Friday, May 27, 2011

Eric Kim, Street Photographer - By Rita Kamel in a shutter click

Eric Kim, Street Photographer - By Rita Kamel in a shutter click

Main camera: Canon 5D.
Main lens: Canon 35 mm F/2
Post-processing software:
 Adobe Photoshop CS5, Silver Efex Pro, Lightroom 3.
Favorite lighting:
 Golden Hour (before sunset).
Favorite time to make photographs: 
During my lunch breaks at work.
Favorite season to make photographs:
 When it is rainy.
Favorite music while making photographs: The sound of cars on the streets.
Your dream equipment: 
Leica M9 and Leica Summilux 35 mm F/1.4
Favorite photographer: 
Nils Jorgensen.
Favorite quote related to photography: “If your photos aren’t good enough, you’re not close enough.” – Robert Capa

Eric Kim, street photographer

Why photography? What do you hope to achieve?
I love photography because it gives me an opportunity to slow down in my everyday life and appreciate the places and people around me. I want to show people the beauty of ordinary people and things.
Which photograph do you consider is an example of surreal photography? In what sense?

I consider my photograph: “UFO”, a quite surreal image. I find it surreal because the structure above the man in the bike looks out-of-this world, very similar to an UFO. When I saw this scene unfolding before my eyes, I imagined the “UFO” about to pick up the man on the bike and take him to another galaxy.
Which photograph made you fear for your equipment? What is the story behind it?

Together in the rain
I shot this photo in Seoul, Korea during the summer when there would be irregular but strong rains. I was inside a bar, and suddenly it started pouring outside. I then saw these two ladies about to walk into the bar, and I jumped outside (nearly getting soaking wet) to capture this shot. My camera was a bit wet, but overall okay.
What style attracts you most? Why?
There is no comparison, I love street photography. I feel that through this style, I am able to capture the rawness of life. Street photography is spontaneous and I have no idea what is going to happen next. Not only that, but the thrill of getting a once-in-a-lifetime shot is unexplicable.
How far do you go with post-processing?
When processing my images in black and white, I use the Photoshop plugin called “Silver Efex Pro.” By far it is the best black and white conversion software out there, as it allows me more control of my conversions. Not only that, but I can add grain to my images (which I love to do).
What motivates you to grab the camera and go make a photograph?
I love to make photographs in the street because it gives me a sense of calm and peace. Not only that, but I love the feeling of waking up every morning knowing that there is something new to make a photograph of.
Tell us about a weird thing you do or a weird habit you have before a photoshoot:
I clean the front element of my lens using my breath and t-shirt.

Describe your feelings during a photoshoot: 
When I am shooting on the streets, I feel connected to the people around me. I am able to see a deeper insight into their lives through the images I capture. At the end of the day, I feel that I share the same experiences as them in living everyday life.
Ethically, what are your limits in photography?I try not to take photos of homeless people. In most cases I think it is just getting an “easy shot” which uses the misery of others as a crutch. I think that taking these types of photos are not only overplayed but tactless as well. There are cases when people can take tasteful photos of homeless people, but it is something I try to avoid.
3 tips / advice to other photographers:
  1. Always carry your camera with you everywhere you go – everywhere.
  2. Only show your best work.
  3. Shoot everyday.
How to stay updated with your work?

Article Republished for

Editor Rita Kamel
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