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Meet Ryan Chua

Today we’d like to introduce you to Ryan Chua.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Ryan. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I was working for four years at UCSF Medical Center in the pharmacy department when I realized how miserable I was living a life my parents wanted. This was the all too familiar struggle most kids have with their Asian parents – do we live the life they want for us to make them happy? Or do we live the life we want to make ourselves happy? I decided to choose the latter and embraced my creative side. I started doing photography part-time and working with other aspiring models, makeup artists, stylists, etc. in San Francisco. Then decided this photography hobby was indeed my passion and continued the journey, never looking back.

Since then, I started a fashion magazine called Astonish Magazine, did social media and influencer management for Charlotte Russe and Betabrand, and eventually made my way to working with a social media/tech company called Fyuse / Fyusion. I eventually made my way to LA from SF and continued my photography journey with several fashion influencers and models. I also co-founded a social media agency in SoCal with two other partners, in which we managed accounts such as JINS Eyewear, DC Shoes, and so on.

Today, I’m addicted to TikTok. It’s so fun and I’ve grown to embrace the platform and have become a TikTok Creator. I now have over 500K followers on there!

Has it been a smooth road?
The biggest struggles I had were during my fashion magazine days when I had to run Astonish Magazine. Print magazine was dying and advertisers were spending ad money on digital ads. So we had to end the company after 1.5 years due to financial issues. But since then, I considered it as a life-long lesson on how to start a business, the importance of having the right people to work with, and the value of networking.

In my photography journey, there were ups and downs but I never focused on the downs, just on my next moves. I was always planning photoshoots and networking with other brands/influencers/models to work with. If you live your passion job, you never really have time to even think of what a struggle is, just the hustle. It’s all comes down to having good problem-solving skills and managing stress, which is basically applicable in all forms of life.

We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
At the moment, I am an Instagram (@ryanbyryanchua) and TikTok (@flip4realz) content creator. I work with fashion influencers, models, and brands for their photography and social media needs. I’m most proud of the network I’ve been able to cultivate from all the years of working in the industry. I think the highlights of my career are having shot at New York, Milan and Paris Fashion Weeks both the runways and street style. Not to mention having gone on influencer trips abroad for influencers and brands.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
Los Angeles is the best place to be for influencer and model photoshoots. We have so many options to choose from! We have the beaches and coasts to the west, the deserts to the east, mountains and valleys in the north, and then there’s Beverly Hills, Arts District, Melrose Avenue and DTLA in between. This makes it such an amazing destination for all the influencers/models/brands to do photoshoots in LA!

The only thing I dislike is traffic and finding parking, but as long as you do your research and plan accordingly, that won’t be much of an issue.

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