Hello, I am Youngrae Kim, a freelance visual journalist and a photojournalism fellow at City Bureau in Chicago. 

I was born and raised in Seoul, South Korea in a traditional Korean family. After high school, I moved to America to study photojournalism and have spent most of my adult years living and working in the Midwest. 

My curiosity about people drives my work. I look for moments that are surprising in their humor or emotional intimacy, that reveal the essence of interesting and compelling characters. In documentary storytelling, I’m drawn to stories about broken families and the bonds that remain, the quiet struggles and triumphs of ordinary people, and the tension between long-established tradition and modern realities. 

My editorial clients include the Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, European Pressphoto Agency, Columbia Daily Tribune, and Fatherly. Previously, I worked for MLive Muskegon Chronicle, the Columbia Missourian and The Maneater. I’m an alumnus of The Missouri Photo Workshop 68 in Cuba, Missouri, where I received the Cliff & Vi Award for my story, “The Family Man.” My news and feature photographs were recognized by The Missouri Press Association’s 2017 Better Newspaper Contest.

I’m a 2016 graduate of the University of Missouri, Columbia, with a Bachelor of Journalism, emphasis in photojournalism and minor in philosophy.

Outside of journalism, I served as a special assault commando for the Republic of Korea Army from 2013 to 2015. Now I spend my spare time cooking with my beautiful wife Anna.


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