"Film photography is real and authentic, and that’s exactly how I want to be about my music as well." Inch Chua is one of Singapore’s most prominent indie singer-songwriters, did you also know that she's a big analogue fan? Let's get to know Inch better, check out her Fisheye photos and follow her analogue journey!
Name: Inch Chua
Occupation: Singer / Songwriter
Location: Singapore / Los Angeles
Could you tell us more about yourself?
Hi I’m Inch Chua, I’m a singer songwriter and I love rock music. I also like long walks on the beach, and my favourite word is Medulah Ablangatah, which is a part of the human brain.
I love Lomography, I picked it up 4 years ago. I like to collect vintage cameras, I have some cameras that are passed down from family and some from garage sales. I don’t even use some of the cameras – they’re for display only!
I’m a very big analogue fan. It took me a while before I even started trying digital – for some reason my family just continued shooting with film. We have a digital camera but we used film more often!
When I used to blog in the past, I would always use photos taken with my Lomography cameras.
How do you feel when shooting with an analogue camera?
Way more careful! I have more faith in my work when it’s on film rather than digital, I know that my pictures are going to turn out warmer and have more depth. When I shoot analogue, I feel that the moment is captured even more so than on digital. I like to plan my shots – every piece feels like a work of art. There’s a sort of sacredness with analogue that I respect.
You sound like a very serious photographer!
No! I just love shooting people and waiting for a certain moment. Being able to find a right time to capture the right moment.
Can you share with us some tips to take great photos?
I’m not an expert, but here’s a very important one. Always keep your fingers away from the flash! It’s happened a couple of times to me, and I’m like… “really smart, Inch!”
And use your film wisely. Some people shoot as they please and some like to plan everything out beforehand – perhaps we should try mixing it up sometimes and trying both approaches!
How was your experience with the Fisheye? What is your favourite thing about the camera?
I’ve had the Fisheye for a long time, it was a gift from a friend and it was the camera that started it all for me! That was in 2005. I like that the Fisheye can make anything look good.
One of my favourite photos is a photo I took of my bedroom. While lying in bed one day, I was thinking about how it was so much more than a bedroom to me. After all, it’s where I make my music. I wanted to capture that meaning. With the Fisheye, it captured the exact perspective of where I would lie in my bed and I could see my whole room. It’s my favourite photo to date. My first album was coincidentally called The Bedroom – this shot pretty much summed it all up for me.
If you could present the Fisheye to anyone in your life, who would it be and why?
My future kids! Pass it down, this will stay forever and film is forever.
Do you think there’s any aspects of analogue photography that you can relate to your everyday life as a songwriter and musician?
I’m getting a little philosophical here –you get the film images by exposing light to it, and with film photography and music, every moment you’re shedding light into your life and time freezes for a while. I like the concept that you have to expose the film, and you can think of it as “exposing” your life as well.
When it comes to my music, it reminds me to treasure all that I have. The power of a film photograph is that I know I captured a genuine moment in time. It’s real and authentic, and that’s exactly how I want to be about my music as well.
Who are some of the artists that you look up to?
I love photographers like Chuck Close. Music wise – flavor of the week right now is Reggie Watts who’s a comedian / musician! Brilliant, intelligent and funny. You gotta go Google him!
What are the best bits about being a musician in Singapore?
There’s a great community of other musicians in Singapore who believe exactly the same things as you. They go through the same pains as you! This applies to everywhere around the world too.
What’s next for Inch Chua?
I’ve got a new album coming up called The Colour Wheel. I’m also touring around Los Angeles and playing in some music festivals like SXSW 2012 in Canada and Canadian Music Week 2012. I’m also in a musical, got lots lined up for the next few months!
Check out some of Inch Chua’s songs!
You can listen to more of Inch Chua’s music at her YouTube channel.
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