Maika Elan (Nguyen Thanh Hai) is a freelance photographer based in Ho Chi Minh city, Vietnam. After studying sociology at the University of Social Sciences and Humanities in Hanoi, Maika started to take pictures of her daily and private life in 2008. She turned to professional photography soon after, starting with collaborations for editorial clients and fashion firms in Vietnam. In 2010 Maika moved to documentary photography and her first project called ‘The Pink Choice’, focused on the personal life of gay couples in Vietnam, has been published in many international magazines, on print and online.
Some of her typical works: Inside Hanoi, The Pink Choice, Aint' Talkin' Just Lovin', Like My Father, It Felt Safe Here....
Now she works as Photo Editor for Forbes Vietnam Magazine.
Maika Elan was double-awarded for the “best photo essay” and the “best single photo” in 2010 at Indochina Media Memorial Foundation and in 2012 The Pink Choice was finalist at Asian Women Photographers.
The Pink Choice won 1st prize stories, Contemporary Issues, at World Press Photo 2013 and 1st prize documentary story at Pride Photo Award 2013.
Maika also participant in the 2013 Joop Swart Masterclass in Amsterdam, Holand and sellected for the VII Mentor program from 2014-2016.
Maika's name is also honored in the Forbes Vietnam 30under30 list in 2014
In 2017, Maika is one of the six selected talents of the first 6x6 Global Talent Program in Southeast Asia & Oceania - an initiative organized by The World Press Photo Foundation.
WOMEN IN PHOTOGRAPHY at Objectifs, Singapore.
#DYSTURB - #WOMENMATTER, Preus Museum, Horten, Norway.
LIVEABLE CITIES, Quito, Ecuador.
NO TO SORROW, Goethe Institut, Hanoi, Vietnam.
GUATE PHOTO, Guatemala, Central America.
DISLOCATION/NEGOTIATING IDENTITY, Massachusetts, United States.
JAKATAR BIENNALE 2015, Indonesia.
PHOTOQUAI - musée du quai Branly, Paris, France.
THE PINK CHOICE, Copenhagen, Denmark.
LIKE MY FATHER, Hanoi, Vietnam.
FAMILY SNAP, Chiang Mai, Thailand
DOCfield, Barcelona, Spain
PRAGUE PRIDE, Czech Republic
GETXOPHOTO, Bilbao, Spain
CAN YOU SEE ME?, Singapore
MADE IN ASIA, Toulouse, France
QUEER FESTIVAL, Florencia, Italy
CHOBI MELA, Dhaka, Bangladesh.
THE PINK CHOICE, Goethe Institut, Hanoi, Vietnam.
WORLD EVENT YOUNG ARTISTS, Nottingham, UK.
EMERGENCY ROOM, Hanoi, Vietnam.
CREATIVE ECONOMIES, Kulalumpur, Malaysia.