This Tuesday, if you had walked around Tokyo, more precisely around the infamous Harajuku area, in front of Yoyogi Park, just after the rain stopped late afternoon, then you might have seen something a bit different than usual. It is not unusual to see small groups of girls and guys (usually girls) there dressed up louder than you could have ever imagined. Very often, these groups practice a ritual, which I’m still waiting for to vanish from this planet forever: cosplay, imitating characters from anime.
Sometimes, however, there are groups of fashion-frenzy young people, amazingly creative in their outfits, no less loud than the cosplay gangs but without all the weird stuff, you know. Without the weird stuff. That’s more my thing.
You would have seen such a bright group on Tuesday, surrounded by dozens of people with cameras, and a couple of VIPs. You would also have seen me, trying to bring order into the masses, apparently resembling a German shepard – as my friend pointed out. He probably wanted to make fun of me, but to me it sounds like a compliment.
Compliment or not, I didn’t have much time to think about how much I resemble a German shepard at that time, because I was guiding the A-TEAM and our beautiful models to some photo spots around Harajuku’s Takeshita Street and a couple places on the Omotesando side. This caused a bit of a tumult because of bystanders who had no idea what’s going on, and wanted to get a good shot of what they thought were celebrities or the like, but we had many locations to cover and the “get in there take photos and get out if you have the shot” military mission style tactic worked perfectly.
Here’s some more of the photos that I took at the event, enjoy!
In part one of this post I was talking about one half of the Yin and Yang of the creative process — ideas – and the importance of giving them space to incubate and develop. We also established that imitation is not inspiration, but often these two words are used interchangeably. Today in part two I want to talk about taking action.
I admit before I started interning at Magnum Photos I hardly new anything about their newer generation of photographers. It seems like there’s this huge gap in age – as a Magnum photographer either you’re born in the 1940s or earlier, or after the 70s. So I didn’t really know Peter van Agtmael before the day he showed up in our office, either (shame on me), and other than showing him where to find photo books here in Tokyo, there was not much time to learn more from him. So I did my research later and found the interview Vice magazine did with him.
As some of you probably already know, Vice magazine teamed up with Magnum Photos in March and features some of their photographers in an ongoing interview series called Vice loves Magnum. The interviews feature so far mainly the young generation of photographers of this historic cooperation – which I personally find very refreshing, since so much has already been written about the “old masters” like Henri Cartier-Bresson or Robert Capa, it’s time to move on.
On twitter and in the blogosphere the teaming up of Vice and Magnum has not been without some – at times harsh – criticism. Most of this criticism essentially goes in the direction of a high-quality “institution” like Magnum Photos being devaluated by sitting in the same boat with a “low-level” publication like Vice magazine. This sounds to me like the usual Internet whining of people having problems with adjusting to change. Get over it, the past won’t change. I never really read anything by Vice in depth other than the Magnum features, so I can’t put my hand in fire for the rest, but the interviews are definitely worth reading and sparked my hopes in the new generation of Magnum photographers.
Needless to say, I’m very curious about how this transition will go. This week in London is the big annual general meeting, where all Magnum photographers get together and discuss their future. Also, we will know if Peter van Agtmael will be accepted as a full member, further contributing to secure a bright new future of Magnum. Good luck, Peter.
P.S: They did the inaugural interview of the series with one of my absolute favorites of the “new generation” – Christopher Anderson – titled The Way Christopher Anderson Sees The World Is Amazing. His color photography is on the best way to be a huge influence on the way I see the world.
So much has been said and written about the “Creative Process,” it’s hard to add anything to that, but there’s still a lot to disagree about. The whole process to me is like the ☯ Yin and Yang, where one is “the idea”, and the other one is “action”. Today I want to talk more about “the idea.”
Memory is always biased. And memory is something very organic, changing, breathing, living. It is far from a static piece of information, stored away in some folder of your brain. Yet many people think that’s exactly what it is.
In fact, the more you try to remember something, the more this memory might change from how things really were. With every recollection, you are more and more convinced that what you could barely remember at first really happened the way you remember. Your memories become your past, your life.
Here, I am presenting some of the artists of last month with only one image per artist, which often only represents the scope of their work meagerly. To see more of each artist, check inspired by 7188 to see my personal preference (art critics would probably hate me for picking what I picked haha), or check the artist’s pages directly (by clicking on their names). Enjoy!
- © Li Hui
Her photos made my brain fuse pop right away, and then I felt some melty goodness in there. Silent and intimate, hidden and mysterious, very calm, sometimes lost. (link to blog)
- Spatiotemporal © azu sur
This is his photo “Spatiotemporal.” Very intriguing, like a portal to another world. I have no idea what kind of place this was taken at, but you can’t deny the magnetic attraction it has, can you. (link on blog)
- How can you distinguish good from bad photos?
- Everyone’s opinion is not of equal value.
artskill of observation
Do your photos matter? To you? To anyone?
That is the question I have been focusing on these days, but you tell me!
In an article titled “On the Strange Business of Mattering” Francis Hodgson put down his thoughts on the topic of “mattering,” how he calls it. Here’s a short video clip of him elaborating on his thoughts.
What distinguishes good photos from bad ones? And how do you find them in an ever increasing pile of crappy photos that accumulate in the millions each and every day?
Well, the answer lies in the question “Do they matter?” – to you, to the distributor, to the viewer. But, how do you know if they do?