As Tet is near the corner, Matca has had a chance to organize another meet up at VUI Studio. We are so glad that after nearly two years organizing portfolio reviews, we still see new faces with a passion for photography and storytelling. Regular offline meetings like these have become a safe space to share and discuss on-going personal works. Let’s take a look at four works introduced in Portfolio Review #8, and don’t forget to follow Matca’s facebook page to get updates on Portfolio Review #9!
Trang takes photos to express her personal feelings of solitude and loss, many of which use the naked body as a means of expression. Trang focuses on her recent project, inspired by the lunar phase and her family’s monthly full moon rituals.
With her current approach, conceptualization and pre-production preparation are highly advisable. Trang’s idea about the full moon has a lot of potential and can be carried out in a more meticulous manner, with a better set-up, lighting and model direction.
Hoang Anh is a student of Vietnam University of Fine Arts and has just begun taking photos. She introduces her recent experimentations, including a project on designer clothing with an idea of contrast and another on the topic of identity in which the real faces of the subjects are covered by aluminum foils. Hoang Anh shares that she does these projects with the help of her friends, and that she is having difficulty in directing models, as well as expressing her ideas through photos.
Matca suggests that within genres like fashion or conceptual, having a well-defined concept and preparation will make the shooting process much smoother. Without saying doing personal projects is really important, so Hoang Anh should seize every opportunity to work, so as to build a portfolio and experiment to find an aesthetic cohesion. Hoang Anh can consider applying her knowledge of paintings on photography since it is a never-ending source of inspiration.
Lac Hoang brings a portfolio of photos and videos she prepares for the Objectif Reciprocal Artist Residency, focusing on a photography project about pain and memory. She has developed her own visual style and is clearly aware of her topic of interest. The highlight in Lac Hoang’s works is the creative use of daily objects to elicit emotions and deadpan attitude when it comes to sharing deeply personal matters. Although she refrains from the tear-jerking approach, recounting actual stories with family photos adds much weight to the works.
Huy is currently a first-year student at the Art Photography department in Hanoi Academy of Theatre and Cinema. He brings single street photos and a short reportage on life beside the railway conducted in a recent workshop. Huy shares that he has just started wandering around and taking photos of strangers yet is still unsatisfied with his current approach. It is clearly seen that Huy often applies visual techniques in his street photos, which are shot in quite popular places and so do not reflect his own perspective. Although Huy has not been shooting for long, not hesitating to approach strangers is a big plus if he wants to follow this path.
Matca suggests that Huy should spend time doing research on the history of photography to find inspiration from predecessors and explore various approaches to street photography rather than sticking to the decisive moment. Though street photos are highly spontaneous, thinking beforehand about his desired topic can help him observe in an informed manner. Besides, Huy should record close subjects like friends and family; this exercise will help him become more comfortable in approaching other subject matters.
Portfolio Review With Matca is a periodic gathering and portfolio review session, organized by Matca to create an offline platform where photography practitioners can share their works and have a direct conversation, extending the boundaries of our online sites. For more information, click here.