Blog

The Image Deconstructive Workshop 2017, Denver Colorado

Thank you Ross Taylor and the group of amazing photojournalist and experimental storytellers who spoke during the TID 2017 workshop in Denver Colorado. I received an abundance of knowledge, inspiration, portfolio critiques, but most importantly friendships. 


After having some reflective conversations with a few of this years' attendees we would like to provide some feedback and suggest topics to include in future workshops. 

 

1) We appreciated the message and theme of "Find your way" but we desired to hear more about the failures and struggles of each photographers journey. It's crucial to talk about the triumphs and amazing stories each speaker has been privileged to document, yet it does not come without personal sacrifice and moments of fear and doubt. Lisa Krantz talked about her sacrifices to be present in her personal life and capture the story. 

 

2) How to manage finances as a freelance photographer/videographer.

 

3) We appreciated Sophia Allison's voice and perspective as an experimental storyteller who realized that news photojournalism was not for her. Her vulnerability and "outside of the common mold" perspective was encouraging to hear since not everyone who attends the workshop feels news is a good fit for them. 

 

4) Conversations and discussions about how the news industry is changing and the avenues for youth photojournalist to enter the field.

 

5) Best practices for self care since our job require deep investment in the people in our stories.

 

6) Inviting the local community of storytellers where the workshop is hosted to participate in the workshop in some way. We felt like we came to Denver for the workshop learned and talked about storytelling but did not get to experience the community of Denver and the local storyteller that are enacting change. 

 

7) Difficulties being a staff photographer at an unstable newspaper organization. 

 

Why we marched

As million of people around the world marched on Saturday to stand up for women's rights a day after the inauguration of President Donald Trump, tens of thousands marched in the Bay Area. Here are some of their reasons why. Featured in the SF Examiner Monday, January 23, 2017. 

Click on the red circles to hear their voices.

Highlights from my internship at the San Francisco Business Times

 Photo by Todd Johnson

Photo by Todd Johnson

I had the privileged of working at the San Francisco Business Times as their visual intern for the past three months Oct-Jan. An average day at my internship included managing my own assignments by contacting sources to schedule photo sessions, mastering efficiency while on assignment by completing portraits and a video interview in sometimes less than 15 minutes, editing and publishing photos and video content on the SF Business Times website and posting on social media handles. The SF Business Times now has about 300 more Instagram followers.

I'm grateful to have covered a diverse group of business beats in the Bay Area and interviewed talented business men and women who are the leading innovators of the 21st century. A special thanks to Todd Johnson (SF Business Times photographer and videographer) for teaching me new skills in visual storytelling and the editorial staff for your support. 

Below are a few of my favorite published works from my internship.

How the Exploratorium's new director prepares for the future (video)

Photo Gallery

BioFlash Podcast Producer

I produced 8 episodes of BioFlash a biweekly podcast, hosted by San Francisco Business Times biotech reporter Ron Leuty. From cancer immunotherapy to drug pricing, we explored the hot topics driving the life sciences ecosystem in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond.

 Cancer patient Carla Thomas is a recipient of the DigniCap scalp-cooling system, which helps prevent chemotherapy induced hair loss. (Emma Marie Chiang/SF Business Times)

Cancer patient Carla Thomas is a recipient of the DigniCap scalp-cooling system, which helps prevent chemotherapy induced hair loss. (Emma Marie Chiang/SF Business Times)

'Called Me Higher' Instagram series

"Called me Higher" is a Instagram photo series expressing my appreciation and gratitude for the women in my life who inspire me to pursue my passions and desires in creative storytelling and documentary journalism. Once a week I post a double exposure photo and share my thankfulness for a specific person in my life. More coming soon.

Deadly Oakland Fire

The devastating Oakland fire Friday December 2 at an underground music event in an Oakland warehouse known as the Ghost Ship killed 36 people, the deadliest structure fire in California in more than a century. These photos capture the grief, pain and sorrow felt by families, friends and the Bay Area community at a vigil held at Lake Merritt Pergola on Monday December 5, 2016. Shot for the San Francisco Business Times

Anti-Trump Protest in downtown Oakland Nov. 9, 2016

Dia de los Muertos 2016

This was my first year photographing Dia de los Muertos in San Francisco's Mission District. It was an honor to remember my passed loved ones and capture quiet moments of others doing the same. My heart sank when I saw Mr. and Mrs. Nieto and their supporters carrying the banner that read "Justice and Love for Alex Nieto" and yelling "Viva Alex Nieto." They are true fighters. I have photographed this couple many times marching in San Francisco streets and throughout their son's civil trial. We fight for the justice of all people. 

San Francisco Chinatown Program

This August I had the opportunity to document InterVarsity Christian Fellowship's San Francisco Chinatown Program, a week emersion program for Asian American college students to understand more of their families migration stories while learning the history of their ancestors stories immigrating to San Francisco Chinatown. SF Chinatown has a rich history of being a safe affordable neighborhood for Chinese and other Asian immigrants. This video recaps the program as students share about their experiences in the program.  

Neighborhood Circus

Published by the Ingleside-Excelsior Light

Story by Emma Chiang

September 2016

 Circus Automatic contortionist Katie Scarlett (left) and Inka Siefker (right) perform an act together as part of Into the Mouth of the Wolf teaser show at 915 Cayuga Ave. San Francisco, Calif. Saturday August 20, 2016. Photo by Emma Chiang

Circus Automatic contortionist Katie Scarlett (left) and Inka Siefker (right) perform an act together as part of Into the Mouth of the Wolf teaser show at 915 Cayuga Ave. San Francisco, Calif. Saturday August 20, 2016. Photo by Emma Chiang

Hidden off the main road of Cayuga Avenue sits a large building with a red painted door and gold numbers, 916 Cayuga Avenue. It’s a circus gym known as “Cayuga,” or, “The Royal Russian Kung Fu Circus Training Academy of Heavenly Mountain Sacred Lake.”

 

Cayuga is a training ground for circus performers, martial artists, aerialists, contortionists, burlesque dancers and other art forms. It is also home to the circus community of San Francisco, where artists take classes and train professionally for festivals and Bay Area shows.

 

On Saturday August 20, Circus Automatic, a group of circus performers trained in Asia, Spain and Canada hosted a teaser show called Into the Mouth of the Wolf. It was in collaboration with slam poets Joyce Lee and Jamie DeWolf.

The teaser

Into the Mouth of the Wolf is a continuation of the group’s show in October last year, Raised by Wolves. As the storytellers share their life events, circus performers interpret and visualize the narrative through contortions, hand balancing, barrel rolls, dance and movement. A lively audience of about 80 applauded after each act.

 

“It’s a work in progress,” Morgan Wilson, a fellow circus performer and guest in the audience said. “I loved the storytelling aspect because in circus there is no narrative.”

Circus in San Francisco

The circus became popular to San Francisco in 1974 when Peggy Snider and Larry Pisoni founded The Pickle Family Circus, which lead to the US’ circus renaissance movement. Ten years later, Pickle Family members Wendy Parkman and Judy Finelli (an accomplished juggler from the 60's), opened the San Francisco School for Circus Arts to train young aspiring performers, according to the Circus Center website.

 

At the end of the teaser show Saturday night, Circus Automatic performer Guji gave a toast to honor Judy Finelli for attending the show and for her dedication to the circus community in San Francisco.

 

“Without the circus school, they would have had a hard time learning what they needed,” Finelli said. “Circus Automatic is trying to make a statement in pairing both stories with circus acts. This is a breeding ground for experimental circus; they are pushing beyond what circus has been traditionally.”

 

Into the Mouth of the Wolf debuts October 13-November 13 at the Great Star Theater in San Francisco’s Chinatown, located at 636 Jackson St.

Ho'olohe Pono diptychs

Ho'olohe Pono, listen well, intently, rightly and carefully.  This summer (July 2016) I was privileged to live with the community of Waimānalo, Hawaii. I learned the value of listening to mo`olelo (stories) of the Hawaiian kānaka maoli (native people) and kūpuna (elders). Their love for the aina (land), o'hana and 'IO (creator) enriched me. I have been challenged and strengthened by the aloha (love) and hospitality of this community. I have compiled a few diptics of my time on the Island of O'ahu. View more photos here.