Header image courtesy of @natalie_studio_ (via Instagram)
Originally published by Sophie Pettit. Last updated by Rosamond Chung.
Hong Kong is every Instagrammer’s dream, and you only have to browse the Localiiz Instagram account to see that we are blessed with a wealth of talented photographers who contribute to our virtual photo album by tagging their incredible city shots with #localiiz. So, in honour of our dedicated followers, and the photogenic city we call home, we share our pick of the 14 best Hong Kong Instagram accounts that will make you fall in love with the 852 all over again.
The common folks of Hong Kong are the stars of the show for Malaysian-born, “Hong Kong-grown” Instagrammer Josh Lin. Whether it’s an elderly lady taking an afternoon nap in the street, a market vendor waiting for his next customer, or a well-fed shop cat perched proudly on a countertop, Lin somehow manages to find beauty in everyday, fleeting moments that he captures with cinematic flair. If you’ve enjoyed looking at photos of adorable elderly Hongkongers on our Instagram feed, then chances are that they were taken by him.
If there’s one photographer who can encapsulate the intensity of life in our condensed metropolis, it’s Bernie Ng. This striking Instagram account is scattered with vibrant images of Hong Kong’s Tetris-like apartment blocks and windows, which bring you to the brink of vertigo. We love his lengthy commentaries which explain the photographic composition of each skilfully captured shot, as well as the history of the location.
Hong Kong’s famous neon signs have inspired many an Instagram feed, and this talented snapper certainly knows how to make them shine in all their glory. We love Tak Lau’s dazzling street scenes, which are bursting with colour and old-school charm. And although neon is not the main theme or focus of Lau’s Instagram account, as his real fascination lies in the city’s complex architecture and infrastructure, his shots of this indelible art form are some of the best we’ve ever seen.
Keeping things continuously fresh and interesting, Ronson Chan has mastered the skill of changing up Instagram themes in a well-thought-out pattern. From burnt orange sunsets to towering apartment blocks, and neon-lit streets to heavy traffic flow, his account sheds light on every part of our city, while capturing its chaotic energy and beauty. We love how Chan plays with different colour palettes, often flitting between heavily saturated shots to pale and subdued captures.
Being Insta-famous for his unreal photographs, Victor Cheng has been known to take photos that look out of this world, whether because of its amazing tones or its clean and geometric compositions. Cheng has worked with global brands and companies like Google, BMW, Nike, and many more, undoubtedly because of his amazing talent and ability to turn something ordinary into extraordinary and his superb grasp of colour.
Gideon de Kock is a South African film photographer that is now based in Hong Kong. De Kock is known for capturing the mundane everyday life and turning it into something beautiful; quirks and all. Not only is his style very documentative of Hong Kong’s local culture but it is also a great account to follow when wanting to take a break from the basic photos of Hong Kong and instead catch a glimpse into the daily lives of local Hongkongers.
Natalie Lau combines graphic design into her photography to create amazing images. One of her favourite combinations is playing around neon lights by exposing the picture twice to create a double exposure effect that looks effortlessly real. Not only does her passion for photography takes her around the world but she’s also won the Hong Kong Neon Lights Competition with her stunning pieces.
Having worked with major brands like Nike and Huawei, Elaine Li has created a name for herself as one of the top street and portrait photographers in Hong Kong and Melbourne. With over 268,000-plus followers on Instagram, Li has truly carved out a career for herself as an extremely talented and versatile photographer, especially with her attention to colour and natural lighting effects.
Tai Ng is an up-and-coming photographer in Hong Kong that specialises in street photography. His photographs capture the beauty of the ordinary in Hong Kong. Whether through the street markets, neon lights, or even just an unusually cast shadow, Ng has created spectacular photographs and is definitely worth checking out.
Starting his Instagram in 2011, Jeremy Cheung has created a name for himself as one of the most well-known Hong Kong-based freelance photographers. With his use of sunlight creating beautifully cinematic photos, his images make you feel like you are travelling into a dream-like world. Follow his Instagram for some amazing photos and collaborations with household brands like Canon, Audi, and PMQ.
Starting his account in 2013, Wilson Lee has grown to garner a following of over 81,000-plus followers on Instagram. Lee spends his time across Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Japan, where he snaps photos ranging from travel to documentative. You can now pre-order his new coffee table book, As Days Go By, where Wilson records the everyday life of Hongkongers during 2018 and 2019 through a visual diary.
With over 16,000-plus followers on Instagram, this account is a great spot to check out some amazing shots of Hong Kong through the lens of a supporting character; you can look at these photographs and feel as if you are immersed into the city and are the one seeing this scene. Not only are Ng’s colours and tones amazing, but his framing of the shot is very interesting and truly helps give his pictures a narrative.
With a mixture of different types of street photography like scenes to portraits, these photos not only are all taken on film but it also feels like you are travelling back in time to the 1980s with the tones and style of photographs. With that said, the photos still have a sense of modernity with the use of colour and locations Christopher Lim is in.
Last but not least, this is one of the most creative takes on street photography. Tommy Fung creates artwork that is genuinely out of the world but—due to the editing being so clean—it also somehow feels like it could be real. Fung’s Instagram is a great spot to stop at if you wish to be inspired by the sheer creativity that he applies to images.