Our family portrait courtesy of Terry Richardson
About four years ago a friend of mine from luxury brand Diesel approached me about a book they were working on with notorious photographer Terry Richardson. He was coming to Hong Kong and wanted to capture its sights and sounds from the local food and streets, to of course its people. When he asked if myself and my family would agree to be photographed by the legend, I jumped at the chance (and secretly prayed that I wouldn’t have to take off my clothes).
We planned to shoot at my house late one evening and I invited a few people over to meet him. When he finally arrived a few hours late I was amazed to see how shy he was. He ate his dinner quietly in the corner before getting to work. Once he was behind the lens, he completely changed – his face lit up and a naughty mischievous smile never left his face. My mother, who fortunately had never seen his work before, was completely charmed. If that’s not a testament to a person’s good character, I don’t know what is.
And now four years on, our portrait along with 55 other provoking images have been compiled into a book called Hong Kong Terry Richardson. The book was launched at ART HK 11 last night alongside an exhibition of his photos, sponsored by Diesel. Inside the book you will find the smells, flavours and personalities that encapsulate Hong Kong along with a few familiar faces including Maggie Cheung, Daniel Wu, Josie Ho, Hilary Tsui, and my personal favourite, Melvis! While our portrait is by no means the most exciting, he managed to capture a fun and rare moment that I will never forget.
We also got a chance to speak with Terry and ask him a few questions about his experiences in Hong Kong. Read on to find out more and see a preview of some of my favourite the images in the book.
Why did you decide to work on a book of photographs on Hong Kong?
In December 2007, Diesel invited me to come to Hong Kong for an exhibition of images I took in Rio de Janeiro, which we called “From Rio to Hong Kong.” It was my first time in Hong Kong, so naturally I wanted to capture the essence of the local culture. It was a blast.
Who was the most memorable person you photographed for the book?
The “Golden Couple,” Brenda and Kai Bong Chau definitely stood out. They had such a strong and unique personality. I’m also a fan of martial arts so I enjoyed shooting Gordon Liu and Danny Chan, who is a dead ringer for Bruce Lee.
What is your favourite picture in the book?
I love them all!
Who did you want for the book and couldn’t get?
It would been nice to meet Jackie Chan in person. Good thing, I managed to get a photo with his wax statue at Madame Tussaud’s!
Terry with Bruce Lee lookalike, Danny Chan
Actor Daniel Wu
A stalwart on the Hong Kong night scene – Melvis!
Supermodel Qi Qi
HONG KONG Terry Richardson is available exclusively at the Diesel Booth at the ART HK 11 for HK$800 (regular edition, 300 copies) and HK$1,200 (limited edition, 30 copies). www.hongkongartfair.com