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John, Indianapolis, on Being Inspired to Travel

This interview is part of the Bamboo Scenes “Around the World” series. Each month, we’ll be introducing our readers to one of our happy clients to talk about their experience with Bamboo Scenes and memories of Hong Kong.
Bamboo Scenes Hong Kong Photography Art Interview with John Morrical

Who are you?

My name is John Morrical. I was born and raised in Dallas, Texas, before my family moved near New York City during my teenage years. I learned to play piano back when boys would do anything to win girls at 13, joined my first band at 14 and found myself in way over my head at Berklee College of Music in Boston at 18. This spiraled into a career as a mix engineer/producer in studios from NYC in the late 90s to LA throughout most of the 2000s. I had never had the chance to travel as my career took off at an early age and I was trapped in studios constantly. 

My wanderlust was lit in 2009, after spending a month in Colombia while traveling the country and recording traditional Marimba and Cumbia parts for a certain Colombian artist. In 2013 I was mainly mixing music for clients unattended, sending and receiving files via dropbox in LA and realized I could be mixing from anywhere so I bought an SUV and embarked on a life-changing two-year odyssey through South America, mixing remotely.

I didn’t last long back in the States before deciding I should be spending the rest of my life traveling. I grew up with a Navy pilot father and I’ve come full circle in life now working as a commercial pilot intent on seeing more of this planet. Currently, I’m living in Indianapolis but the travel benefits of my job will have me bouncing all over.

"Dreaming of Pink" (2015) by Vivien Liu - wall art in John Morrical’s house in Indianapolis
"Dreaming of Pink" (2015) by Vivien Liu - wall art in John Morrical’s house in Indianapolis

What's your connection to Hong Kong?

My uncle’s family moved to Hong Kong in the 70s so I was regaled with tales of this mystical place throughout my childhood when we’d rendezvous at family reunions. It wasn’t until much later in life, in 2018, that I had the opportunity to spend a month in Sai Ying Pun.

The juxtaposition of nature and urbanity was mind-blowing. It’s by far the most magical city I’ve visited. There’s an energy to it that’s indescribable and I can say without a doubt it’s lived up to the hype my cousins gave it so many years ago. It was Hong Kong that set in motion my switch from windowless studios to flight-level office views.

John describes Hong Kong as "by far the most magical city I’ve visited, there’s an energy to it that’s indescribable."

How did you come across Bamboo Scenes?

While in HK I spent some time with a Dutch friend I met in Buenos Aires. She lives in Hong Kong now and showed me some photographs at a coffee shop which I could purchase a print of right then and there through Bamboo Scenes.

Bamboo Scenes Photo of John's Bedroom with wall art of  Sharon Liu's "Old Fashion"
"Old Fashion" (2017) by Sharon Liu - wall art in John Morrical’s house in Indianapolis

What do you like about Bamboo Scenes?

I got Bamboo Scenes right away. The concept. The idea....The Need... It’s essentially a farm-to-table concept for photographers. It bridges the gap between those who create and those who appreciate. It’s a facilitator of art and art appreciation.

“Bamboo Scenes bridges the gap between those who create and those who appreciate. It’s a facilitator or art and art appreciation”

My photographer friends in Los Angeles saw the first print I purchased and they’ve been begging me to lure Bamboo Scenes to go global, starting here, of course. They’ve also become drawn to the works of the current Hong Kong generation as well as my own all time fave, Fan Ho.

Bamboo Scenes Hong Kong Photography Artist Vivien Liu ​​Dreaming of Pink (2015) - Portland Street, Yau Ma Tei, Hong Kong
"Dreaming of Pink" (2015) by Vivien Liu - wall art in John Morrical’s house in Indianapolis

What have you bought from Bamboo Scenes?

The first piece I bought was “Old Fashion”. I’ve seen thousands of cityscape shots but this one stood out to me. Sharon’s use of Bokeh as an abstraction works well, giving me a double take as to just what it is I’m looking at. I love it. I wake up to it every morning while doing sun salutations in my bedroom.

The second piece is an Epic-sized print of Vivien’s “Dreaming of Pink.” The colour is so vibrant! It reminds me of how I felt wandering the streets. It doesn’t scream “Hong Kong!” but I know I’m there. The late model taxi brings a nostalgic romanticism to the frame as well. It resides in my living room to keep my spirit of adventure in check when I’m starting to feel too content.

'Old Fashion' (2017) by Sharon Liu - wall art at John Morrical's house in Indianapolis

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