Valerie Chiang


This is my photography and personal blog.
Instagram: @ninebagatelles

David Plowden

Photographs from the mid-20th century taken in small towns throughout the American Midwest. I’ve lately been reading Desert and Plain, the Mountains and the River: A Celebration of Rural America, a collaboration between Plowden and author Berton Roueché. Roueché describes their work together as something that “reveals a rural America that is lost to most of us” and offers “an intimate view of our civilization as a living thing.”

Just some updates: I’m currently working on setting up my own natural light studio to do some model tests and portraits, and in a few weeks I’ll be starting my new project/photo essay in a town about 2 hours away from Los Angeles in the California desert.

Portrait of Chloe Fuller, an LA-based blues and folk musician. Valerie Chiang. August 2014.
Check out her music, she’s a very talented singer/songwriter! We shot at the house of a lady who was good friends with Andy Warhol and had some of his original artwork on her walls.

Portrait of Chloe Fuller, an LA-based blues and folk musician. Valerie Chiang. August 2014.

Check out her music, she’s a very talented singer/songwriter! We shot at the house of a lady who was good friends with Andy Warhol and had some of his original artwork on her walls.

Grandfalls, Texas. Valerie Chiang. August 2014.

Grandfalls, Texas. Valerie Chiang. August 2014.

"Photography is an elegiac art, a twilight art. Most subjects photographed are, just by virtue of being photographed, touched with pathos. All photographs are memento mori. To take a photograph is to participate in another person’s (or thing’s) mortality, vulnerability, mutability. Precisely by slicing out this moment and freezing it, all photographs testify to time’s relentless melt.”

Susan Sontag, from On Photography

Whitten Sabbatini

From There’s Worse Things Than Being Alone

"I believe the photographer’s attitude decides what the photograph will be like. All great photos are free of arrogance. There are arrogant photographers who take very good pictures, because they have acquired artistic skills, but in photos like that you usually miss the life. What you see instead is a reflection of the photographer himself. The photographers I think highly of are people who want to forget themselves."

Wim Wenders, from Written in the West

I did an interview with Aint-Bad Magazine about my new (and first!) small series As The Dust Settles. These were taken on my trip to China this summer — I did not intend to create a project out of these photographs but as I was scanning and editing them, I noticed they loosely fit together into a quiet portrait of a beautiful yet still struggling country. 

You can read the interview and see more photographs here. Big thanks to koryjeankingsley and all the folks over at Aint-Bad.

"Where Shore set out to document, more contemporary photographers seek to mythologize the ordinary, to place a grand metaphor before the content itself. Christy Lange describes American Surfaces as falling “somewhere between a ‘visual diary’ and a social document - a record of ‘what the age we were living in looked like.’ It is both about the culture that Shore encountered and his encounter with that culture.” Blogosphere and Instagram road trip photography more often than not swings to the far end of that divide, choosing to exhibit a modern youth culture without engaging critically with it.” 

From Westward Bound: Issues With Road Trip Photography, a very good essay by Matthew Flores. Read the rest of it here. He talks about a lot of the things I’ve been thinking about recently and he says it a lot better than I ever could.

Beautiful portraits by John Myers made from 1972-79.