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Featured Handmade Artist Thursday: Young Swan Designs

This week’s artist Deborah Yun is truly doing what she loves most in life, capturing unforgettable images through her camera lens. Originally from Guam, Deborah now resides in California and we are lucky to have her talent here! The photos she takes from around the world, for her company Young Swan Designs, are truly special. We are partial to the beautiful moments she captures of Southern California at its most magical times. We asked Deborah, fellow The Artisan Group ( member, a few questions to get to know what inspires her gorgeous work:

Tell us how you got started.

It all started trying to capture the beautiful ocean landscapes and cloudscapes of Guam, the island where I was born. My love for photography blossomed further during my time in Italy where I studied drawing and painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in Florence. My artist mentor at the time, Filippo Rossi, expressed that my photographs were fearless while my drawings were timid. It was the first time I saw photography as a serious medium and transitioned from canvas and paints to cameras and pixels.

What equipment and materials do you use?

When shooting analog I love using black and white Tri-X film and being in the darkroom to create my prints. When shooting digital I use my Canon 5D Mark II.What inspires your work?

Many things from European cities with vibrant culture, rich history and beautiful architecture to the ocean, floral landscapes and patterns in nature inspire me.

What are some of your favorite photos? 

“Timeless Paris” I love this work because it captures this timelessness I felt while wandering the streets of Paris. It is also one of a kind—I used alternative photography processes in the darkroom that produce unique results where no two prints are identical.

“Cloudy Venice” The story behind the makings of this piece is one of the reasons why it is one of my favorites. I was driving around in Venice, CA and saw this dark, gloomy cloud looming over the city… but on an incredibly sunny day! It was quite the juxtaposition. I luckily happened to have my camera loaded with color film so I pulled a U-turn and headed straight for the beach!

“Fall Up”

The colors and details in this print are extraordinary, especially on the metallic paper I use. It reminds me of looking through a kaleidoscope. It was the most popular piece at a recent art show I did and looks best as a large print.

Any other cool facts about your shop and you as an artist? 

The name “Young Swan Designs” was inspired by the story of the Ugly Duckling. It is one of my favorite classic children’s books, reminding us all to follow our truth no matter how long it takes or how arduous our path. Apparently, Hans Christian Anderson considered naming the title of his book “Young Swan.” I named my studio “Young Swan Designs” because I am still in this journey of being an artist. As much as I love photography and traveling, I enjoy learning languages. I speak Japanese, Korean, Italian and am currently learning French.

For more on Deborah and Young Swan Designs make sure to visit these links:

Twitter: @youngswandesign


About GoldenPlume

Golden Plume is handmade eco-friendly gold and stone jewelry created in Los Angeles by a small team! WWW.GOLDENPLUMEJEWELRY.COM

3 responses »

  1. These are terrific images. I love the use of pastels in your work.

  2. Thank you for the wonderful interview Nita!! I really like the photos you selected for the post 🙂


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