Much of what Taiwan-based artist Tung Li's minimalist and subtle work is a reflection of his experiences and emotions. Photography is not just an act of observation, it's a means to be more in tune with himself. In this interview, our featured newcomer opens up about how being introspective shapes up his images.
Please tell us something about yourself and what you do.
I'm now 24 years old and I'm from Tainan, Taiwan. I studied civil engineering in college and I got interested in photography two years ago. Since then, I've been using different film cameras to create visual art. Right now, I think of myself as an amateur artist. This year, I also attended Wonder Foto Day Taipei International Exhibition as one of the artists. Maybe, I will host my own exhibition at the end of this year.
For me, my creation is all talking about my life, my feelings about this world, and my pain deep down in my soul. I had been bullied when I was a kid for almost three years. Therefore, I got some depression problem from that experience. I have struggled with it for many years. That’s also why I call myself "Visual Wasted". It because I think anyone who wants to be different is all wasted part in the society.
I’m also a columnist and interviews newcomer visual artists in Taiwan.
How did you find the Community and who/what convinced you to join?
I saw it unexpectedly in an interview with my friend cmj. It was a surprise that the well-known enterprise Lomography has their own social network. Thus, I joined without any hesitation.
As you read the 10 Golden Rules of Lomography, what rule do you apply in your everyday life?
Of course, I have read the 10 Golden Rules of Lomography. I especially think that Rule No. 3 (Lomography is not an interference in your life, but part of it.) can be applied in my daily life, even throughout my lifetime. It kind of matches my thought of photographing, as I said, “If one day I can’t take photos anymore, I would rather die.”
In this digital age, why do you still shoot on film?
I think I’m kind of an old-fashioned guy. Also, I feel that digital photography cheapens my work. With film, every shot I take, every time I press the shutter, I can feel the weight of my soul. Yeah, I know this is really romanticism but I am not a realist.
Your favorite analogue camera as of the moment? Why?
I own a lot of film camera and my favorite partner is always changing. Recently, my favorite is Olympus 35 SPn. I'm fascinated by it.
What is the Lomography camera you’d want to have someday?
I hope one day I can buy a Lomo'Instant Wide Central Park for myself. I really want to try some experimental creation with it.
Any song, book, or movie you live by?
People are always changing, so do I. Therefore, in every different life stage, my favorite film, movie, and book are different, too. Right now, I mean maybe for these past months, these are my favorite.
Song: Created by an independent orchestra called Fool and Idiot 5 : 1 0 a.m.. You can listen to it here.
Movie: My love for almost three years is Begin Again. I love the music, the scenes, the acting, the storylines, and the choices that the character made.
Share your current favorite Lomograph, could be yours or a friend’s. Why is this your favorite?
I will shamelessly share my recently favorite work. It fully describes my feeling in this society as a freshman at work. We are all working to live not working for life. The cruel world just wants our soul to suffocate and become a mindless puppet.
Any Community member you look up to? If so, why him or her?
I’m still new to this community. Currently, I haven't met anyone I look up to yet.
What are you looking forward to in our Community?
I’m finding a place to let more people see my work. I just want to make sure I’m living, and find a reason to live on. Also, reduce the pain that I’m suffering.
Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us and welcome to the Lomography Community, Tung!
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