The images of Suzanne Lee

5 11 2008

the_images_of_suzanne_lee_12“I’m currently checking this email from the Changi Airport – I am on my way to Delhi. Tomorrow morning, I will be in Calcutta, photographing the Chinese Community (hopefully) there…,” Suzanne Lee writes, explaining why she may be unreachable for this interview.

One month later, it’s late July, I write back telling her I still remember her website (

She is candid, but not impersonal, in the few short email exchanges we have. Making, and taking, the time seems prioritised for photography.

Not that Suzanne, 24, is inarticulate. Since she first picked up a camera at age 15, she has been expressing herself very eloquently indeed.

This travel-adventure photographer, “diagnosed with a severe case of Chronic Wanderlust in 2004” has been to over 20 countries since.

The advancements in ICT have brought to the fore that more young adults like Suzanne are chronologically much ‘older’ in their philosophy of choice and thoughts towards life.

The entry in February in her web-linked blog (, states: “As I promised, I will go back to the small community of blind masseurs that I photographed last November (2007) for the Angkor Photography Festival competition. I will bring them the necessities that they cannot find in Siem Reap e.g. talking clocks.” And she has.

“For the next year or two, I intend to be based in New Delhi, India,” she says, adding that she is still available for work anywhere and at any time, “so please contact me via the email listed on my website” (

“Three years ago I came here as a backpacker … eager to get acquainted with India. Two and a half months of travelling here wasn’t enough.”

Backpacking? I express my concern.

“Well, I like to travel alone. It’s really about being conscious of the surroundings, giving out the right body signals and dressing properly… common sense – and sensitivity to what and how people will react and think in relation to what oneself does,” shares Suzanne.

“The world acts in reaction to other actions and it is a constant cycle. Harmony can be achieved if we fully understand the concept of balance and psychology. That said, not everyone can do it without enough experience in this kind of extreme independence. It’s an individual’s choice and risk.”

So now Suzanne is back in India “to live, to grow, to learn, to work and to discover more of myself and my abilities… a dive into the deep end of the pool!”

Tell us a little about yourself.

I’m a freelance photographer from Malaysia but currently based in Delhi, India. I’ve exhibited my photography works numerous times and have been nominated for two awards. Most recently, I was 1st runner-up in an international photography competition in Cambodia and my most recent (joint) exhibition was at the Galeri Petronas, in KLCC.

When did you start your website?

About two years ago. Fellow blogger, Jimmy Chew ( has been helping me on some maintenance and design of my website (

The site serves to display a selection of my work and a sort of online archive for some digital data I might need when I’m on the road.

Has the Internet changed your life?

Blogging definitely has helped me expand my reach for causes that I want to highlight through my photography. It has also eased the process of showing work to clients and friends or acquaintances alike.

What is the foremost feature in Cyberspace that amazes you?

It amazes me how blogging has revolutionised freedom of press and expression and how it has in turn influenced the way people think and act. It has given the power of the pen (keyboard, maybe) a whole new superpower because now it reaches far wider and with much more ease than we could’ve ever fathomed.

Blogging has its fair share of pros and cons so readers will have to take a step back and review all that they have read because mostly, no one will be held responsible for what they write on the World Wide Web and furthermore, it is all a matter of opinion and not always factual.

That said, I also believe that much facts can be exposed to a wider audience and this will educate the readers on matters that are left unsaid in conventional media.

Which one blog would you choose to read/interact with?

Zorro ( is a blog I sometimes read because this blogger is well connected to the other serious bloggers in Malaysia and thus would churn out an interesting perspective on issues, etc, in the country which not only reflects his personal opinions or knowledge, but also, naturally, has been influenced by interacting with other people on the similar topics.

What would you really like to achieve? (Some personal ambition?

I would like to slowly evolve the website/blog and my career in the direction that I am pursuing. It is a satisfying feeling to view my blog, which reminds me of the paths I have taken and where I want to go.

If there were someone you could influence to take up blogging?

I wish very much that Nelson Mandela would blog because he has so much to say and so much to teach the world (and the world leaders). His Autobiography, although splendidly written, doesn’t do justice to the mine of wisdom that he has, and which he wants to share. His blog, if ever, would be fundamental in shaping many minds and hearts and the world would be a better place with more positive and compassionate people.

Any memorable incidents through blogging?

Collectively, the memorable incidents of blogging are bitter-sweet. More sweet than bitter, but yes, we have negative people and angry people in the blogosphere… as we do in the world. But these confrontations or provocations done over the Internet have a different effect, I believe… as compared with someone coming up to you in the streets and spitting accusations or negativity at you. When done over the Internet, there is no actual physical violence and there is the option of ignoring the attack or taking a day or two to digest it before a retaliation or reply.

It teaches many people to think before they speak (or write) because what’s written will generate controversies and debates that reflect on oneself.

Source : Malay Mail



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