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  • The Sensitive Heart of Lean Lui

    Lean Lui is a 19 year-old Hong Kongese. University student and slef-taught photographer, she has been taking pictures as long as she can remember. Full of sensuality, her work is mainly inspired by her own experiences.

    What is your relation to photography?
    I have never had  professional photography classes, but I have been taking photos as long as i can remember. It’s like a nature to me. Around kindergarten, I guess, I didn’t know exactly it was photography, I don’t really have a sense of photographing thing. That camera was like a magic box to me, because I remember I loved to capture some special moments with it, so it was like writing dairy for other people.This is my hazy memory of my first exposure to photography.

    I started with writing and photo-taking being my medias of expression, and at a certain level, i found that they are rather similar, both revealing the person behind the opus with their minds. What they read, how they think…

    “The greatest inspiration for me is the sensitive heart that my mother has blessed me with”.

    But compared to writing, photography is more physical, in a way, that it’s more visualized. And with photography, there’s more space for me to left blank. I guess I’m influenced by the Chinese style of drawing, where the most important thing was to leave blank spaces on the canvas. So, through photography, I can express my perception of things via a ‘non-existing existence’ way. Or, it can be read as a protection for my insecurities.

    What does inspire you?
    I am inspired by my own experience mostly. But there’s a big part of it coming from movies, books, other people’s work and just about all the beautiful things in the world. I consider myself a sensitive person, I can get really emotional with even the slightest thing. And these feeling that touched my heart became the root and branches and converted into my photograph. In conclusion, the greatest inspiration for me is the sensitive heart that my mother has blessed me with.

    what part of sensuality do you intend to capture?
    Detachment and insecurity. Because I always felt like I don’t belong, I feel out focused by the world. It has too many layers for me, people always sugar-coat their ways of being so much and I can never understand them. This is a really upsetting experience for me as I am a very straight-forward person, people who interact with me might perceive me as a hedgehog and my thorns can hurt them. And I’ve always been alienated by my peers as I have always loved reading and thinking. At that age when people were volubly talking about gossip and pop stars, I feel uninterested and continued reading my Freud. They would consider me as an outcast for not joining them at their chatting section. Since I have been a premature person, this feeling of detachment and insecure has followed me through my whole life, even now.

    [Edit – oct 2018] Lean Lui has released her first book: “19.29”, available here.

    More to see on her tumblr.