John Yuyi, Creator
Can you talk about your background a bit? What was growing up in Taiwan like? Can you explain the culture there?
ummm.. it's a very safe and simple country. We are not too rich, but we are quite developed, so even though we are small, but we can absorb a lot of informations from the world. and we are all quite educated. everyone goes to uni which is a little bit weird. but asian parents have this weird and conservative thoughts. we all need to go to good high school and nice uni. And I think because our education way makes our way of thinking more narrow. We are not brave enough to do unusual things. And ppl more judgemental and critical. Few years ago, I feel like ppl here like to see ppl fail. But i don't feel that strong now.
You started off painting and sketching in traditional, Chinese style and now have moved to digital and surreal arts -- can you explain that transition a bit? How did you get there? I know you started off with a collection of swimsuits and have recently returned to that medium. What has each style allowed you to communicate and how do the messages differ?
when i was a kid, I started to draw and paint..etc but not particularly in chinese style. and before uni, I am more concentrate in drawing and sketching skill, I think it's also another thing in taiwan, we love drawing so parents sent you to drawing class and it's more focus on how skillful you can do, instead of your creative thought. So after I knew more about different world and thought more international. I changed the way I do things.
I know you lived in New York for a bit. What did working with something as corporate as Vogue and interning with Jason Wu teach you about the world of art and life as a creative? Did it at all show you what you wanted and didn't want for your career?
I am working for VOGUE taiwan, well it actually means a lot for me. the time I was working for Jason Wu taught me a lot, not in creative way, but I saw how they run in this industry and my supervisor is super kind to me. I learned a lot. but also I know I am not the material for 9-5 job. and the assistant job in VOGUE also taught me a lot, I learned how they shoot an editorial. and also the supervisor in Vogue is so kind for me. they are both very important for me.
The relationship between the Internet, youth culture and the body is one that you seemingly explore heavily through your work -- can you talk about your thoughts on the latter? What about the Internet both scares and inspires you?
umm with body... Body is the thing I like, it's a canvas, it'a a unique canvas with soul and you can't find the same one in the world. and reflect the ppl you shoot. I think internet are my inspiration, my moodpboard, my reference...I can't find things scare me, maybe just too addicted and everything looks perfect on internet but actually in real life it's not !?
What're your struggles as an artist? Do you ever have self doubt? How do you deal with the latter?
oh yes I still don't consider that I'm an artist. I'm just doing the projects I wanna do, I think it's too heavy. I don't consider that I am a photographer too. all these titles are too heavy. I fell stressed. of course I have self doubt. It's all the time. I know what I'm doing. I know I am not genius, but I feel quite ok that at least I did the things I wanna do, then no regrets.
What about fashion interests you the most? To what extent do you think that fashion should be considered art?
Fashion is amazing. I love the detail they design, I love how they style. I love analyse the trend happening right now, or guess the trend after. it's attractive thing. I will definitely fashion is art. absolutely! a strong setting fashion editorial is art. a crazily amazing styling is art. a decent or dramatic collection is art. so many things in fashion are art.
Would you ever get a tattoo?
I have a " GIRL" tattoo, I wanna get a "BOY" in near future.
To what extent is your identity/or identity in general, tied to the existence of the internet?
umm super high. ppl know me by social media. and social media is also my platform to post my projects.