Cody Choi is a dancer and choreographer turned photographer. His photographic works are imbued with a passion for his subject; they are precise, contemporary and free, capturing the beautiful movements of his friends and colleagues in the different places that fill his days while on the road. We sat down with Cody for 5 minutes and asked him 5 questions about his unique background, and the things that inspire him every day.
So you’ve always been a dancer… but when did you discover photography as an expressive tool?
I started to do dance photography when I was doing a 3-year world tour with Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake. (And loving every minute of it!) There were many places I felt I would only get the chance to go to once so I bought a Nikon D50 to capture different places and start to take dance photos of my colleagues. Years later I started doing exhibitions and art fairs.
You travelled the world when you were performing in Swan Lake, did the different cities you visited inspire you in different ways?
I really love travelling. I always get so excited when I go to a new place. I’m always the first person to get out of the hotel to explore, I can’t waste a second. One of the best things I find when travelling is the opportunity to clear my mind and get perspective on what I’m doing, and what I have.
When I choreographed in Taiwan, the students really inspired me. They would try their best with every movement, they work the hardest, and they all have the warmest hearts. I love the art galleries and shops in Paris, they are just born with great style and taste there. I also love the football culture in England and Italy, football is so big, and the passion from the fans is amazing. (I actually wanted to be a pop star or a footballer when I was young!)
You know yourself, use it.
Is there much post-production involved in your photography or are they mostly natural moments of movement?
All the movements captured are natural, just as they happen when we shoot them. I might just clean the dust, and add some contrast and clarity, but everything else is as it happens.
What are you working on right now? Choreography or photography or both!
I have just closed an exhibition at the Imitate Modern gallery called Rhythm, and I’m participating at the Urban Art Fair and The Other Art Fair. I will also go to Taiwan to choreograph for the Taipei National University of Arts and exhibit my dance photography at Taipei 101, the tallest green building in the world!