- Interview -
Do you like winter?
I always enjoy the beginning of winter, around the holidays. It’s fun to go out and photograph dramatic winter days. Around the end of January, I usually start hating winter. I find February and March to be brutal and I do everything possible to escape whenever I can.
You’ve collaborated on GIFs for brands like Aeropostale, St. Ives, Net Ten and Lipton. How would you compare the experience of creating GIFs in a professional environment, as opposed to making them in your personal life?
When I create things from my personal life it’s a organic process. I capture whatever is happening and it’s for my own enjoyment. Working on a piece for a brand is completely different. I’m creating a moment or a scene and I try to pull things from my life. Also, I’m always thinking about the brand’s message and audience and if my concept makes sense from the audience perspective.
Sandy, would you prefer tea, or coffee?
Tea! I love tea! Whenever someone in my family goes abroad, they bring back tea for me. I particularly love the Harrod’s Ceylon Tea from London and any sort of green tea from Japan.
For my college senior thesis, I wrote about tea plantation land distribution in Kenya after decolonization. It’s fascinating to travel and see how other countries and cultures have developed their use of tea in their day to day lives. Also, like wine, tea can be consumed in an extremely casual setting but it can also be part of a ritual or ceremony.
And that pastry - was it any good?
Going on a safari is an unforgettable experience! Seeing these incredible and wild animals in their natural habitat is astounding. During one of the drives we saw a family of lions and I’ll never forget watching the cubs roughhouse.
I see a waterfall in this looping thumb flip. Are going away again?
I’m heading to Iceland for a week at the end of May! I have a list of places that I want to see and Iceland has been on there for a long time now.
My interest in Iceland was originally sparked because of Tumblr and Instagram. I’ve seen so many incredible photos of the landscape, the waterfalls and the wild horses. I’m so excited to go see it for myself and I’m definitely hoping to create some crazy Iceland cinemagraphs.
When working on a GIF assignment, you love it when clients…
Are open to a range of ideas. I’ve been really lucky and most of my projects have been very collaborative.
It makes you a little nutty when…
I think that over time, I’ve come up with solutions to most of the things that drive me nutty (limiting revisions, setting up timelines and agreeing on concepts). I love creating GIFs and I try to maintain that perspective when I’m frustrated with something.
I tried, but have no idea what the shaving brush is mixing (If it’s even a shaving brush).
The brush is actually a whisk! To make matcha, a powdered green tea, you have to whisk it into the water. It’s delicious!
You are a photographer, full motion GIF, and cinemagraph artist. Do you have a favorite?
I love it all, from the wacky and hilarious GIF to high end cinemagraphs.
When people find out you are from Chicago, what’s the first thing they usually say, or ask?
Last, most important question. Nugget and Kuma. BFF or Frenemies?
It depends on the day. Nugget is a bit more playful so sometimes Kuma gets annoyed with her but their frenemy bouts are usually very short.
They usually spend most of their time hoggin up the couch or bed with their snuggles.