Friday, 13 April 2012
Five more questions... with Benjamin Von Wong
Von Wong Does Europe from LightExploring on Vimeo.
Since our last interview back in October last year, Canadian photographer Benjamin Von Wong has been doing all sorts of amazing thing, including organizing a crowd funding for a photography tour of Europe. [See video above :)]
Often we see someone "living the dream" and wonder how the hell they manage it. This time I decided to find out...
1. How did you know you were ready to make the jump from day job to full time photographer?
I do not think I was ready haha! I decided to quit my job because I had finally figured out that although my job was comfortable and happy, it was NOT something I wanted to do for the rest of my life.
It was a spontaneous decision and being myself, I didn't quite bother thinking too much about what I was doing. Initially, I had planned to pursue an MBA so I actually sat down and power-studied for a couple months and got a pretty decent GMAT score but by then, life had thrown me a couple curveballs and I realized that pursuing an MBA was not something I yet wanted or was ready for.
2. You always seem to face each new challenge full on with no fear. Where do you find the courage and the motivaton?
I think that when you think too much you give the opportunity for fear and doubt to creep in. I'm not sure if I would consider myself courageous so much as just being blindly optimistic! I believe that life has a way of working itself out and good things come out of the bad ones, you just have to be able to see the opportunities when they come waving! I don't know, I don't really have very much to loose right now since I'm young with no responsibilities so... why not try something new?
3. Von Wong does Europe is a very exciting project. How did you come up with the idea? Do you prefer for projects like this to be planned in detail or more general with room for last minute inclusion?
I think the idea came to me spontaneously one day and was forgotten in the back of my mind... it resurfaced when chatting with a friend in Toronto while studying for an MBA and she encoraged me by saying that I really had the potential to do something like that. Since I was going through a breakup, quit my job and generally had nothing scheduled for the next couple months it seemed like the perfect thing to do.
I pitched the project to Erwan, we wrote the project blurb, contacted artists and filmed the intro video within a week and I ran off to Israel (check the poor planning right there) where I continued to plan things long distance for the two following weeks.
Upon my return, we met up, got the whole thing finalized and running within 3 days. There was maybe one month of planning that went in before the launch of the project and we are still putting things together now (we have no itinerary settled for the middle of the trip yet!!)
So... no. Nothing's planned. I don't think I am capable of planning. Do I think it's going to work out? Hell yeah! Do I think things could change? Definitely. Am I worried? Nope.
4. What is the one piece of photographic equipment [besides your camera] that you'd never want to be without?
My laptop lol... with the internet. It connects me to everything and everyone.
5. Your images [and attitude in general] are inspiring for a lot of photographers. Who inspires you?
I'm afraid I don't have any ç model to share. That being said, I saw this video online today thanks to one of my fans Dan Pham which I think sums up my view on life right now:
For more info on Von Wong does Europe click here.
Thanks to Benjamin for taking time for this interview. :)