June, 2013 Monthly archive



We are very very happy to announce that we have an official logo for TwentyFifteen.SG. A very very big thank you to Jonathan Yuen Creative Director at Roots for designing this for us. Yay! #sg2015

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Each of the 20 photographers participating in this project is donating an image for sale. Limited to only three pieces, each of them sells at S$1200 and all proceeds, after deducting the production cost of the print, goes back to financing the publications. The first print, by Darren Soh, who will be the first photographer in the series, is now up for sale.

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Because Platform has quite a loud mouth and considerably sizeable following, people tend to overestimate our ability.

While flattering, we want to remind others, and ourselves, that we remain a volunteer-run interest group with very limited resources.

From the day we started work on, we knew there would be complaints, and a recent one is a concern that we may be xenophobic. Now this is a very serious charge.

We are not.

The truth is, we do know the bigger picture and that is – a more global approach – will always be looked after by organizations with huge budgets, and Platform isn’t one.

We trust that established organizations like Singapore Tourism Board have plans to do international stuff, so why even try to pretend that we can duplicate that?

From the start, Platform has always been focused on promoting Singaporean photographers because we believe that this area needs work, and this is the area we are passionate about.

But have we been exclusive? Hardly. Just come to a Platform session and see for yourself.

We claim no exclusivity in our ventures and have always worked with others including those who disagree with us.

And we count on partners and friends.

Invisible Photographer Asia (IPA), a close partner of Platform and one of the first organizations we approached as twentyfifteen partner, for instance, casts a much wider net than us. They have a much more global reach and we love what they do.

Do we want to be like IPA and compete for that market? No.

I think it is important the choice of 20 photographers be taken in the right light. We have never claimed, internally or externally, that they are the best. Hardly.

If money and time were no concern, we would like to publish 195 photographers, from all walks of life, from different origins. We have friends from UK, Poland, Germany, China, USA, Argentina, South Africa, Ukraine, etc etc etc that we want to work with. We have young shooters that we want to feature.

We want to make space for great photographers we have not even met.

But as of now, we don’t have those luxuries.

The idealistic side of some of us keeps telling us that if our initiative spurs others on to start their own projects – seriously, WHY NOT?

If a group of expats who have lived in Singapore wants to start something similar, we will be so happy and we will be the first to offer congratulations, and perhaps help (if asked).

If a student group from a secondary school wants to do it, we will be so happy too. And we will gladly open up our files for them to see.

This morning, one of us spoke to a potential sponsor regarding funding and expressed Platform’s collective wish – honestly, we think the 20 books are already funded. If extra money comes in, we would like to explore how to grow related projects that will benefit even more people.


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PLATFORM is proud to announce the final four photographers who will bring the line up of TwentyFifteen to 20! They are John Clang, Lim Weixiang, Sim Chiyin and our very own Tay Kay Chin.

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Weighing in at slightly below 500g.

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We are pleased to add the following photographers to our list of contributors for the project:
Jing Quek Tan Ngiap Heng Samantha Tio Sean Lee Nguan Chow Chee Yong Nurul Rashid Sit Weng San Kevin WY Lee and Ore Huiying.

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[ TWENTYFIFTEEN.SG update: June 16, 2013 ] We are pleased to confirm that the following photographers have accepted our invitations: Robert Zhao Renhui, Edwin Koo, Darren Soh, Ernest Goh, Matthew Teo, Sam Chin & Samuel He. A few more should be replying soon.

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We basically started with a list of photographers we are keen to discuss, and each of us was asked to indicate our choices – MUST HAVE, YES, NO and MAYBE. All of us have the right and responsibility to add names to the list.

If a photographer gets more MUST HAVE and/or YES than NO and/or MAYBE, we then decide if we will make the approach.

But this is not a strictly numerical exercise. At any one stage, we can also debate names that are on the fringe, either way.

Now that we have gone through a few rounds, we are going to add more new names.

As of today, we have about 10 confirmed names, and made approaches to most of them on this list.

Of course, we don’t expect everyone to say YES to us.

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Who is funding this?

We are, and the ‘we’ includes you. The Platform founders, together with some good friends and supporters, have put in some seed money. We have enough to kick-start the first book, and will put all the proceeds back for future volumes.

We will also ask every participating photographer to donate three prints, which we will then sell to help with the publishing.

How many books will you be publishing?

There will be 20 books in total.

Are all the photographers producing new works for their respective book?

Yes, we highly encourage that although some projects may have started earlier. We want and expect all photographers to add substantial percentage of new materials.

Are we accepting donations?

Yes, of course we can use all the help.

Do we have enough photographers to complete the project?

Yes, we think we do. In fact, we are worried that some people won’t be happy that they are not invited.

Do we welcome nominations?

Why not? While we know quite a number of photographers, we don’t pretend that we know everyone.

When and where will the books be launched?

By default, all launches will be at the monthly Platform sessions.

Why are we launching so early?

Because we are slow, and we are not working on this full-time (we can’t afford to). Because good works take time.

Are we worried other people will clone this?

No. We hope more individuals and groups will find something to do. It is for Singapore. Not just for our ego.

Do we need non-monetary help?

Of course. But we have no money to pay.

How big are your proposed books?

As big as GE11, but thicker paper stock.

Will there be words?

Yes. On top of captions, each book will include an 1-1 interview with the photographer, and this will be anchored by Leonard Goh.

Will we be open to institutional partnerships?

Yes. We have explored, and will continue to explore. But we want to retain as much creative and editorial controls as possible.

Will we pay ourselves?

No. Other than 10 copies of our own book when published, everyone is working for free.

Will the photographer be selling other prints?

It is up to the individual photographers to decide what they want to do because apart from the 15 works they are allowing us to use, they own their own works.

Are all the photographers based in Singapore?

We have eye-balled at least two who don’t live here but we hope they can still find ways to participate.

Will you be redesigning this website?

Ya lah. So ugly right?


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