Your Stories

Open Category, Second Place

Caspar Ho Ying Yao

Like pages in a book, I believe clothes can weave a narrative of our lives.

Clothes are mementos of special occasions, like the blouse I gifted my Mom on her birthday or the first suit I bought for junior college graduation night.

Clothes detail past goals and aspirations, with marathon singlets marking the time I decided to cultivate better habits and lead a healthier lifestyle.

Clothes recount personal struggles and progression, where every uniform and CCA jersey I’ve owned carries memories of the thrills of success, woes of failure, and warmth of friendships.

Like pages in a book, clothes can document my journey through different chapters of my life. Good or bad, beautiful or ugly, they intertwine to tell the stories that have shaped me into who I am today.


  • Tell us more about what inspired your entry?
    These images were shot as part of a personal challenge to photograph the space I'm most familiar with, my home, as I felt really restless after having not used my camera in what seemed like forever.

  • How does your entry connect to you personally to the theme This Is My Story?
    I've always been drawn by how clothes can evoke powerful feelings of nostalgia as we unconsciously attach specific memories to each piece, and I wanted to portray this exact feeling through my photos.

  • How did you conceptualise your shot? Did you use any specific techniques to achieve certain effects in your shot?
    I chose to photograph at sunrise as morning light has this uncanny ability to give character to otherwise dull subjects. All that was left was to find the sweet spot when composing in order to achieve a nice flare.

  • Was there any external inspiration behind your shot that you have used as reference?
    I was inspired by the Chiaroscuro technique of embracing one's lights and shadows in order to provide a greater sense of volume and spirit to my images.

  • Why did you think that a series of photos would work better than a single photo? From one photo to the next, perhaps can you explain the link between them?
    I wanted to highlight the analogy of clothes being like pages in a book. Similar to how either side of the same page can tell different stories, photographing two sides of the same set of clothes also produces vastly different results in terms of the look and feel of the images.

  • How did the use of post-processing enhance the storytelling ability of your entries?
    The adjustments I made to the crop and colours of my images helped me to guide my viewers' eyes to the main focus of the photograph, and better evoke the feelings I sought to capture with my subject.

  • If you had the chance to retake your shot(s), what would you do differently?
    While I take pride in being able to capture the natural state of affairs in my home, perhaps I would have done some minor readjustments to hide the more intimate pieces of clothing :)

About the Photographer

  • When, how, and why did you get into photography?
    My interest began when I started reading up on the concept of the exposure triangle to better understand what the SS, ISO and F/ values I often saw at photo exhibitions meant. I then bought my first camera in 2016 and have been photographing sporadically ever since.

  • Do you define yourself by any particular style(s) of photography? If so, what are they and why?
    I'm trying not to define myself as a photographer of any specific genre at this stage, so as to give myself the freedom to try the many other areas of photography I've yet to explore without inhibition :)

  • How has your photographic journey been affected by COVID-19? Are you more inspired to take more photos? Have the restrictions hindered, or conversely enhanced your creativity?
    One thing I like to do while at home is to watch youtube videos of photowalks and visualise in my head how I would photograph a particular scene. Thereafter, I compare my image with the actual image that was taken by the particular content creator. This not only allows me to continue exercising my ability to notice image-worthy scenes, it also gives me the opportunity to learn from the unique perspectives of others.

  • What are your photographic goals after Montage 2020?
    One area I'm really interested to explore is film photography haha. Watching Willem Verbeeck and other film photography content creators on youtube has definitely piqued my interest towards this genre!

Judges' Comments

  • Geoff Ang: Love the concept and the photographic approach, lovely details and light too!

  • Alexander Ow: A great display of illustrating a simple, yet effective narrative using our everyday, basic essentials.

  • Elliot Lee: I wished there was maybe one more picture in this series. The two seemingly ordinary frames are expounded so well by the caption. I liked the meaning that different clothes carry in a different point in time. And I always love a good light. But it's missing a closing statement in the pictures.