Tell us a little bit more about you, Chris. How did Hong Kong influence your work and your career? How does the city inspire your work as a photographer?
Hong Kong is described as a place where “East meets West”. There is a lot of culture and stories to tell. As I am a local artist, that influenced me to create photography artwork from my hometown.
In my point of view, it seems that I know the city well but there is always something new to be discovered and photographed to be the visual language.
Hong Kong is a fast paced city. People look for a heaven when tired of the hectic pace of city life.
That inspired me to find my “heaven”. Then I can slow down, observe an object and make a photograph with my Polaroid, exploring the visual language.
How did you get involved with Polaroid Photography and instant film? Or when did this connection happen?
When I was a studio commercial photographer in the 90s, I used a lot of the Polaroid film during photo shooting everyday. I still vividly remember the magical moment of first witnessing the instant effect of Polaroid Photography, which is simply awesome. I have become a big fan ever since then.
Last year, I had a photography assignment to use my Polaroid 690 camera to photograph an artist and create emulsion transfer. The shooting experience reminded me of the traditional way to create a Polaroid artwork in the nowadays-digital world.
What attracts you in architecture? And why do you chose to use Polaroid film instead of digital or even classical 35mm? Is there something special behind this choice?
There are Chinese tradition and western aesthetics hidden in the architectural space, the techniques and the structure of Hong Kong monuments. They are cultural heritage and telling unfinished stories.
Pictures captured using Polaroid films give rise to instant images with a plain sense of reality, occasionally varicoloured.
In this digital era, such primitive image creation is a return to traditional technique of film photography.
What is your favourite place to photograph in Hong Kong? If you have to give a tip on what to photograph while one is visiting Hong Kong, what would that be?
My favourite place is in the old town Central which is located on Hong Kong Island. You could find the “contrast” of the past and the present, east and west, excitement and tranquillity to photograph the Hong Kong culture.
If you had the very last pack of 8 Polaroid Photographs in the world, what would you like to photograph?
I would use the last pack of 8 Polaroids to create a small project. I would photograph myself and my seven photographer friends who are Polaroid film fans.
These eight photos shall depict our mood and feeling about our last Polaroid story.
More about Chris’s work on his website www.chriswonghoifai.com