© Hee Jin Kang (Dad’s 80s TV and map of Korea, 2009)

side bends?


© Hee Jin Kang, Dad’s exercises 2009

cocky nemesis?


© Hee Jin Kang, Mom’s kitchen (or, new vocabulary words), 2009

red wing portfolio


The Red Wing project has been added to my website.  Rejoice!

Previous posts about this series:

no more worries
some background

republican eagle article
tractor then, tractor now
4×5 photographs
my first state fair
more 4×5 photos
more 35mm from state fair


These photographs were all taken in the summer of 2008, in Red Wing, Minnesota, the town where my parents met in the early 1970’s.  If I were a book, Red Wing, Minnesota would be my preface.
I went to Red Wing to explore the alternate reality of what my life could have been.  I photographed old friends of my parents but also took pictures of strangers. I photographed farmers, townspeople, and young artists, storefronts, farmland, vacant lots, and interior spaces. For me, photographing Red Wing is like breathing life into a faded snapshot.

new year, new gear


Ebony 45s

Oh boy, I’m thinking of buying a new camera.  Currently I shoot with a cherrywood Wista 45DX.  It’s adorable but I need something more serious.  For all my serious photographing.

I want the Ebony 45s in mahogany.  Only 1.75 kg!  And it’s not a folding camera, hooray, I am sick of having to fold and unfold my 4×5 when traveling.  I’d rather just pull it out of my case and pop it onto the tripod without any hassle.

Of course, the Ebony 45s is not cheap. $2,650 – ouch.  But it will inspire me.

Other nice 4×5 cameras to consider:

Chamonix 045n-1
K. B. Canham 4×5

more from red wing


All photographs © Hee Jin Kang 2008

tic toc


I’m back home in Brooklyn.  Dropped off all my film at LTI this morning so now it’s the waiting game…

P.S. Sarah Palin, WTF?

camera in situ


Proof that I am working:

no more worries


All flustered, I arrived at the Anderson Center Saturday evening. Flight delays, of course (thanks to American Airlines). Plus I forgot to print out a map of the area before leaving home and also neglected to charge my cellphone the night before (was I willing myself to get lost?). With only the Alamo guy’s directions at hand “take the 55 East to the 52 South.” Umm… “then there should be some signs to Red Wing”. OK! The result? Me driving around in circles in my white rental car on Highway 61 with F. on the phone trying to direct me from his googled map while my cellphone kept beeping that I was running out of juice. “Are you at the intersection of 61 and Highway 19?” Yes I am! Around and around. Only to discover I was at the intersection of 61 and County Road 19. Need to drive a little further to hit Highway 19. Woops.

No matter. When I enter the residence, I immediately feel at home here. The building and grounds are beautifully restored. The whole place is photogenic.

© Hee Jin Kang 2008

Then the worries kick in.

I worry about my equipment. Did I bring the right gear? Did I bring enough? And then I decide to let those kinds of stresses go. I just have to work with what I have. My 4×5. My little (oft unreliable) Contax T2. And a digital for snaps. That’s it. Vincent Laforet I am not, though I am duly impressed (via Shoot the Blog).

I worry about the enforced creativity inherent in doing artist residencies. Then I let that go too. I’m a resourceful girl, I can figure something out if the right kind of inspiration doesn’t strike, whatever that may be. If nothing else, there are nice bike paths here, free bikes for our use, a cook who takes care of meals, a stocked fridge, a new town, a state fair, cows, butterflies, red squirrels, turtles.

I worry about my natural inclination against adventurousness. I like to try new things but sometimes it’s a struggle to get out of my comfort zone. Do I lack curiosity? Am I afraid of what’s beyond? Or just plain lazy? I have to let all that go too. Enjoy the process and the experience.

Good pictures might come from this trip but they might not. Just have to let go…

woodstock learning


I’m in the process of going through my negatives from my residency at Woodstock. Here are a couple of new images from the series so far.

© Hee Jin Kang 2008

I tried to capture a certain atmosphere that slowly revealed itself to me during the second week I was there.

During my final evaluation, I discussed the fact that working in a place that didn’t necessarily resonate with me personally was a challenge, particularly after working on projects that came from intensely personal motivations. But as I go through the imagery, I think I might have made an interesting group of photographs. It does make me want to go back to that area and shoot some more.