Interview with Ye Rin Mok

Ye Rin Mok is a Korean born, Los Angeles based photographer. Her photographs have a dreamy and quiet thoughtfulness to them, as if she’s allowing you to peek into a private moment or fantasy. The muted colors and simple compositions make you feel like you’re in a familiar place. Her minimalist style draws interest by creating immediate and straight forward images that also stir a number of emotions in the viewer. The familiar place, the nostalgic feeling. She’s showing us the details many look over. Ye Rin’s photographs have appeared in the film Hard Candy and she has a variety of clients that include Bust, Dwell, Nylon, Spin, and W.

Aida: Photographers are generally considered observers, but your photographs have a true sense of that. Whether you’re shooting portraits, landscapes, or various details/objects, it seems as though you’ve captured a quiet moment from far away. Do you choose to have a certain level of distance from your subjects?

Ye Rin Mok: I don’t intentionally choose to but I think it’s more natural and comfortable for me. I guess in that way, my personality comes through the photos I make, I’m more of an observer or listener in social situations.

A: What initially turned you on to photography?

YRM: Images made more sense to me than words, and I wasn’t good at drawing. My dad was also a serious hobbyist, so we always had cameras around.

A: Are you the kind of photographer that has a camera at all times or do you prefer to wait till inspiration strikes or you think of a concept?

YRM: I always carry a camera with me, but I’ve gotten more selective as to what I shoot these days, which I dont think necessarily is a good thing. I like to shoot spontaneously, not plan things out too much.

A: What do you prefer to shoot?

YRM: Lately I’ve been into to taking pictures of everyday, common things around people’s living spaces.

A: Are there any photographers who have particularly inspired you and your work?

YRM: Helen Van Meene, Jason Fulford, Saul Leiter

A: If you could photograph anyone or anything tomorrow, what or who would it be?

YRM: I would like to photograph candid portraits of dancers from Mariinsky or Bolshoi ballet.

A: Where do you see yourself 5 years from now?

YRM: I see myself continue doing things I love, photographing, taking ballet classes, hopefully traveling more.

To see more of Ye Rin’s work, please visit:

♥ aida

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