Especially keeping in mind the over abundance of photographic imagery in today’s society.
I’ll be the first to admit that I am guilty of this, but with apps like Instagram, anyone can point their phone up towards the sky and photograph a building in New York and apply a filter. Is it cool? Yes. Is it original? No, and that answer is backed up by the thousands of same photo on Instagram.
I think what separates a good or cool photo from a great photo is the ability to capture a moment that’s not always there and may never happen at that particular time or place again.
Where do you draw inspiration from for your photographic projects?
Traveling to other countries for the first time is the most exciting thing to me. I just want to shoot everything when I’m there.
What kind of photography equipment and photographic supplies do you use?
What’s your favorite website about photography?
Does National Geographic count?
What photography book would you recommend?
I’m looking for book recommendations myself.
Which advice would you give someone who wants to become a (professional) photographer?
Lots of practice and don’t be afraid to experiment.
More about Adam Chang