Jamie Chung Featured in Communication Arts
Not long ago Dzana Tsomondo spent a full day in Jamie Chung’s Brooklyn studio for the piece that was just published in Communication Arts about the photographer’s career and process. “Objectification: A Career in Still Life” describes what she found there: an extended meditation on composition, form, and precision.
Before Jamie made it to the Parsons School of Design to learn his craft, he was struggling with how to turn his love for photography into a career. The logistics of such a choice weren’t computing, until he was able to get to New York and visit studios, assist photographers, and make peace with this new way of life. Once fostering that understanding, he found himself gravitating towards still-life work. “There’s something about the kind of photography where you are not going out and finding something that exists, you are just creating it all in front of the camera,” he tells Communication Arts. “It’s kind of like the darkroom – the process really sucks me in, and I can get lost in it.” In this process, outside of the tyranny of the sun, Jamie is able to create the environment he’s photographing, adjusting every element millimeter by millimeter, until it is composed exactly the way his needs require it.
When Howard Bernstein received Jamie’s portfolio for the first time, it left an immediate impression on him. “It was a far more refined and technically capable book than most students’ that I have seen, and I have been doing this a long time,” Howard tells Communication Arts. “There was a series titled Mischief that was stuff like crushed mailboxes, toilet paper thrown over trees, and it put a smile on my face. So I thought, ‘Maybe this would make art directors smile,’ and I told him to come visit me.” Since then, Jamie has been on B&A’s roster, filling his portfolio with covers for Time Magazine and Businessweek, filling the pages of W Magazine, V Magazine, Document, ESPN, and ad campaigns for Finlandia and Chase.
When it comes down to it, there’s little else Jamie would prefer to do. The challenges that still-life photography offers Jamie are singular and reach him at a visceral level. “I can’t think of anything better than being on set - the creative problem solving, the experimentation, the collaborations,” Jamie says. “Everything informs each other, cross-pollinating.”
Check out the full piece in Communication Arts' Illustration Annual 2015 issue on stands now.