A consistent iPhoneographer since day one in his epic journey to capture the moments he loves, Aik Beng Chia is a star among the sky. His work is thoughtful, imaginative, groundbreaking, and full of stories. ABC is a premier iPhoneographer whose work has been published in many exhibitions around the world. ABC will also be featured as the solo artist in an upcoming gallery show this fall in Singapore.
And now iPhonoeogenic proudly presents Aik Beng Chia…
(I’m No Banksy)
Edgar C: Where are you from? Tell me about yourself?
Aik Beng Chia: I’m a freelance designer, an illustrator and an iPhoneographer from Singapore. During my free time I like to illustrate and some of my illustration can be found at www.pixelmunky.com
EC.: How did you get into iPhoneography?
ABC: In 2007, I stumbled upon an iPhone photography site: ‘Just What I See, The iPhone Street Photography Of Greg Schmigel’. It got me interested in iPhoneography right away, since then, I’ve been on a ‘Shooting’ spree.
EC: Can you recall the first iPhoto you took that made you go WOW, I really got something here!?
ABC: The 1st iPhoto photo that took me by surprise was this shot entitled ‘Fast Forward’. I heard about ‘Panning’ technique used among Pro Photographers, so I decided to experiment using my iPhone 3GS and the result.. was WOW, it works… Cool!
EC: What does iPhoneography mean to you?
ABC: iPhoneography to me is an art by itself, an instant moment of randomness, spontaneity and different perspective. It cannot be compare to Professional Photography, It’s got it own flaws and limitation and it up to the iphoneographer to bring out the beauty of the image he/she captures. With the new iPhone 4 and future models to come every year from APPLE, Sharper images with better sensor will become a greater piece of Art through post process technics made available by various photo editing apps. Most importantly, the EYE for details behind or front the iPhone lens.
EC: Do you have any formal training regarding traditional photography?
ABC: Nope I do not have any formal training in regards to traditional photography despite having the love for photography.
EC:What about your hometown is so special that it makes you what to capture it through your iPhone?
ABC: My hometown, Singapore, is a thriving cosmopolitan city filled with diversity and multiplicity of cultures, languages, arts and architecture that makes me want to capture it through my iPhone. Having all this in front of me, i try to capture images that most people will not notice be it through commuting, places or people they bypass everyday. Like this shot I’m not Vidal Sassoon’ found in the back alley of Chinatown, Singapore.
(I’m not Vidal Sassoon)
EC: Who or what are your artistic influences?
ABC: Everything that surrounds me from still life, architecture and people in the streets. Artistic influences will be all my talented iPhoneographers friends whom I had the honor to know from Singapore and all over the world who share the common love.
EC: What has been the some of the challenges of using the iPhone as a camera?
ABC: I learnt to take pictures without people noticing, which works very well especially when I’m shooting street photography because I don’t look like a pro. But most recently, this shot entitled ’ An Old School Mailbox’ is one of my toughest challenge. It was in an abandoned Post Office besides a Police Station, In order not to get myself in trouble with the law, to capture the shot, I have to improvise by using a Gorilla tripod, an adjustable pole use for hanging clothes and an iPhone holder. The distance between the mailboxes and the fence was about 2.5 metre apart. The challenge i faced was to squeeze my iPhone and the tripod through the fence holes, mounting it onto the pole with only 6 fingers, hoping it will not drop into the compound. Once I capture what I wanted, with the help of self timer function in Gorillacam, I was so relieved that I still got my iPhone.
(An Old School Mailbox)
EC: Has your work been published before, if so, where? Did you ever expect your work to be noticed by the iPhoneography community?
ABC: Yes it has been published and I never expected my work to be noticed by the iphoneography community simply because there’re so many talented iPhoneographers out there and it was a honor to be featured/published by some of them whom i admire and respect.
The most recent one is by Glyn Evans from iPhoneography.com
During the month of July 2010 by Knox Bronson from www.pixelsatanexhibition.com
and of course the man who got me started in iPhoneography Greg Schmigel from www.justwhatisee.com
Some of my pictures were selected for EYEEM exhibition in Berlin and most recently, MMS Gallery exhibition in Philadelphia.
EC: What has been the most surprising or most predictable reaction from people to your iPhotographs?
ABC: There’s one reaction I’ll never forget is coming from Knox Bronson from www.pixelsatanexhibition.com, This picture entitled ‘LUST’. Knox Bronson wanted to know whether it was shot using a nude model, My reply to him was it is an experiment, to illustrate Nudity. Instead of using a nude model, i used a Lady Bug lamp which I shot at IKEA entitled ‘Bug Off’. Using Montage app to align the subject and post process using Negative and Monotone to create the final image. Knox’s reply to me was.. “You’re too much”
(Bug Off – used to create ‘LUST”)
EC: What’s in your iPhone camera bag (apps)? What app(s) do you currently use the most often?
ABC: I Have about 30 over apps in my camera bag, Most often, I use CrossProcess, PhotoShop Express, Camera+, PicGrunger, PictureShow, Plastic Bullet, MoreLomo, Instant Camera, CineCrop and Mill Colour for my Black & White pictures.
EC: One of my favorite photos of yours is “Flight Of The Intruder” Do you mind telling us how this was created?
ABC: Sure, Only two apps were used to post process, they are PhotoSharpFree and CrossProcess.
Step 1 – Here’s the Original photo I shot using the iPhone 3GS camera
Step 2 – Using PhotoSharpFree app, I sharpen the picture.
Step 3 – Using CrossProcess i applied the Green Filter With Border.
That’s the final image.
Q: What other thoughts would you like to share?
A: Firstly I want to Thank you, Edgar, for having me on iPhoneogenic blog along with the rest of all the talented iPhoneographers whom I’ve got to know. Through the process becoming my friends and my inspiration.
Secondly, two quotes that mean a lot to me and I would like to share with the community.
The first one is from my friend Jaime Ferreyros, the other one is none other than Knox Bronson, whom I have the honor to know personally and collaborated with him recently again on The Sarah Remix project. The quotes speaks for itself and I hope it will inspire you just as it did for me.
“When it’s about expressing myself, I’m always very serious, I don’t intend to be the best or better than anyone, I just try to be honest with myself.” — Jaime Ferreyros
“Aim well, shoot until you get it, and app that bitch until it sings.” — Knox Bronson
For more on Aik check out these links:
All images shown here are copyrighted property of Aik Beng Chia, please contact Aik for copyright privileges.
© 2010 iPhoneogenic