"What Am I Looking At?"

Updated: Dec 10, 2020

Written and photographed by: Dylan Chen

The accountant who is a photographer… or is it the photographer who is an accountant? Regardless, I bet you didn’t expect to see the words “accountant” and “photographer” in the same sentence. What you can expect to see are photographs that beg the question: “What am I looking at?”


Accounting is formal. You could say it’s “black-and-white”; there is a right and a wrong.


Photography is creative; it’s open-ended and expressive.


Both disciplines influenced me on how to be formally creative and creatively formal.


The images I present to you focus on the repetitive objects, whether it be organic or man-made, we encounter in the world. Similar to my approach, it’s meant to make you curious. It’s the accountant who takes on the photographer.

Shapes and formations intrigue me. Why do cans look like that? What dictates the shape of a leaf? What caused a rod to bend and twist that way? It’s this curiosity that has pushed me to learn and do more, both formally and creatively.


Repetition is prevalent throughout the images. It gives an image a sense of expressive structure. A photo’s interpretation of this can be to divide the photo into grids using repetitive shapes, multiples of the same form, and so-on. By being organized, the images give me a sense of fulfillment, both internally and externally for those to appreciate.

By stripping an image of its color, both the photographer and viewer have a different experience. To compose an image in this manner takes a completely different approach. On the other hand, the viewer may notice how rough a rock feels, how smooth a shadow feels, how chilling a scene feels. The scene entices everyone to feel the image with all of their senses.


By breaking down a scene to compose by its shapes, repetition, and black-and-white approach, it’s the photographer who takes on the accountant.


Whoever I may be, there is one thing for certain: I want my viewer to be stimulated enough that the question begs itself:


“What am I looking at?”


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You can find more of Dylan's work on his instagram: @submergedsenses