I’ve featured him before and I’m going to feature him again and again (hmm, is this foreshadowing that I see coming about?), but Justin Wu is an upcoming talent that I couldn’t showcase enough of. An Ivey student (can you believe that he’s working on his second degree and…he’s my age? Yeesh) and a keen creative eye, JWu’s looking to take 2009 to new heights as he works towards realizing his goals of becoming an esteemed fashion photographer. 7 Questions, two Scarbarians – click to read on.
- Tell me about the first time you picked up an SLR – was it euphoric?
- Why Fashion Photography? And how does a business brain (Richard Ivey student) get that balance?
- How do your Scarborough roots play into your artistry? And how did you like knowing that I was basically your neighbour?
- You’re headed across the Atlantic – what can you say about your future happenings in Paris?
- Toronto Fashion and/or Photography – where is it at and where is it going?
- How can we stalk you?
- What’s new with you, JWu?
I wouldn’t necessarily call it a euphoric moment, but it was, without a shadow of doubt, a defining moment when I knew photography was what I wanted to pursue. Prior to getting my first SLR, I was experimenting with point-and-shoot and disposable cameras. It also felt better in my hands than a pen ever did ?
I started as a fine-art photographer a few years ago and had the sole pursuit of using photography to express my ideas.
It was, however, the business degree that pushed me into fashion photography. It opened my eyes of photography as a career option as we studied entrepreneurship. Regrettably, fine-art photography was less than sustainable so it was natural that fashion photography provided that perfect balance. It allows me to be creative while working regularly for clients. What interested me the most was that fashion photography combined both of my passions of art and fashion together. Lastly, it lets me to collaborate with other talented and creative individuals.
I’d say that Scarborough is such a bland part of town devoid of character or charisma that it encouraged us to break free from the norm and express ourselves freely.
Not knowing that you were basically living a neighbourhood over for a number of years makes me proud that our quiet little corner of the burbs has produced such talented and passionate people.
While I’ll be jetting off for Paris in a couple months to study, my aspirations are to build some fashion industry contacts while I’m there and attend a myriad of fashion shows to be inspired. I plan to prepare and take editorial shoots across Europe contacting agencies along the way. My dream would be to have the opportunity to apprentice an established fashion photographer in Paris, London or Milan after school.
I see a lot of potential for Toronto fashion. L’Oreal Fashion Week has made a stir in the market and reminded the world that Toronto has many talented and young designers that are waiting to be found. I see that it has a lot of room to grow and with greater attention, we should expect that Toronto will be among the list of top fashion capitals of the world.
As for photography, I see fashion photography shifting styles back to a more glossy approach than the harsh raw images à la Marc Jacobs and Tom Ford. There will also be much more multimedia involved including digital landscapes and accompanying video shoots to compliment an editorial series. For instance, there has been a lot of buzz around Victoria Beckham’s online video ad and major fashion houses, like Diesel & LV, are beginning to compliment their print editorial series with short videos.
I regularly update my website with the latest photos and use my facebook group to update fans, friends and family with what projects I’m working on.
Facebook Group: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=10413071821
Flickr Account: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jwuphoto/
Critiques are always welcome and appreciated! If any of you have any questions or comments, feel free to drop me a line @ JWu.HBA2009@ivey.ca.
As I’m about to finish school, I am passionate to pursue fashion photography as my career. I will continue to push myself and hope to take more fashion editorials to prepare my book in the coming weeks.
Recently, I had the privilege and opportunity to work with Shan Sarwar a week ago! Those photos will be posted shortly.
With regards to the shifting marketplace, I’m also currently shooting a short film with another photographer and packaged with an accompanying print series.
Take a look at a behind-the-scenes video compilation of Justin Wu’s November 22nd Shoot
If you’re a stylist, designer, model or even a photographer who has innovative ideas, I would love to collaborate with you.
Thanks for featuring me, UrbaneBloc!