Born and raised in Guilin, China, Dalong Yang began his professional career at Beijing-based advertising company 180. After two years working as a creative assistant and graphic designer, he left for school at The Ohio State University, where he studied marketing and operations.
Then came Columbus College of Art & Design, where he pursued a Master of Fine Arts in photography.
Yang said he chose CCAD because it’s “one of the best art schools in the Midwest, and it has really amazing facilities and good resources.” Plus, he said, “The MFA program is such an open program that helped me a lot in building up my own theory of creativity and art.”
Now Yang, who graduated CCAD in 2015, has a resume — and a travel itinerary — to admire.
A fashion fanatic who confesses to a “crazy love and immense zeal” for the industry, Yang has made a post-CCAD career out of work for Alexander Wang, Inc., Victoria’s Secret, Body & Bath Works and Mercedes Benz LLC in the past six years alone.
Inspired by what he described as a “personal supernatural experience,” Yang said he “sees the undisputed beauty in occultism and isolationism.”
Yang’s photography combines Western and Eastern culture with surreal elements in his own visual language, a language he describes as “classical but innovative, raw but mysterious.”
It’s a vision that has caught the attention of creative directors and fashion editors, who have brought his work to the pages of such fashion and lifestyle magazines as Vogue Italia, Marie Claire, Harper’s BAZAAR, Schön! Magazine, Adon, and Bullett Media.
Yang’s work has also taken him all over the world, from his home base in New York City to the Republic of Maldives; Beijing and Shanghai, China; Hong Kong, Taiwan; Warsaw, Poland; and Le Grand-Saconnex, Switzerland; travels he documents on Facebook and Instagram.
Yang admitted he didn’t always enjoy the jet-setting life, “but it’s getting better now.”
“I like meeting up with different teams from different countries while working and sharing our views and techniques with each other,” he continued. “This really makes me feel that art has no boundaries. Also, I get to see and experience beautiful scenery and cultures, and they are definitely inspiring.”
Below, Yang discusses three of his favorite photographs, all part of a series, Shanghai Baby, which was chosen by the Vogue Italia digital team to be a front-page feature on the media company’s website.
“It was really an honor to me as a newcomer in the industry,” said Yang.
Shanghai Baby 1
Shanghai Baby 2
Shanghai Baby 3
For Shanghai Baby 3, I really didn’t expect to catch the moment — the guy seemed kissing the direction where the rabbit statue’s middle finger is. Moreover, the two Chinese letters on the statue's shirt mean “China.” This is really hilarious for me and I feel like it strongly represents the very fun personalities rooted in local people in Shanghai (with some black humor, of course).