I Started A New B&W Instagram!

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Organizer Maru Mora at a Worker and Immigrant Solidarity march, February 12, 2017, Burlington WA [photo by Sharon H. Chang]
As an artivist who likes to create using mixed media I’ll be honest–it can be a little tricky figuring out how to publish, share, and integrate my work. Truth is I can’t say I’ve figured out much yet. The good news though is that with today’s tech there’s so much accessibility, so many platforms and options, and so much room to experiment! Which is super fun for someone like me who literally can’t stay confined to a single category, platform, label or genre.

In particular, recently I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about cyber-exhibition, experimenting with stylization, and curating my activist photography from the last couple years. This line of thinking resulted in me, about a week ago, launching a NEW Black & White Instagram (IG) account @schangphotography (with the dream of a real exhibition some day?). The account is a high contrast display of my images from on-the-ground actions, marches, protests, vigils, rallies, etc. since 2016 (which is when I picked up a “real” camera again after many years).

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Blackout Friday, Nov 25, 2016, Seattle WA [photo by Sharon H Chang]
The more I photograph, research, and follow other photographers, the more I start to think that post-processing is often half the battle. Of course capture and composition are at the center and without quality, raw ingredients, no amount of processing can save you. But photo editing, I am starting to appreciate, can be an art in and of itself. In the case of my new IG, high contrast black-and-white editing is really powerful for highlighting the resistance; bringing forward passion and feeling; portraying the power of everyday people being activists and fierce revolutionaries.

It’s worth noting that high contrast black-and-white photography is a style that has long been used in this way by others. Still, my attempts at the same stand apart as being my own, my unique effort, through my lens, as a woman of color photographer in this moment in time and history. This is all to say I think it’s worthwhile to proclaim out loud: I’m still learning, I’m still experimenting, I’m still figuring out how to weave my photography and writing all together, and I want to share it all with you. I have ideas, I have instincts and ultimately I think it’s all flowing the way it’s meant to. I hope you’ll join my creative journey of discovery and follow my new exhibit on IG @schangphotography!

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