Photographs by KangHee Kim are known in corners all over the internet. Instantly satisfying but including something just-not-quite-right, her crafted images have garnered a huge following, always stopping people whilst scrolling through feeds.
At a basic level, it would be easy to describe KangHee’s work as easily digestible images that make you ask “how did she do that?!” before moving onto the next. But for the photographer, making work is a process to keep her calm, the action of meticulously crafting these images together is as satisfying for KangHee as it is for someone looking at them.
Born in Seoul but now based in the States, “My visa situation (DACA) hasn’t been solved, and the government is in the middle of taking an action for DACA recipients,” the photographer explains when asked what’s been playing on her mind. “It’s all up in the air for a long time. I’ve been trying to put myself at ease by making work everyday and staying hopeful,” she tells It’s Nice That. “As a result of that I think I’ve made work that is more at peace now I look back at them.”
Other than being inspiring her to make work, KangHee’s visa situation also dictates locations where she may or may not photograph. Recently interested in “observing golden hours, clouds and sunsets as I love how they form their different shapes every day and happen in such a short amount of time,” KangHee has been travelling to San Fransisco and Hawaii (“which is the furthest I can go within the States”) to gather material.
Whilst working with these images, the photographer has also realised how her works are becoming "more refined and have subtle touches on Photoshop, compared to the beginning stage,” she points out. Experiencing a personal feeling of limbo she decided “to focus on my current state, and what I have in the present,” she explains. This ethos mirrors the work she makes, displaying a window into a moment she’s noticed between multiple images which work almost too perfectly as one.
About the Author
Lucy (she/her) is the senior editor at Insights, a research-driven department with It's Nice That. Get in contact with her for potential Insights collaborations or to discuss Insights' fortnightly column, POV. Lucy has been a part of the team at It's Nice That since 2016, first joining as a staff writer after graduating from Chelsea College of Art with a degree in Graphic Design Communication.