Meet Keng; talented visual story teller and barista championship finalist but for us, most of all, former housemate and legendary friend who took the very first shots of the cafe when we had only just opened up Uncommon.
Keng is an Amsterdam based photographer with a focus on lifestyle, food, interior, portrait and documentary photography. He is currently shooting an ongoing project called Keng’s Cafe Culture (#kengscafeculture), which combines his love for traveling and coffee, which gives him a unique perspective on the cafe culture around the world. Instead of focusing solely on the way a cafe looks, or what makes it populair, he tends to see what goes on in the background. He looks for quality, uniqueness and the stories about the people behind these amazing cafes.
We sat down with Keng for a new edition of the Uncommon Collective, a series of short interviews with some of the inspiring people we collaborate with.
What do you love most about what you do?
It’s the places I go and the people I meet.
What influences your creativity on a daily basis?
Very cliche but everything around me influences my creativity. It can be everything, from beautiful light, to tasty food, new places or even music and sounds.
What challenges do you face and how do you overcome them?
I’m my own biggest critic of my work, and I’m extremely detail oriented. Sometimes I have to let go of that and see the beauty in the imperfection.
Favourite gear, favourite cup of coffee and favourite ceramic?
When I’m traveling I always bring my Snow Peaking camping v60 and my Commandante grinder. The most memorable coffee I’ve had was when we were pulling the test espresso backstage for the World Finals in Amsterdam, 2018. Goosebump moment, standing there with the team and tasting the best coffee we’ve ever had. My favorite ceramic is my Bear Pond Espresso mug from Tokyo, and my pastel blue Chunky Cup from Gustav Westman.
How do you see the future of photography?
Photography is capturing the now and tomorrow that now is already the past. It’s hard for me to see where the future will go with photography. I just hope I’m there.
What dream shoots are still on your list?
When great places and interesting people come together, that is what creates dream shoots for me. So I’m looking forward for more of that in the future.