Earlier I got invited to an interview by Nick from Shoutout Colorado Magazine. Somehow they found my profile on instagram and I was quite interested in their questions as well. So here come my answers.
Hi Xinran, what inspires you?
This question reminds me of a quote by Ansel Adams:
“You don’t make a photograph just with a camera. You bring to the act of photography all the pictures you have seen, the books you have read, the music you have heard, the people you have loved.”
In my understanding, art creation is a process of exposing my inner self, and sharing my feelings with others at the exact moment. With that being said, I can be influenced and inspired by a lot of different unrelated stuff in my life.
For example, I originally come from a mid-size city in east China, which is in one of the richest and most developed areas in the country and is also not so close to the nature. Therefore, when I decided to move to Colorado for school, one important reason was that here is so different from where I was born and raised, and I was thrilled to experience something new. However, the mother nature has always been so generous and is always a source of my inner peace and creative desires.
In addition, I had been learning painting for over a decade when I was a kid. When I gradually realized that painting is just a different way of inner expression than photography, and the two forms of art are not too different by nature, I have been learning how to obtain my inspirations from other types of art and combine the strengths of different art styles.
Of course, my ambitions, my eager to try new things, and my friends all have been inspiring me a lot. All these drive me to grow to be a better person in general and photography is just accelerating the process.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Currently I am working full-time as a Financial Controller in a mid-size corporation in Denver (sorry not a full-time photographer yet), which is basically an upper-level accounting position in the company. I sometimes have photography gigs but that’s not the focus of my life at this point, and I do have the plan to expand my photography studio in the next stage of my life. It may seem weird because my two career directions are just so separated. However, my education from DU business school and my experience in the real business world are in fact benefiting me by leading me to think like a real business owner. Thinking about my own strengths and uniqueness helps me understand myself and figure out my directions.
On the other side, I am learning a lot that’s not taught in school or anywhere else when I research and explore opportunities and make plans for my future business. For example, I never had to handle marketing or SEO stuff, which I found to be the biggest obstacle for me in my business development. I am still on the way and I know I will get there at some point. It just takes time to try out and test my ideas.
Read the full article published online in the below link: