28th July 2019

Culture of Reservation

I travelled through Japan and South Korea earlier this year and discovered myself in a different light, internally and externally.

It seems to be on trend for Melbournians to travel to destinations like Japan and there’s a reason for it: it lives up to its hype. I think there’s something there for everyone. For me, that was to find inspiration in the abundant creativity there.

There was an ominous feeling walking through the streets through winter, when capturing the daily landscapes. It was so easy to get lost in a crowd but find a sense of harmony on your own. The culture of reservation was a change of scenery for me, I got to explore myself as an introvert in a serene manner. This is what led me to spend my time focusing on photographing and observing the people, trends and cultural aspects that struck out to me.

I was going through a lot of personal challenges when I embarked on the trip but I found a form of peace I’d never experienced before. It was the first time in my life where I felt like I fully blended in somewhere, call it a reversal of the feeling explored in Sofia Coppola’s Lost in Translation.

As someone who’s grown up as a second generation migrant, I feel like I don’t fully belong in my own cultural community and have a distance with many spaces in Australia. The trip was symbolic towards my own personal journey. However, there were aspects I encountered during the trip which made me appreciate the life I have back in Melbourne. It gave me a refreshed outlook that I was excited to share back home.

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