Hello! I am the founder of TakePikChua.
This is me exploring life with my camera.
This trekking trip was exceptionally special in defining what I value the most in life & photography.
It's always about the people, relationships and experiences.
I came from an animation background- as an NTU School of Art Design and Media Character Animation Graduate and worked as a Storyboard Artist, the frontline of animation pipelines, for both in-house and for animation studios that produced children cartoon content for international platforms such as Disney & Netflix.
It isn't that big a leap, from creating fictional content to photographing people. Similarly, I love that
Photography is storytelling;
uses compositional design for narratives in a single image;
allows us to hop on the characters' adventures- together, we cry, we laugh, we grow.
However, I think that the biggest highlight of photography is storytelling raw feelings.
I love celebrating the fun, the love and the authenticity of you and your loved ones &
highlighting the beauty even in subtle and unlikely moments.
My favourite images must be the ones that capture the genuineness of the people, relationships and experiences.
Whether your laughing chins were like kueh lapis or whether your hair was messy, I think it doesn't matter as
the story is the best when you're simply you.☺
How long have you been a photographer?
When I was 19, I first photographed portraits and events at my 5D4N church camp. After I published the photos, I was in awe at how the photos helped everyone to relive the camp. The photographs brought about laughter through the rekindled jokes; goosebumps from the scary night games; the silence and the fun; the warmth in memory of heartfelt conversations and deepened relationships. I found the effects of photography powerful, and almost magical as the reminiscent brought life to moments that happened. I have never stopped photographing since then.
What got you into photographing weddings?
As I travelled solo in my early 20s, I was fascinated to see the human-to-human interactions frozen in time within the frames. Across cultures, age, gender.., places- be it along the cold and challenging terrains of Everest Base Camp trek or a warm and cosy cafe in Melbourne, there was always the availability of stories undiscovered and undocumented. As cliché as it sounds, that was when I understood “a picture speaks a thousand words” – the facial expressions and body languages of people reveal minute details, and these frames can all speak a different story of someone’s unique world.
Before becoming a full-time photographer, I was a Storyboard Artist in the TV animation industry, ideating and drawing frame by frame visual representation of an entire animation’s narrative- including character poses, facial expressions, and backgrounds.
With photographing life and storyboarding, my decision to delve into wedding photography was rooted in a deep passion in storytelling raw feelings in people, relationships and experiences through frame by frame and along with my desire to highlight the beauty of life and people's worlds. On a wedding day, in the presence of the couple’s loved ones and amidst the sea of emotions, it is with great honour and responsibility to capture relationships and the flow of events as authentically as possible. Every frame documents a slice of each person’s world. Wedding photography has been exceptionally enjoyable and purposeful.
Can you describe the style of your photography?
My photographs capture raw feelings, showing that people simply came as they were. With compositional design and effective storytelling, I frame stories using locations, moments and lighting. My photographs showcase the personalities of couples and the unique dynamics that they share with the people around. Amid the myriad of emotions, it’s being real that matters. My photography also highlights beauty in subtle and unlikely places.
When a couple engages you to photograph for their engagement/wedding, what are your goals?
Rather than focusing on only the hours of the photography session, my goal is to serve the couple pre-, during and post-shoot. I seek to support, to simplify the process and to put couples at ease on their journey towards the wedding day. As every couple is unique, I want to understand their stories and dynamics to better suggest arrangements that suit their personalities and preferences, and to photograph the essence of who they are. It is also important to prioritise people’s enjoyment of the process and to allow them to simply be themselves.