Aside from being a videographer, Matthew is also a really good babysitter.
Matthew, Matt, Mattie, Chuchu - these are some of the names that Matthew Chow goes by with his friends and family. He is an aspiring Director of Photography (DOP) and a Video Editor who is heavily invested into making visuals that are not only aesthetically pleasing but also tell a good story. Before he started to freelance, he was a Video Editor at We Are Kix, a Production House for 5 years.
What made you dabble into photography/videography?
When I was younger, my mum gave me a camera for my birthday as I was really into photography. Since then, I used every opportunity to take pictures of anything that I was exposed to - I would take pictures of family gatherings, church events and school events. After high school, I decided that I wanted to go the unconventional route and enrolled myself in an Audio Engineering course with the support of my parents. When I was interning at We Are Kix, I took the extra time outside of my internship to make videos of my own and that sparked my love for videography. Safe to say, I have been shooting and editing videos ever since and I am really enjoying the process.
What were some of the challenges you faced throughout your videography journey?
Staying motivated in the long run. To me, motivation ignites creativity that brings forth determination. There is no intent to learn, research, be inquisitive or the desire to get out of our comfort zones if we are not motivated in what we do. Personally, I find these elements are the things that always excite me before I start a project because it challenges me to think differently.
What are three things we would find in your essentials art bag?
My phone, a pen and a mini notebook and a bucket hat. I prefer to use my phone to take pictures of things that seem interesting to me because it is convenient. I hardly post any of the stuff I take on my phone but it is something that helps me to practice with my composition. A pen and notebook always comes in handy when I need to write something down or to scribble any ideas or concepts I have in my head. The bucket is my lucky charm and I would never leave the house without a bucket hat. If you see me without a bucket hat, consider yourself lucky.
In your opinion, what were some of your favourite projects that you have worked on?
At We Are Kix, one of the projects we worked on was a live broadcast for a travel show across 6 countries in South East Asia. Combined with the little amount of sleep we got, the endless amount of rehearsals and travelling we did, it was really tiring but I felt that the effort was worth it. We had thousands of people tuning to watch our small little adventures and this is one project that I will definitely talk about with my kids in the future.
Another one of my recent projects was to shoot 8 music videos for Dayang Nurfaizah. They were all live performances for her upcoming album. I spent about a month preparing for this shoot and I knew that I had to step and push myself since I knew that this project was for Dayang herself. Honestly, I was not ready for all the anxiety, panic attacks and the actual set itself. Personally, this was one of the most challenging projects I have undertaken in my career as a videographer but I am proud to be part of the project.
Grow at your own pace because everybody learns and improves at different speeds
Having gone through your journey, what is the one thing you wished you knew before starting out?
To be patient and not rush things. I always thought I needed to catch up to the best in the industry - that includes having the best equipment, taking out the best projects to even having the best ‘shots’. I would compare myself to these successful people and that affected my work ethos and thinking. Slowly, I realised that I should go at my own pace. Opportunities come and go but what is most important is to take it one step at a time and grow at your own pace because everybody learns and improves at different speeds. To this day, I am still trying to learn to enjoy the journey, the process and the progress.
What do you hope to achieve with your videography?
One day, I would love to go international but I still have a long way to go and there is still so much to learn. For the time being, I hope to be able to create videos and provide my audience with an experience which cannot be conveyed through words. I would also love to be able to inspire and help others who are just starting out in their own creative journey because I know how difficult it is for them to keep up and stick to their own creative journey. Sometimes, all we need is just a little bit of motivation and guidance.
Who are the 3 local Creative Crush that inspire you?
Amani (@amania_) has a very special eye that not many people have. I admire her works as she always manages to entice her audience with different emotions. I have worked closely with her and she has so many bright ideas that are yet to be unleashed for the world to see.
Nicholas (@travellchin) is someone that I look up to as a fellow DOP. Seeing his work, I love how he likes to experiment with lighting, colours and composition which enhances the viewer experience. Knowing his work and his work ethics, it is unsurprising that he is one of the DOP’s out there in Malaysia.
Project Underscore (@prj_____) is a collective that was started with me and a couple of my friends. Each of us have our own unique background and we tend to try to speak to us differently and express our ideas in different forms. I like how we are all different but also similar in the way we embrace new challenges. We are also always hungry to achieve something new.