There’s something satisfying about seeing traditional artistic mediums come to life through digital forms as well. Photographer, designer, illustrator and multidisciplinary designer Jo Cheung is a creative who continues to explore her talents in different mediums. We first collaborated with her in our Pre-Loved Style Edit at Hula where she was the photographer, and we had so much fun together! We caught up with Jo to talk about her new illustration project, other creative endeavours and what’s to come.
Is there something you can share about you that we don’t know?
Apart from practicing art, design, and photography, I used to do sound mixing with ambient sounds collective. During my spare time, I also play the guitar.
When did your creative journey begin?
I started discovering photography and observation skills in 2007 with a tiny compact camera - Canon PowerShot, snapshot was my starting point. From time to time, I handcrafted birthday cards for my best friends and realised that I had an interest in design. I decided to apply for design courses and had the chance to help my friend who was studying brand and styling courses for an editorial photography project and so began my art, design, and photography journey.
How do you juggle your different creative interests?
I think I have my phases towards different creative streams, design has always been my main career, but photography is my life. Aside from commercial work, I enjoy photography as my own interest. I was lucky to have opportunities right before covid in 2019, when I spent a year working on more fashion photography, collaborating with brands like LUÜNA Naturals, KIN and more. When I get a break, I tend to explore other media of creatives - like digital illustration, because I find it healing.
“Expressing my emotions through my creative practice is very important to me.”
From illustration to photography, traditional forms to digital, what is your approach to creating new work with different mediums?
I'm an experimental person, so I don't have a fixed practice on creating imagery or illustrations. I like to draw with different mixed media, i.e. the postcards are collaged with water color painting and digital imagery.
Are there any personal changes or learnings that you’ve had since the pandemic in the past year?
Being grateful is the key lesson I learnt. When the pandemic hit, I lost job opportunities overseas and relocated back to Hong Kong. I am grateful for the time spent in my own city and the new doors that have opened for me. I see things positively and understand that things happen for a reason, this is also how I met KIN. Finding Inner peace and gratitude are my new goals.
“Being grateful is the key lesson...”
How important is having a creative outlet for your mental health and wellbeing?
Expressing my emotions through my creative practice is VERY important to me. It's similar to detoxing/fasting in daily life, washing out your negative energies, in order to create more room for wonderful creative ideas.
Do you have any daily rituals that you practice regularly?
I do simple stretching when I get up, journal for 10 mins by writing affirmations and goals for the day. That calms my mind and sets intentions for my day. Journaling is definitely a life changing practice for me. I record and notice that my emotions change from time to time, so I am able to reflect and become a better me.
What does slow living mean to you?
Setting boundaries is kinda slow living for me. Sometimes saying no to things that makes me uncomfortable is a way out for my emotional rollercoaster. Also, eat more greens and take deep breaths.
Some of your hopes and dreams for the next five years?
Hoping to live abroad and explore my career path in photography and design, maybe new creative streams too. Of course, I want to expand my production company in Europe. :)
We hope you enjoyed getting to know more about Jo, you can follow her here!