Would you mind introducing yourself? Sure, my name is Jimmy and I’ve been shooting since August 2017. Still learning, still evolving and having a blast. I’m based in the San Francisco Bay Area where I work full-time in the tech sector. I’m married to my beautiful wife Sharon and we have four children.
Jimmy's Instagram - @jimmyychung
Where are you from, and where do you currently live? Born and raised in Los Angeles, but relocated to the Bay Area almost 6 years ago.
How would you describe your style of photography? This is a tough one to answer. I like a variety of different styles, but never my own. I suppose my style is constantly evolving and changing. It's a bit frustrating, but its part of the process. You’ll see a lot of landscape on my IG, but I’d like to get into more street, lifestyle and portraits.
When did you first fall in love with taking photos? I’ve always enjoyed taking pictures, but I didn’t love it until I decided to pursue this hobby August of last year. To be quite honest, I didn't know if I’d like it this much, but I was inspired by some of the content I came across on IG and thought it would be fun to try and create something similar.
Do you have a favourite photography related memory, whether it be in front or behind the camera? It was probably when my family and I made the trek up to Yosemite for a day-trip - our first time visiting as a family. This was probably a month or two after I bought my 6D - I wanted to put it to the test, and Yosemite wasn’t a bad place to do it. My pregnant wife at the time, along with our three kiddos woke up at 4 am to leave for Yosemite so we could catch the sunrise. We spent the entire day in the valley, and caught a sunset at Taft Point and got home close to midnight. My pictures came out like crap, but the fact that we experienced something special like this together was the only thing that mattered.
Who/What inspires your photography? I get inspired by the Creator Himself. Everything that is captured through our lens has already been beautifully created for us to document. My wife is a great source of inspiration. She is super supportive. There aren’t a lot of folks in this world like her. Its a family effort to get out and do what I do, and I appreciate that she’s down for whatever. We also both desire for our kids to love and appreciate the outdoors, and capturing these current moments for us to re-experience later together is something that pushes me to create.
What kind of camera do you use? Canon 6D, iPhone 7+ & Pentax K1000.
What's your editing process like? Most of the time its Lightroom > Airdrop to my iPhone > Post. I use VSCO quite a bit for my iPhone shots. If needed, I’ll make small tweaks on the IG editor before posting. Composition and colour are important to me, but the edit has to invoke some kind of feeling for me personally. That’s the most important thing when I approach editing my pictures.
Are there any tips you would like to give to anyone out there who would love to create similar style photos to yours? My most basic tip would be to shoot in RAW format, and learn how to use Lightroom (or any other editing app). You’ll hear it quite often because its true - the single most important thing for an amateur photographer is to go out and shoot as much as you can. Shoot all different types of genre and see what you like. Commit yourself to getting better. I don’t have as much time to create as most photographers do, but I’ll grind it out and make the effort to get out as much as possible - and my family usually comes along. I also live 40 miles from SF and over 50 miles from Mt Tam (one-way), so you have no excuse. Just get out and shoot! Follow photographers that inspire you, and emulate them - see if you can replicate their work to a certain degree. The best athletes in the world today have emulated some of the greats when they were amateurs, and it can certainly apply to creatives, too. Doing this will get you closer to where you want to be as a photographer, and in your own form.
Who are some of your favourite photographers? Lots of good ones out there. Legends such as Ansel Adams, Steve McCurry (@stevemccurryofficial) and Joel Meyerowitz (@joel_meyerowitz) are always inspiring. Joe Greer (@ioegreer, @ioestreet) and Lucy Laucht (@lucylaucht) are my current favourites. These two are the best all-around photogs in my opinion. Sam Alive (@samalive), Forrest Mankins (@forrestmankins), Samuel Elkins (@samuelelkins), Jake Debruyckere (@jaquib), Emilie Ristevski (@emilielula), Dan Tom (@dantom), Andy Ross (@andyyross) and Nicholas Maggio (@nicholasmaggio) are some other favourites.
Are there any photographers here on Instagram that you wish more people knew about? @hambyd, @zakmauger, @lea.savvides, @jessetalavera - there are probably a few others.
What would be your number one dream destination for a photography adventure? Anywhere colourful, culturally rich, and near the water. Maybe Thailand or India.
Which time of year is your favourite for taking photographs? Fall probably, but generally anytime other than winter.
The coolest place you've ever been? Paris and all the cool villages in southern France. Gorges du Verdon was breathtaking. I’ve never seen anything like it. My wife and I also spent a few weeks in the Czech Republic to teach in an English Camp before we had kids 10yrs ago! Currently, we’re in a season of life where its difficult to travel (by plane) and also very expensive, so we settle for day trips, and short road trips.
Do you have any upcoming photography trips/sessions that you would like to share? Did you know 4th graders get free admittance to all U.S. National Parks? That includes everyone in the car. My oldest will be in 4th grade this Fall so we are planning a road trip through some national parks for about a week or two. Not sure where yet, but we’ve have been planning to visit the Southwest, or Montana for a while now. Would love to cross the border and make it up to Canada as well.
I’m also interested in collaborating with companies for brand/product work - especially family friendly brands! If this is you and you’re reading this, let's create something amazing together!
Anything extra you would like to share? Nothing replaces hard work. If you want to get better, you need to grind and get at it.
I have some prints for sale at https://jimmy.darkroom.tech. 30% off for hippo fans with code ‘hippomag30' at checkout! Also, per request, I also do custom prints. It's basically one of my pictures of your choice, with a custom edit to match the tone and colour of the space you plan to hang the picture. Reach out for more info if interested.
My website will be up soon: www.jimmyychung.com. Some of my work along with my contact info will be there. I also plan to blog - pretty excited. Keep an eye out and subscribe!
Lastly, I really appreciate everyone’s support! I still don’t get why people like my work, but it's encouraging and fuels me to keep at it and get better.
Don't forget to follow Jimmy on Instagram! (@jimmyychung)