Your photography is always in a state of flux, and so are you.

I. Growth comes from change.

Santa Monica, 2009

Heraclitus once said that all of life is in a state of flux.

Flux: constant chance and movement.

For example, your atoms and molecules are totally different today than when you were 5 years old. However, you would still identify your 5-year old self as “yourself”–why? Because a sense of continuity, and personal memory.

However, to grow develop, and be a human– we need to be in a state of constant change and flux.

Tokyo, 2012

We are in flux between hungry and satiated.

We in in flux between movement and stillness.

In your photography, your style is gonna always be changing, in a state of flux.

Provincetown, 2014

For example, when you started photography, you’re certainly a different photographer and human being than who you are now.

If your photography style never changes, it means you’re dying as a photographer and artist.

II. I love changing my photography style

Downtown LA, 2013

For example, when I was 18, my photography style was different than it is now at age 29.

When I started off, I liked landscapes. Now it bores me to death.

When I started street photography, I liked black and white “decisive moments” in the spirit of Henri Cartier-Bresson. Now that bores me silly. I’m more of a Josef Koudelka meets Richard Avedon– I love gritty photos, with soul, and portraits of humans, and photos of myself.

Downtown LA, 2015

I’m always in a state of flux. I changed from street photography, to personal photography, to urban landscapes, black and white, color, film, digital, smartphone, Medium format, self portraiture.

Berkeley, 2015 #cindyproject #ricohgrii

Philosophically, from technologist, to Stoic, to zen, to Taoism, to Nietzsche, to poetry, to art, to modern design, to classic Greek philosophy, to Socrates, to pre-Socrates, and post-Socrates, Jesus, Seneca, Nassim Taleb, and now Eric Kim.

III. Change is good.

Seoul, 2009

For some reason, we have shame in change. In American politics, to “flip flop” is seen as negative.

To change your opinion is also seen as bad.

To not be “consistent” is bad.

SF, 2015. Shot on a Ricoh GR

But it makes no sense. If you are the same person you were 10 years ago, wouldn’t that be depressing?

If you never changed your mind, would you ever grow, develop, and evolve?

IV. Never stop changing as a photographer.

Photo by Johnny Lu. Downtown LA, 2015

The lesson is this:

Your photography style is always in a state of flux, or change. Don’t be embarrassed, relish in it.

So be like a mad photography scientist: never stop experimenting, and having fun. Blow shit up, explore, wander, and tinker.

Paris, 2015


Downtown LA, 2015
Downtown LA, 2015
Downtown LA, 2015

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