Kelvin Lim was born in Singapore in 1971. In 2002, Kelvin left a promising IT career to be a wedding photographer. It was his ﬁrst taste of life as a full-time artist.
Despite enjoying great popularity and commercial success, Kelvin felt restricted by mass expectations of staged romance and surface beauty, and started questioning the authenticity of his own work. Beneath the gorgeous outﬁts, backdrops and poses, Kelvin sees a real person – a beauty waiting to be discovered.
Driven by a desire to understand people as unique individuals, Kelvin started photographing people outside weddings. Instead of trying to get that “perfect” shot, he spent his time listening to people, one at a time. In an undecorated studio with plain backdrops and simple lights, Kelvin welcomed people of all race and status – from famous personalities to the common passers-by, from wealthy businessmen to the odd-job worker, from newly-weds to wrinkled old couples, from newborns tasting life, to the terminally ill.
Kelvin’s subjects range beyond paying clients. Besides telling real-life stories of the lessprivileged, Kelvin embraces the minorities, the lonely, and communities that conservative society considers taboo. In a career spanning 16 years thus far, he is heavily involved in several humanitarian projects, including:
• A major project with Home Nursing Foundation, culminating in an island-wide exhibition and a book of portraits of the elderly, and stories on the lives of the poor.
• An art residency with Exactly Foundation, documenting and telling real-life stories depicting the reality of caregiving in Singapore.
• An exhibition and a calendar of portraits for Breast Cancer Foundation, celebrating the beauty and courage of breast cancer survivors.
Among Kelvin’s notable achievements was the Best Portrait Photography Award by Singapore Tatler, and being listed among Singapore’s ﬁnest services.
Kelvin continues to express beauty through honest conversation and deep listening. In his own words:
“We have an opportunity to give back to society every time we photograph someone— anyone. The camera isn’t just a tool to capture the obvious. If we take the time and heart o listen and empathise, we will discover a beauty beneath how people look on the outside.
It’s a wonderful blessing for us, as artists, to have this ability to touch people’s lives.