Green


I feel like I’m a dark green. I feel that it symbolizes patience. It isn’t a warm color, but it is rich and full of life. I don’t think I am a very warm person, but I am full of life.

참 오랜만에 만난 Vivi. 10년전에, 대학교 1학년때인가 처음 만나고 다시 만난 우리. 큰 변화 없이 둘다 한결같은 모습임을 느꼈다. 그녀는 그녀의 모습을 보기 위해, 나는 나의 특별한 포트폴리오를 담기 위해, 서로 돕기 위해 다시 만나서 참 설레고 기대되었다. 촬영을 결정하기 전에 잠깐 문자를 주고 받았는데 청각장애인들을 돕고 싶어서 청각학을 공부하고 있다는 이야기를 했다. 수화를 배우고 나서 관심이 생겼다는 말을 했는데, 참 유니크한 그녀의 이야기를 담고 싶다는 마음이 들어서 결정을 했다. 그리고 기대한것 처럼, 그녀는 인터뷰에 그녀의 많은 것을 쏟아주었다. 쏟아준 만큼 나는 촬영 준비가 너무 쉬웠고 순조로웠다. 10년만에 본 내게, 흔쾌히 그녀의 이야기를 열어주어서 새삼 고마웠다.


I haven't seen Vivi in ten years, and surprisingly, we both seemed the same as we met again for this creative collaboration. Just a bit older, we were grown mature to help and support eachother's important values and special portfolio. As I got to text with her shortly through Social Media it didn't take long for me to decide to capture her. The fact that she was studying audiology to help people with hearing loss and her recent short hair had to mean something in her life and her inner beauty. Just as I expected, the interview she sent me was very deep just as she chose her favorite color dark green. It really actually was a spontaneous shoot because it all happed in a week or so, but I believe it was a meant to be.

Audiology


In high school, I took sign language with one of my favorite teachers. I quickly fell in love with this “manual language” and wanted to be a bigger part of the community. It isn’t that I wanted to be in audiology because I wanted to “fix” the deaf and hard of hearing. I wanted to be an audiologist, a person that many deaf individuals have to go see, and be someone that actually knows their language. How amazing would it be for them to be able to go see a doctor that they have to see for medical reasons and not have to bring a translator. There is such a large issue of audiologists who don’t know sign language and it is such a huge part of the population that we serve.


I’m just imagining my mother before she learned how to speak english fluently, having to go to an english doctor and not understanding completely what was wrong and how to fix it. It would just be better if healthcare could be more accessible for all.

그녀는 청각 장애인들을 돕고 싶은 마음을 마치 본인의 어머니가 이민자라서 영어가 어려운 데 병원을 가는 불편함을 덜어주는것과도 같다고 이야기 했다. 들리지 않는데 본인의 언어, 수화를 하지 못하는 의사에게 가서 본인의 문제와 아픔을 열심히 호소한다 한들 얼마나 전달이 될까. 그리고 그녀는 그러한 비슷한 문제를 늘 겪었던 이민자 부모의 삶을 얼마나 많이 보며 불편함을 느꼈을까. 그 불편함을 직접 수화를 배우고, 공부를 해서, 많은 사람들에게 직접적인 그들만의 언어로 도움을 주고싶어하는 마음이 참 가치 있는 추구라고 생각이 들었다. 그래서 그녀의 손을 꼭 찍고 싶었고, 그녀가 만드는 수화를 보고 싶었다.

Breath of Emotions


I do think that I am very patient with other people. Or at the very least, I give people multiple chances and the opportunity to try again. I have always been the most patient with my family and I feel that it is a core part of who I am today.


I also believe that I am very empathetic. I cry very easily and quite often, but not always because I’m sad. It can be because I feel an overwhelming amount of pride or an overwhelming amount of joy. It can be pain and sadness, but really any amount of strong feelings, negative or positive can bring tears to my eyes. I used to really suppress this part of myself a lot. I hated to cry in any situation so I very easily would make myself more devoid of emotion to avoid this. But now I feel that it is such a beautiful part of who I am, I fully embrace it. Emotions are beautiful and I should express them.

Burst of Emotions. 그녀의 촬영을 준비하면서 가장 많이 떠오른 단어이다. 하얗고 풍성한 안개꽃이 만개하는 공중 Installation이 참 잘 어울릴것 같다는 생각이 인터뷰 답변들을 듣자마자 번뜩 들었다. 꼭 슬퍼서만 우는것이 아니라, 기뻐서, 혹은 본인의 연약한 모습이 벅차서, 여러 감정이 만들어내는 눈물들. 나는 그것이 그녀에게 그녀 자체가 되었다는 마지막 말이 참 와닿았다. 나의 약점이라고 생각했던 부분을 안아주는 스스로의 모습. 그녀는 본인이 사실은 자신감이 없는 편이라고 했지만 이렇게 스스로를 안아주고 있다는것 만으로, 본인을 사랑하는 첫 단계에 잘 오르고 있다는 확신이 들었다.


Her favorite flowers(plant) were Baby's breath and Eucalyptus. Probably the easiest flowers I ever got for any of my photoshoots. This answer was the strongest that remained in my mind that motivated me to create the set. The burst of emotions really made me draw a picture in my mind of baby's breath air installations like balls. Maybe because it echoed with me the most, as I was similar to her, but now I think it is an advantage to be someone so expressive and knows how to let go of the tears regularly, because I believe tears is another language of speaking. The floral installations metaphor her tears of joy, sadness, and other emotions that are necessary to her.

The time of passing


The most amount of feedback I have ever received from supervisors, friends, and lovers is that I need to have more confidence in myself. Not in the way where I am insecure in my body or how I present physically to the world, but rather the way that I think of myself and carry myself in a room. I am very self deprecating. I don’t often feel like I am proud of myself or that I am competent in my skills or that I am even doing a “good” job in life. I feel that I am always subpar and that I could always do better. If I could change my confidence or my perception of myself instantaneously, I would.


I am trying to work on it, but it is very difficult for me. As far as things that I wish I could change but I cannot, I don’t focus on those at all. I don’t think that we should focus on parts of ourselves that we dislike but cannot change. If we feel bad about something that we cannot change, then it is perhaps societies’ fault and not our own.

그녀는 낮은 자존감, 스스로에 대한 자신감이 없음에 대해 솔직하게 얘기했다. 그리고 본인을 바라보는 스스로의 시각도 바꾸기 위해 노력하고 있다고, 그러나 참 매우 어렵다고 솔직하게 털어 놓았다. 그것이 좋았다. 본인의 현재를 아무런 꾸밈없이 말할수 있는것. 아마 그녀의 현재가 좋았더라도 그녀는 같은 덤덤한 태도로 말했을것같은 생각이 든다. 그러나 그 감동은 같지 않았을까. 본인의 현재를 지각하고, 말할수 있으며, 그것이 본인만의 싸움임을 표현할수 있는 모습이 멋지다고 생각했다. 나는 어떤 사람이 지금 되었고, 무엇을 이루었으며, 라는 '이미 완벽하게 끝난' 것들로 나를 치장하는 현대사회 속에서, 참 빛날 만한 가치라고 생각이 들어서일까, 그녀의 이 질문에 대한 답변도 기억에 참 많이 남았다.


This was another part that strongly echoed with me as well, not because she shared her vulnerability, but because she was so blunt and innocent about her 'present.' Whether or not her present or what is was going through 'now' was bad or good, she just openly shared and that is powerful. By sharing her present status of her mind and struggles, it really led me to create a set to capture her bit closely and deeply. When this society is all about what we have accomplished and what we have become, simply saying describing all the 'completed' things to define ourselves, she knew how to describe herself as herself. Nonetheless, it's her anyways. And that was the core part of this photoshoot of her.

In the mirror


I feel that my face has changed so much in the past several years as far as settling into my “adult” face. I have also cut my hair very short for the first time in my life. I have stopped wearing as many ‘feminine’ things. I am enjoying putting on a different look to the world and becoming more comfortable in my skin. I think that I used to look in the mirror and critique it for everything I didn’t enjoy seeing. But now I feel that I am more body neutral as in that is my body and that it is my face and it is a good body that does good work. I have arms that do things that arms should do and legs that do things that legs should do. And that is enough.

Film

In the most boring way ever, I don’t have any expectations. I just want to go to this space and be me and hope that the camera captures who I am as a person point blank.

I think the film images turned out exceptional, suiting the mood and serenity she had in her presence. I was very thankful that she drove all the way from Kansas (Ah, first long distance collaboration!), and was very patient with me and Jon to capture her the way she is. I just wanted this photoshoot to be a sort of a company to her that she is doing great, already growing in her confidence, and support her vision and heart for the needy. Thank you again!