Shirley-YuI was born in Beijing in 1994. I came to Brooklyn, NY to live in America with my parents in 1998. We moved to Edison, New Jersey in 1999 and have resided here ever since.My Parents worked as software developers at the world trade center until 2001. luckily, they had only lost their jobs.

I grew up with an artistic spirit with many fine arts classes and creative friends. I was never too great at advanced math or classical musical instruments (even though a lot of strangers / non-asian friends think I must be).

In my early teens, I developed a passion is photography and a dream that it would become my career.

Always on my mind that my parents came to this country so that I could have a better life and more opportunities for higher education, I’ve developed high expectations of myself, millions of long term goals and an extreme fear of failure.

This didn’t cope very well with my creative pursuits. I wasn’t about to drop out of school to become an artist or consider paying the EXORBITANT tuition to attend art school. A lot of people ask me why I’m still in school or why I’m in school for the things I’m in school for.

I was raised to be smart about my life and have the long term on my mind. For my parents, I vowed finish college, and have a degree to fall back on so I can make them proud regardless of where my photography takes me.

For the past five years, during the nights, weekends, summers and winters, I practice my photography (also: network, assist working photographers, study lighting, etc) all the while balancing my schoolwork in the hope that I’m good enough to make a full-time career with my photography after I obtain my bachelors with A MAJOR IN INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY AND A MINOR IN COMPUTER SCIENCE.

As an immigrant with a collective mentality, I’ve experienced a lot of inner conflict on pursuing my individual passions (if that’s a selfish thing to do, or not) but I’ve realized that with some hard work, long-term planning and delayed gratification…I can cover all my bases.

At the end of my college experience in two years, I will have an awesome photography portfolio and degree / stable career a fall back on.

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