Laughing Ladies / NYC + Hanoi

To make a memorable photograph, try to make a photograph with laughter.

One of the emotions I love is happiness. To me, happiness as an emotion can be manifested in many different ways. A practical way is through laughter.

For example, this is one of my favorite photos: a photo of my grandma laughing:

halmunee-grandma-eric kim photography seoul-0003562-2
My Grandma, Seoul, 2017

How did I get the shot? Here is the contact:

To start off, I visited my grandma (around 82 years old), and wanted to document our experience together. I first photographed her a bit on the couch, then she told me she looked too shabby, so she got dressed up.

She then came out of the room and said: “I’m ready now!” (she was decked out in his fashionable clothes).

So we went to one of her bedrooms, and I tried to photograph her against a simple white background (in the spirit of Richard Avedon). I wanted her against a simple white background, for there to be no distractions.

I have been trying to photograph more happy emotions in my photos, like laughter. I thought about my favorite ‘laughing lady’ photo:

eric kim laughing lady nyc 2015

The way I got the lady in NYC to laugh is by taking a lot of photos. Half-way through the series of images, the lady says: “You’re crazy!” and starts laughing. I just got one shot of her laughing:

eric kim laughing lady contact

Actually recently, I got another photo (quite similar) here in Hanoi:

eric kim street photography hanoi-0004960
Hanoi, 2017

Anyways, I wanted to evoke laughter from my grandma– to make a happy image.

To get her to laugh, I told her:

Grandma, start laughing–just like me! “HAHAHAHAHAHA!”

And she started to imitate my laughter, and I kept taking a lot of photos with a flash. The last photo was the best. I’m glad I ‘worked the scene.’

The world needs more laughing ladies: