Your Stories

Youth Category, Honourable Mention

Lim Ying Xuan

Caption
Home is all I know.

Inspirations

  • Tell us more about what inspired your entry?
    This photo was taken when I was on a school trip with the residential college I was staying in. We went to India (specifically Rajasthan and Gujarat) to visit the non-governmental organizations that existed to help various marginalized groups get access to the things that we enjoy as citizens of an economy that is more developed. This picture was taken when we were walking down from the mountain on which some scheduled tribes lived. I noticed that the girl was tending to the goats, and I thought it was quite a nice scene, but only after I had the photos developed, I realized that there was someone lying on the floor.

  • How does your entry connect to you personally to the theme This Is My Story?
    Noticing only the girl and the goats is what most people would notice upon first glance, but then later with closer scrutiny one would realize that there is something different about the person lying on the ground, half obscured by the goats. In the same way we see people first as who they are, and then later on we get an understanding of how the other people in their lives have shaped them in ways that we do not immediately see.

  • Was there any external inspiration behind your shot that you have used as reference?
    I didn’t really have any external inspiration, I just thought that was a nice shot. I was actually really surprised that it turned out so nicely! It’s quite surprising that I could get a shot like this simply with a point and shoot camera.

  • How did the use of post-processing enhance the storytelling ability of your entries?
    I didn’t really use much post-processing, as I like the effect that film brings to an image. I only slightly adjusted the contrast and exposure of the image.

  • If you had the chance to retake your shot(s), what would you do differently?
    Probably nothing! It was a lucky shot and I was glad I caught it.

About the Photographer

  • When, how, and why did you get into photography?
    I got into photography around the time I was in my second year of JC. I was inspired by a friend who started getting really into film photography, which made me want to pick it up. It just so happened that there was a film camera lying around at home that belonged to my late father and it was something that I remember using from my childhood. I was lucky that the camera (an Olympus mju:ii Zoom 80!) was still functioning around the time I started to do film photography and it helped me build confidence in taking more pictures! Analog photography is definitely my stronger suit than digital, because analog photography is centred around (in my opinion) the framing of a scene and the vibes that it channels.

  • Do you define yourself by any particular style(s) of photography? If so, what are they and why?
    I would say that my photography style tends more towards street photography, and I like to capture things as they happen in the moment. As a result they usually don’t look super posed, and more often than not the people do not show their faces, as I also want to do my part in ensuring that their privacy is being upheld.

  • 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?
    COVID-19 has definitely hindered my photographic journey ever so slightly, as there was a long period of time (especially during circuit breaker) where we should not spend too much time outside, and there are many restrictions to where we can or cannot go. As a result I have been experimenting with taking portraits instead, as that’s something I have always felt interested in!

  • What are your photographic goals after Montage 2020?
    After Montage 2020, I think I would push myself to do more portrait shots, as well as learn how to work with a full manual analog camera. I have relied mostly on point and shoot cameras to correct the exposure by triggering the flash automatically, but now I will have to relearn a lot of stuff because I am starting to use a manual camera! I am also excited to try out certain techniques like pushing film for instance.