Luke Goh (@seathebreezee) is a Singaporean lad who is an avid traveller and explorer of new places. And of course, taking plenty of photographs along the way.
For Luke, photography started out as nothing more than a passion. Using his parents’ phones, he would snap anything and everything that fascinated him. As he went along, he started getting into cameras, and became more serious about photography, eventually seeing it evolve from a mere hobby into a full-time job. We pick his brains as to this journey of his, and what makes him tick.
Let’s start off with your rather unique Instagram handle, @seathebreezee. How did you come up with that name?
Well, it’s simply because I really love blue a lot; I love the sea, I love the breeze. There was this day when I was quite down, so I headed to Keppel Bay, which is quite near where I stay. The sea was really beautiful, and there was a breeze. At that moment I took out my phone and just decided to change my Instagram handle.
I see. Your handle is actually quite unique. Because for other photographers or Instagrammers, their handle is usually linked to their own name, or surname.
Yeah! I’ve considered changing it, but perhaps not so soon.
Do you mostly go out and shoot by yourself, or in a group?
I started out shooting by myself. I began to shoot with friends when I got more involved in Instagram, but they tend to lean towards iPhone photography, whereas for me I am a bit of a mix [between iPhone and camera].
Would you prefer to shoot with a camera or an iPhone?
Well, while cameras can definitely do more [than a phone], I find iPhone photography to be slightly more convenient. Whenever I go anywhere, my phone is always with me, whereas the camera is not.
For your photography shoots, do you plan your itinerary, such as where to go and explore?
I tend to plan the first location, but following that it’s quite impromptu. Even in just one location, you can take numerous shots from different perspectives, different angles.
Do you usually go to iconic / well-known places to shoot, or do you prefer to explore more unknown places?
I prefer unknown places, or places that are not very well-known to the general public. So the photos you take are more [exotic].
So such shoots will usually take between half a day to a full day?
Normally it takes around a whole day. On average, I’ll spend about three days out of every week shooting.
Could you share about what kind of events you’ve been to?
Luke: Before I went into a company to work, I was a freelance photographer, and I shot for a few influencers. I’ve been to a Uniqlo event, as well as food tasting, like Harry’s Bar.
You say you were a freelance photographer. What made you decide to become a full-time photographer?
It’s really passion. I was using a Canon 550, which is a rather low-quality camera. With that camera, I couldn’t shoot events, or go into full-time photography. After I changed cameras, I could finally display this passion of mine. A company was also willing to sponsor me, and they lent me a camera. That really taught me a lot, shooting so many events.
Being a full-time photographer, it’s not exactly a “stable” job, is it?
That’s correct. I do face difficulties in this. For example, there are times where I can’t get any projects. It’s really a waiting game; it tests your patience a lot. Another example: sometimes clients won’t like your plans, your photographs. So yes, we do have to accept all these. But of course it has its good moments as well.
What are some of the challenges that you face as a photographer?
Luke: For me it’s more of the financial side. For example, when I shoot for events, I need to rent equipment from the company. At times, having already agreed to take up a job, I realise I don’t have the money to rent the equipment. Thus I have to use whatever I already have to shoot.
What equipment do you usually use?
My camera is a Canon 5D Mark III. When I used to shoot events I had a fish-eye lens. I also have a wide angle 14mm and 50mm lenses, as well as a tripod.
Other than your tripod, do you use a stabiliser? Because a lot of people are using stabilisers now.
No, I only use a tripod, whether it’s for my camera or iPhone.
Could you share what are your most memorable moments using the OOWA lenses?
I really this picture I took of the Esplanade Bridge:
I feel that the OOWA lens enhances the sharpness of the image. I don’t know how you guys do it, but it’s very good. After I posted this, a lot of people asked me whether this was taken by iPhone. This is one of my memorable moments, because I when took this picture, I felt that it was already up to my expectations without any editing.
Also, I enjoyed the pictures I took at Gardens by the Bay. I think every shot that I took there using OOWA lenses were featured [by Gardens by the Bay]. The 15mm Wide-angle lens is really very good, and it’s really wide.
Do you have a dream you aspire to achieve?
My dream is to be a travel photographer. I really want to travel the world and capture every moment.
Is there anybody that you look up to? Any photographer(s) that you have always been inspired by?
I would say Beautiful Destinations (@beautifuldestinations). Not just the Instagram page itself, but the people that handle the page. They inspire me greatly, because as mentioned, my dream is to go around the world as a travel photographer.
Lastly, would you like to share any tips you have for aspiring photographers?
I feel that, first of all, one must have the passion. You really have to love what you’re doing. If not, you’ll be doing it halfheartedly, and might tend to give up instead of persevering. Also, you need self-motivation. For instance, after work or school, you might just want to go home and rest, instead of going out to explore and get new content.
A lot of photographers ask me how I found this particular place, how I edited this photo, how I find the time to go and take photos, etc. Truth be told, I don’t have a lot of time, as I have work and other commitments. Squeezing out a bit of time is really your choice; it’s really down to you. I choose to put in effort into what I love. Basically I feel that you have to have the heart to learn, be open to any comments. If your heart is open, anyone can do it. Pursue your passion, have the fire, and keep it burning.
Luke shot all the images above with the OOWA 15mm wide angle and 75mm telephoto lenses.
Follow him on Instagram: @seathebreezee