The word from La Founder: When I was working with Ivan for the opening of his new restaurant Loca La Table, we were looking for a specialist photographer to capture the location and the dishes. At that time, I was already following Joann’s work for while so I suggested that we contact her. We met around Chinese new year, and discovered we had a lot in commun (She is Canadian, originally Chinese, food addict, and was getting married to a Burgundy French guy the same year). She is not only a very talented photographer but also a kind, passionate and fun person. I loved working with her, her food pictures are beautiful and make you wanna grab a fork right away, her travel pictures make you want to jump on a plane at once. And every now and then, we talk about a new dumplings joint to discover and grab some xiaolongbao together.
Your astrological sign:
A special feature about you:
Je suis petite mais j’ai un bon appétit! (I am small but I have a great appetite!)
Your credo/mantra in life:
Why you love your job/craft? Or why you have chosen this path?
Before working as a food & travel photographer, I was working for the Canadian government in Immigration. Cooking and photographing at home was my creative outlet- something I looked forward to doing every day at work. One day, a local business owner asked me to photograph her products. I said yes even though I had no idea what I was doing. After doing that first job, I knew this was something I wanted to do. I love tell stories about how food connects people around the world. It’s the way I learn about other cultures. Through my job, I’ve learned a lot about myself as well. I also chose this path as I thought if I surround myself with food, I’ll never be a starving artist 😉
A special project you loved doing:
I’m currently photographing a book on women. It’s a depart from my usual and I’m learning to tell stories through portraits. The best part has been meeting these extraordinary women and listening to their stories.
An anecdote you would like to share:
I’m always occupied with thoughts of what i’m going to eat.
A special person/encounter, or a mentor/partner:
My tiger sister Jackie Kai Ellis, she always pushes, and inspires me to be my best self.
Do cookbooks count?
The Joy Luck Club, Gattaca, and I re-watch Love Actually every Christmas.
Favorite TV show:
Currently, The Americans.
Favorite song/music artist to listen to for work:
It depends on the type of work I’m doing, but if it’s photographing food, definitely I’ll make love to you by Boys II Men
Favorite song to dance to:
I try to avoid dancing, especially in public 😛
That’s such a difficult question to ask a food photographer! I’d probably say any type of noodles/pasta.
Favorite city, a place you love in that city:
Paris. La Fontaine de Belleville- where I meet up with friends for apero.
Stop it with the difficult questions 😛 In Paris, I’d have to say Mokonuts, owned.
Favorite brand or brand of the moment, and why:
Apple? Since i rely on it so much these days.
A guilty pleasure
Boxed Mac & Cheese (Kraft Dinner). Even though I Iive in the land of cheese, I still have a spot in my heart for that fake orange powder cheese.