I shot these while we were waiting for a model to meet up at this rooftop for a photoshoot, I used Fujifilm XT2 with 50mm 1.4 lens. I am still trying to figure out a better way for the self portrait set up for this camera, the remote assist through the app is not giving me enough control, so I need to play around with it more I think.
Towards the end of December I quit my day job to look for a one that wouldn't require it to be the front and center of my life, working nightshifts, weekends and holidays ~ In fact my job has been so demanding for the past two years that I was not able to look for a new job, until I finally quit and removed myself from it completeley and mentally and physically came to peace and in a healthy space to be able to search for other opportunities. Today almost a month and a half into the job hunting I was offered a new position with an agency that I was desiring, although my income is lower than my last job and I will have a longer distance to commute, I am able to trade it off for a normal work hours and stability. Looking back through the job search experience, the interview processes were draining like always and on top of that for every single job I had leveled up I had to take some sort of a test. For example for this position, aside from the interview I took a 45 minutes long writing test, not to mention three writing samples that I brought with me to the interview. However, through this experience I learned a little bit more to trust myself, was challenged to let go more of control, any expectations and move more with the flow that life brought my way.
My new motto is a quote by a Japanese author:
Let those who want to leave to leave, those who want to come to come and those who want to stay to stay.
Below are some shots that I took on Film Camera during our trip
One of my favorite movies is this 70s French film, part of Criterion Collection an experimental movie by a 25 year old female writer/director. The movie is about 3 and half hours long and was filmed in 5 weeks, depicting the daily routine of the main character a middle-aged widow living with her teenage son in an apartment who earns her income by prostitution. This movie was filmed with all female cast and crew and is noted to be one of the masterpiece for feminist movies although the director has been reluctant to the feminist labels claims.
At the time I watched this movie I was at a somewhat judgmental mindset about people's choices in life and I credit my mental growth and metamorphism into liberation from those thought to this film. Watching the scenes I could relate with the character as she took care of her house and her child just as any respectable women would. At times the movie could feel boring as bulk of it is watching the main character performing mundane chores with details around the house day after day. Camera often times show her day dreaming without exploring what those dreams are where you are only left with the facts as they fold through the frame, she is a hardworking respectable women.
It is only towards the second half of the movie that I realized her means of income is through prostitution, meeting her client in the evenings in her bedroom (the duration of such events are never shows on the film). At that point the question is whether her being a sex worker had any change in how one would perceive her as a human being? even bigger question why would it? and that who are we to judge her and her decisions in earning an income. We know nothing of her history and past and all we are left with knowing she is caring for her son just as any other women on the planet and being a citizen respecting all the rules and regulations set by her society and not harming or stealing. This movie thought me to accept and respect people as they are and that we are equal in our process of developing to be the best version of ourselves, because we are all trying the best we can and not one of us is ahead of others in the journey of reaching enlightenment in this life.
Photo Credit: jyangphoto.com
This is the new set up for Josh's camera, he recently moved to 85mm lens and asked me to be his test subject. I absolutely love the bokeh this lens provides, how it separates the subject from the background. We shot these images in back a coffeeshop building at sunset time, surprisingly for a winter the weather has been so nice that I could be in a skirt and without a heavy jacket.
Uncommon Objects which is a well known antique shop in Austin, hosted a pop-up flea market in their backyard for Christmas bazaar, these images are from our visit. the images above is what Josh took on his film camera and the ones below are on my Fujifilm XT2 on 50mm 1.4 lens. This Christmas Josh gifted me this generous gift of this lens and I couldn't be any more grateful to him. I have been using a 50mm 1.4 Nikon lens with an adaptor with it, but it was not an auto-focus lens and made it very difficult to shoot for professional work or even out and about because the focus would be all over the place if I didn't pay extra attention which took fun out of the actual shooting process.
I absolutely love Toy Poodles, before I met them I have never cared about the pet breads. I used to think caring about a dog bread is the silliest thing, let alone to shop one, while there are many abandoned dogs waiting to be adopted at the shelters. It was not until I met these toy poodles that turned my heart and soul around. These dogs are not only hypoallergenic, won't shed, super smart, very affectionate and cuddly and they hardly ever bark. In fact I love them so much that I have been in a search for adopting more for the past 2 years at the shelter sadly I have not been successful. The only and the biggest issue I see with them is their bad teeth - poor Chien Chien is having almost rotten teeth and one is almost loose and we worry of the may have caused infection so we are in the process of making appointment to take them out. It breaks my heart because she doesn't have that many teeth left in her mouth as is, in the next month we will find out more.
Josh took these images on an expired film that his grandmother gave him on his last trip to Lost Angeles. I absolutely love the color and tons of these picture, it is such a beautiful surprise, previously the film that I have seen expired had a pink or red tone but I am not sure how these turned darker shade of yellow. We shot these on a Sunday walking to a coffeeshop at sunset time, this winter has been very stressful because of my job I found myself thinking about work around the clock and spending even weekends and after hours working to make deadlines so after this shoot I worked on woke deadlines till late at night - Sadly I did not get a chance to prepare for Christmas and the holidays this year as much I wanted to.
Photo Credit: Self-portrait with Tripod
This year the winter has been wonderful, it is not the cold that gets to me, but more the lack of sun. This years has been one of the sunniest weather and there is a nice balance between super cold days and 70 degree weather so I am a very happy girl! I took these self portrait on a tripod in our neighborhood park - I remember the weather had just started to get chilly in late November and I was so excited to feel the chilly weather and wear layers and warmer clothes.
I found this documentary [What Remains] about a contemporary Photogrpaher Sallly Mann absolutely fascinating. While her choice of camera is a large format and black and white film, she prefers to shoot where she lives in a ranch in Lexington, VA with her family. What I found interesting about her work is that unlike some photographers she chose not to travel to exotic places, but to capture life as it happens around her. It was in fact the portrait photography of her children while playing about that got her the public fame, I believe she made a book of that portrait series however because some of these photos involved child nudity she faced with heavy criticism for exposing her children and making financial gain from them. That controversy aside I find her portrait work absolutely stunning, and her work has definitely made an impact on me to see and capture the world around me with a different outlook and to connect with life and time as it passes from a different prospective.