interview Photography

Chatting With Instagram Favoruite J9ryl

8/29/2016Jake Ryan


Every time I scroll through my Instagram account looking at the photos others have posted, the photos of Jeryl never fail to immediately grab my attention. Jeryl a 20 year old living in Singapore takes some of the cleanest and most incredible photos and posts them to his popular account J9RYL

I recently spoke with Jeryl to discuss his photography style and his plans for the future, see what he had to say…


Hey Jeryl, tell us a little about yourself?
Hey! I'm Jeryl from hot and sunny Singapore! I'm 20 years old as of Feb 2016. I finished junior college in 2014 and now doing my part serving the nation in Army. Most of the time I'll be out shooting across my precious weekends before I return back to camp for the next five weekdays. I've a thing for repeated patterns, lines and symmetry, and being born and raised in a skyscraping city like Singapore, I've grown to see the beauty in every work of architects.

So for anyone who doesn’t know, you run the Instagram account j9ryl. Your work is pretty incredible, when did you get started in photography? Your style is pretty unique. Where do you get your ideas?
In 2014 when I started photographing mainly architecture in Singapore for my Instagram feed, I realized photography really opened my eyes to the surroundings, especially the different kinds of buildings here, some of them even award-winning architectures. All these amazing architectures are more than often diluted in the everyday hustle and bustle of the city life here as Singaporeans rush for datelines and meetings and family and plans and every else. 

I love to include the human element in my architectural shots as it enhances the scale and depth of the building or structure greatly. I like seeing buildings from different perspectives and angles, usually by exploiting the heights of high-rise buildings around the vicinity. I stumbled upon the hashtag #ChasingStraightFacades that was originated by another Instagrammer @nukeproofsuit, and found that the density of Singapore's flats, like Hong Kong, is perfect for such perspective.

Is it hard trying to find buildings/settings that fit the theme of your account?
Singapore can be described as an urban jungle with many variety of interesting architecture, hence it isn’t too difficult to find structures or buildings that I wish to shoot. I love to venture into housing estates around the island to find new perspectives or even just for a higher ground to scout for cool spots to shoot.

Have you ever studied photography or did you teach yourself?
Like many others out there on Instagram, I won't consider myself a professional photographer. I started off as a mobile photographer, and now I shoot with a compact camera, though I still snap on the go with my mobile some times. I guess I still have room for improvement and much more to explore in the world of photography.

I believe photography is about experimenting and experiencing; looking at my older posts, I realise I have learnt a lot regarding shooting and editing and I’ve grown to discover a style suited for myself.

How much time do you spend trying to get those perfect shots?
I usually would plan out where in Singapore I would want to visit sometimes with a shot I want already in mind, but most of the time it’s just me wandering around the estate trying to find a suitable vantage point. I would say, not all trips are fruitful or rewarding, hence I do spend a considerable amount of time accumulating a collection of images before choosing a few to be edited and subsequently posted on my feed.

Another time consuming factor would be the editing process after I’ve chosen a picture to post. Besides being extra cautious of over-editing the colours (due to my colour deficiency), I will spend a great amount of time straightening the image and paying close attention to details of the image.

Who is your biggest inspiration? 
I am inspired by many others in the Instagram community that shoots people and architecture. Leslie (@blackmobil) was one of my initial inspirations. He too sees architecture in a very unique perspective. Now we are good friends and we’ll go out to shoot whenever our schedule allows.

Do you have a photo you’re most proud of?
Definitely the picture taken at Textile Centre Singapore which garnered the highest viewership I’ve ever gotten. Minimalistic & clean repeated patterns, that picture reflects my style vividly.


What’s your ideal project as a photographer?
I would love to travel with other travel photographers and explore different kinds of architecture around the world as the architecture reflects the culture of the place. My goal is to use Instagram as a collection of rich cultures expressed through architecture.

Has Instagram had an impact on your style as a photographer?
I would say Instagram opened my eyes to many different styles & perspectives of architectural photography and I’ve since picked up some interesting traits in certain photographer’s work and modified them to be used in my style of photography.

And finally, what do you have planned for the future? 
I can’t say for sure what the future entails, but I doubt photography will be more than my mere interest. I will be continuing my tertiary education locally and hopefully get a chance to travel around the globe for photography, showcasing how the world would be through my spectacle on Instagram.


Make sure you follow Jeryl on Instagram HERE

Thanks Jeryl for taking the time to speak with TravelFoodFilm. 

All photos in this post belong to Jeryl. 

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