Behind the camera.

Qi Wong is a photographer with a keen eye for capturing and creating expressive vibrance in seemingly simple shots. Multicultural and bilingual herself, Qi has travelled the world taking pictures and building a worldliness of cultural immersion that lives in her art.

Qi’s work speaks deeply to the dynamism of humanity: the individual as a manifestation of nature, and the individual as a part of – and sometimes isolated within – an industrialized modern world.

We sat down with Qi to look at a couple of her nature-tuned photographs, and to hear a little from the artist behind the camera…

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Qi: This was taken at Sepulveda dam last winter at 8AM. It was a beautiful sunny day, and we spotted this beautiful black and red bird sitting on a branch looking out.

Angela: I remember you said that this looked like Chinese paintings. What about it looks that way?

Qi: It’s hard for me to say exactly what has me feel that – I think it’s the simplicity of the branches with a single solitary bird.

Angela: This is an unnamed photo – why is that?

Qi: I don’t name my photographs anymore. I am learning to let others decide for themselves what this photo means to them. My photography is a gift – I feel like I am claiming it for myself if I name it, imposing my feelings about it on the viewer. You can call it whatever you’re calling it right now.

Qi: This image was taken in Los Angeles, at the Sepulveda dam around noon. We were very tired at this point and decided to cut through the small path we were on to find a place to rest – a field of yellow flowers opened up in front of us and this magical sanctuary of nature revealed itself. I put the camera up and clicked.

Angela: I remember you saying about this one that you did a lot of editing afterwards – yet it doesn’t look overly stylized or edited to me. What exactly did you do to it?

Qi: In the original photo, the field is a much greener – I brought out and highlighted the yellow. Also, the sky is more of a natural blue in the original, whereas here the sky is almost a pastel blue, with the hue around the photo to add a dreamlike effect.

Angela: This is also an unnamed photo – same idea as with the first?

Qi: Yes – and for this one, I truly couldn’t find a word to name this photo. It speaks too much to me.

What do you think of these photographs?

What do they express to you?

What might you name them?

Join the discussion in the comments and share your thoughts – and keep an eye out for Part 2!

And check out to see more from Qi!

Angela Cross

Author Angela Cross is a vocalist, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist. She’s also a passionate and ever-curious soul – learn more about Angela at her artist page!

And if you haven’t yet, be sure to check out her latest album, Songs from the Girl.

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