Jayden So


Photography / Visual design 

What are you looking forward to the most in your first year at UNSW?

I can’t wait to make new friends who aren’t just from my local area but from various parts of Sydney

How’d you get started as a photographer?

I started getting into photography when I was about 13, where I would always take my parent’s phones to capture random shots of my surroundings, such as the spiral bindings of a book or the shadows beneath a wharf. Since then, I have continued to capture photographs on my phone but it was not until 2018 that I purchased my first camera with the intention of undertaking Photography as the medium for my HSC Visual Arts major project.

Tell us a bit about your creative process! What influences or inspires your work?

When capturing photos, I’m really decisive about what I capture. I tend to only capture images that I think are ‘wallpaper’ worthy. This has become increasingly key to my creative process since I recently began shooting film. When editing my photographs I always focus on the photos individually, spending a good amount of time editing each one. A practice I found that has really helped my editing process is returning to an edited photo the following day and making adjustments if needed. This allows for a fresh perspective of the image and makes minor flaws more identifiable. Recently I’ve started adding more depth to my photographs by incorporating words and presenting them in an editorial or zine style. This new presentation style provides my photographs with another layer of meaning and produces more of an artistic feel within my photographic medium.  

Mood boards and Instagram saves play a major role in influencing my work and what I capture. They allow me to not only save locations that I think would make a great photograph but they also expose me to the perspectives of other creators and their editing styles. Posters that surround the city, particularly those advertising streetwear and art exhibitions, also play a crucial role in helping me create my layout designs as there aren’t many photographers in Sydney that undertake this style of presentation.

What do you love most about creating?

Making many friends within the photography community is one of the things I love most about creating. Whilst creating, I’ve met so many creative people from portrait photographers, to cinemograph creators, to film photographers and so on. Surrounding myself with fellow creators has influenced me to continue creating and focus on my work rather than following trends and the opinions of others. Building friendships with photographers of a variety of different styles has allowed me to experiment with other styles whilst having someone I can turn to for help. Overall, I really love the collaborative nature of creating and that creators are willing to help each other if needed.

Favourite project that you’ve worked on so far? Why?

I haven’t undertaken any professional projects yet however a personal project that I’ve been working on for the past month has got to be my favourite project so far. It involves a collection of zine style pages that I have been developing which will be released on my Instagram account later this month. I’ve really enjoyed working on this project as it has been challenging me creatively. I’ve always relied on inspirations for my work and having to develop my own artistic vision with limited guidance and inspiration has led me to be more experimental with my work. Ultimately, by working on this project I hope to develop this style and make it more popular within the community. 

What does the future hold for you? Do you have any special projects you’re excited about?

Currently my studies will remain to be my main priority but I will still continue to pursue photography as a hobby. I have a few projects lined up for this year from brand shoots to visual designing, and I’m excited to put my name out there in the community and hopefully work on more projects with brands and companies this year. 

Got anything you just want to share with the world? (E.g. random shower thoughts, something deep or even a quick ramble)

Something I like to tell myself when I experience creative blocks is ‘Don’t follow trends but retrospect as to why you began creating in the first place’

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