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Meet Jan Lim of Nothing Is Something Creation in El Sereno

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jan Lim.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Jan. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I feel extremely blessed to be where I am today as a filmmaker, photographer, and a participant in the field of arts. It took a lot of energy, self-motivation, and sacrifices throughout my ten year journey.

I think my journey started as a kid creating imaginary worlds with my toys. I grew up learning how to draw from copying images from books. I studied proportions and continued to draw throughout high school and experimented in painting and sculpting. I decided to pursue a college education in architecture because it blended my interest in drawing and designing. Architecture taught me how to make an impact by using design. It also taught me critical thinking skills, how to develop concepts, and how to communicate an idea through the use of software programs and physical models. I spent a lot of time in studio with my colleagues where we learned from one another. This was when I was first introduced to photography and film as an art form. I learned photography and videography as a tool to help convey my ideas for my thesis project of re-designing mobile parks and the units. The architecture program at Woodbury University really pushed me mentally and physically with a lot of sleepless nights. Looking back at this experience, I believe it made me who I am today and also gave me a different approach to photography and videography.

There were plenty of life-changing experiences like moving to Downtown Los Angeles as a photographer that led me to where I am now, but a chance meeting with one of my best friends and mentor Jan Ascanio changed the direction of my career. I met him at Shepard Fairey’s (owner of Obey Clothing) Studio Number One event. He randomly approached me and asked me if I could take a photo of him and his friends. I told him I would love to and that I had the same camera. We exchanged contacts and found out that we share the same first name! He advised me to start shooting video and that video was the future. Soon after that meeting, we started to work with each other. It really opened up a lot of doors for me. That’s when I really started to learn about filmmaking and the different aspects of it. It took years of hard work and working with friends to get to where I am today.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in architecture in 2009, I tried working in an architecture firm. I didn’t feel as passionate as I did during school and felt frustrated with the building industry during that recession. I decided to put architecture on hold and help my uncle with his graphic design business. One day I got a call from one of my best friends Ahdom Sayre who I met in architecture school. He offered me a room in a studio-style warehouse along the 4th Street Bridge in Downtown Los Angeles where I could start shooting photography. A few weeks before the offer, I purchased my first professional DSLR camera so I didn’t have much savings. I could not turn down the opportunity so I left my graphic design job in Orange County and packed my things. I barely had enough money to pay for my first month’s rent. I remember not getting the support from some people about pursuing a career in photography and videography because to them it seemed like an unattainable dream in a saturated market in a super competitive city.

Nothing Is Something Creation – what should we know? What do you do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
Nothing Is Something is a production company based in Los Angeles that specializes in creating visuals primarily in the form of videos and photographs. We believe in helping companies and individuals to expand their brands through these mediums. We select our team members for each specific job to match our clients’ needs. Our collective is composed of the most talented individuals in the field. Nothing Is Something is the belief that every idea is worth developing. The brand also serves as a reminder that we are all abundant in our blessings no matter how we may feel sometimes.

As the founder of Nothing Is Something, I would say my proudest moment is creating a full-length feature documentary about Subaru car culture titled Between The Lines. The film took approximately two years to complete and allowed me to travel around the world and meet many amazing people. The film opened doors and allowed us to collaborate with Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles and host annual blood drives at one of the largest Subaru car shows, Subiefest. I am very passionate about the car culture and believe that there are many opportunities to grow the culture in a positive direction.

What is “success” or “successful” for you?
Deciding on a goal, working hard on it, and seeing it to the end whatever the outcome may be is my definition of “success.” I think these steps build character and a purpose. I think sharing your success and inspiring others makes you successful.

I want to thank VoyageLA for allowing me to share my thoughts on this platform. I also want to thank my parents and relatives who have supported my decisions, my amazing friends that were always there for me, my talented colleagues who constantly inspire me, my clients who collaborate with me, my loving wife Kathrina for always looking out for my best interest, and to God, for blessing me with this life. Much love!

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