I met Eugene when I first had a meeting with members of a magazine called Hyphen. Hyphen is churning out thoughtful, entertaining, risque, and brilliant work geared towards creating awareness of social issues, fostering a sense of community, and offering a platform for progressive Asian Americans to discuss what's on their minds today - AND it's run by a group of activists, organizers, journalists, multi-disciplinary artists, educators, and just people you'd want to hang out and have a beer with.
Eugene plans to film stories about the sharing economy. He is also planning to do ride alongs tomorrow with different drivers of cabs, Lyft, Sidecar, etc. He's hoping to also collaborate with other participants from Hyphen and CAAM, who will be covering topics like the future of Asian Americans in cities like SF, doing a walk through with District Supervisor Jane Kim for a SOMA beautification project, interviewing residents of Manilatown's International Hotel, exploring an art program and exhibit in Chinatown, filming a bike party and riding to a Bike Film Fest with the SF Bicycle Coalition, attending a comedy night at the Chinese Historical Society of America, and much more. Very excited to welcome Eugene and the rest of the Hyphen and CAAM team to One Day in SF.
Who are you and what is your profession?
I’m a freelance director, producer, cinematographer, animator and illustrator. I love visual storytelling. I work with organizations and individuals that include Fortune 500 firms, non-profits, startups, magazines and artists.
Can you tell us a little about your background and upbringing?
I’m a Bay Area native. Born in San Jose to Taiwanese immigrant parents, and raised in Cupertino, in the heart of the Silicon Valley. I earned my degree in economics from UCLA and did a three-year stint in the consulting world. After that I decided to take a leap and pursue my passion for filmmaking. I have been working professionally as a filmmaker, animator and illustrator since 2012.
What inspired you to become a filmmaker?
Watching movies as a kid and being moved by what happened on screen. I think it’s the most powerful medium that exists today.
Who or what do you most admire?
I admire anyone who has passion and loves what they do for a living; they eat it, drink it, sleep it. It doesn’t matter if they’re a barista, an engineer, a teacher, or a banker, being around people with passion is inspiring.
What do you love about SF?
I love that it’s a city of hustlers. It’s competitive in the sense that bad ideas and laziness don’t survive here. This city draws hard working, talented and creative people of all persuasions, backgrounds, and industries.
What do you fear most for SF?
I fear San Francisco will become a city where money rules all, where ideas will be judged based on their economic value instead of their social values.
What do you hope for SF in the next 20 years?
I hope in 20 years SF will still be evolving, and it’ll be a city that never stagnates.