We pride ourselves with collaborating with some of the most talented photographers around. One such person who has gained immense respect and admiration for his raw portraits as well as his commercial shoots is Chuan Looi. The pint size photographer’s work first appeared in HANGER SS Aw12 Issue, in a fashion spread called ‘The Leather Pack Rebel’. Its success led to another collaboration the following year that was titled ‘Club Kids’. The latter was a more upbeat, vibrant portrayal of the individuals in the fashion underground scene, while the predecessor shoot was a moodier, edgier, reflection of them.
Since then, Chuan Looi who has been working hard for months capturing some of Malaysia’s most famous personalities finally showcased his first solo exhibition, ’Lid + Let Live‘on Jan 17 at Avenue K, KL. The photographer’s debut exhibition features models like Amber Chia, Danielle Graham and even Malaysian rock legend, Amy Search. The launch was attended by Lee Sinjie (from the movie, The Eye), Carmen Soo and a load of other personalities and fashion designers that he has worked with for this exhibition and previously for their campaign lookbooks.
The exhibition was a tribute to the kind of images that Chuan Looi is not only famed for but a definition for what portrait photography should really mean and reflect. Take away all the embellishment of post production, digital alteration that turns the people in front of the lenses flawless and perfect and what you see is their true beauty – imperfection and all. The black and white images proved to be more captivating as Chuan Looi really proved his title as one of the forerunners in the photography industry and his deft skills to highlight his subjects’ inner beauty. The collection of larger-than-life visuals was Chuan Looi’s way of redefining fashion and portrait photography.
Lid and Let Live was held in Avenue K, KL from Jan 18-24 2014.