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Magazine
Results Contest : Urban Night photography

by Yvette Depaepe
Published the 25
th of May 2022

 

The urban space at night is very challenging and interesting. The great thing about urban night photography is that subjects that appear commonplace during the day take on a new, interesting appearance at night.

The winners with the most votes in this contest are:

1st place: Mohammad Dadsetan    
2nd place: Dieter Reichelt   
3rd place : Erhard Batzdorf   

Congratulations to the winners and honourable mentions and thanks to all the participants in the contest 'Urban night photography'.

 


'Night Landscape photography'
is the currently running theme.
Photographing landscapes at night is a way to get intriguing photos. Landscape night-time photography can be a challenge initially, particularly with annoying noise and field depth issues that lower the imagery’s quality.

This contest will end at midnight on Sunday the 5th of June 2022.
The sooner you upload your submission the more chance you have to gather the most votes.
If you haven't uploaded your photo yet, click here

Good luck to all the participants.

 

1st place: by Mohammad Dadsetan

 

 


2nd place : by Dieter Reichelt

 

 


3rd place: by Erhard Batzdorf

 

 

HONOURABLE  MENTIONS

 

by Markus Aucherbach 

 

 


by Marcel Egger

 

 

by Roland Weber  

 

 

by J-A Chazal   

 

 

by Zina Heg

 

 

by Yann Houlberg Andersen

 

 

by Ariel Ling

Write
Wonderful collection!! Many compliments to the Winners!
Congratulations to the winners and all the participants!
Congrats to all for these amazing photos!
Wonderful pictures, congrats to all!
Wonderful night photo collection, congratulations to all winners, appreciation to all participants
Excellent shots, congratulations to all winners
Congratulations to the winners and honourable mentions in the contest Urban Night photography and many thanks to all the participants. Cheers, Yvette
Photography and Belief

by Editor Peter Davidson
Published by Yvette Depaepe, the 23rd of May

 

'Body language' by Lorenzo Grifantini

 

Following on from co-founder Jacob Jovelou examination of the smartphone camera
(
[1] Mobile Photography - iPhone 13 Pro vs S22 Ultra vs Pixel 6 Pro (1x.com), perhaps the time has come to ask if the time is up for the singular photograph (or image, if you will.


Does the singular image have the same importance it once had?
Do people still stand, discuss and critique and evaluate an image?
Unless it's hanging on a wall, probably not
.


For the vast majority of photographers, the only way to have your image seen publicly is not on a wall or in a real gallery, but online. By that I mean  Instagram/TikTok/1x etc. Galleries, made of real bricks and mortar are rarified indeed. The great unwashed, the unknown snapper, (they, we, I,) have no other option. And it's here that there is an increasing problem with photography.


The smartphone camera is changing the world and the display of photography is changing everything we used to believe in. Now, thanks to TikTok and Instagram even the photographic format is changing. The new standard image format will become a vertical 9x16 image, even for landscapes. The vast volume of images that cascade onto our screens today is unstoppable and it's changing our world. Everyone is taking pictures all the time everywhere and then sharing it on-line. Instantly.

 

 9.16 format landscape images


David Levi Strauss examines the consequences of this in his new book.
“Images that appear on the screens of our devices go by in a streaming flow. Individual images are seldom apprehended separately, as a singular trace. Singular, still images operate very differently on the mind. The images in a flow are seldom dwelled on, so their individual effect is limited, creating instead a disproportionately generalized effect.”

 

This then, has the potential to change how we see and think about photography fundamentally. What we believe in and what we trust is changing radically. This is happening here on this site as well. The tendency even with limited 'curated' images, still allows for a vast number of images to be shown. The 'flow' then takes effect as I, and probably many others as well, scan through without stopping to dwell upon any one image unless it holds our attention for a second longer than normal. Unless constantly guarded against, this closed-loop effect of even curated images can compound  rather than alleviate the problem, giving a disproportionate and unintentional end result by creating a kind of homogenization of creativity.

 

Whoever the gatekeepers of creativity are, curators are just people. And however much they may guard against their own bias, it's always there. Galleries of course, have no option but to rely on this bias to provide a standard (or style) to which they hold. But with so many images to curate, complacency creeps in (as it always will). This bias/style if too obvious, may become gamed or copied by those competing for exposure, thereby increasing the predictability of form and content as an inevitable consequence. A danger that must be constantly guarded against. This effect is most clearly apparent on platforms like Instagram and others where certain styles are dominating the flow because of the closed-loop feedback. Images that do not conform are ignored. The end result of both forms of image consumption is a general diminishing of photography itself and the form may indeed become (if it hasn't already) irrelevant - as far as the individual image is concerned.
Sadly, we may all have to 'go with the flow'.

 

Is there an answer?
Well yes, there is. Predictably, the answer as always must come from oneself, from within. The desire to 'compete' must be attenuated and replaced with a greater desire to satisfy - not the platform - but oneself. This is not to say we should not be influenced by our peers, after all we all stand on the shoulders of giants. But however unable we are to stand against the 'flow', we can at least stand aside and try our best not be swept along. The current trend of increasing artifice in photography grows from this desire to stand out from the flow of images. Leading images to become ever more extreme in style, design and process, precisely because to be seen within the flow, they must stand out. 

 

The thing is, I believe photography, really shouldn't be a game.
But that is only my opinion, many think it is precisely that, as proven by GuruShots which is an online photography game that is hugely popular.
Where then, does photography go from here?
I don't know, but I do know I'm struggling to embrace the new standard vertical 9x16 format.

 

I'd like to leave you with a link to the photographer, David Eustace. He makes beautiful, thoughtful and contemplative images that don't need to shout. Even when he uses a smartphone. Enjoy. https://www.davideustace.com/mementomorivolumei

 

AND ... Enjoy this short compilation of recent images from different categories out of the 1x gallery ...

 

'Passed the basket'by Theo Luycx

 

 

'Oops!' by Victoria Ivanova

 

 

'Naboo Royan Palace' by Javier de la Torre

 

 

'Displaying egret' by Cami Marculescu

 

 

'Sans titre' by Christopher Méthot

 

 

'Walakiri beach' by Sally Widjaja

 

 

'Practice' by Kogame

 

 

'Showing the corn grains in a market in Benin' by Joxe Inazio Kuesta Garmendia

 

 

'In the streets of the Old Town' by Eduards Kapsha

 

 

'Tranquility' by Kenneth Zeng

 

 

'7462' by Enrique Izquierdo

 

 

'Misty spring' by Marcin Orszulak

Write
Very interesting article, excellent subject for future discussion on this actual topic. Splendid photo collection. Many thanks Peter and Yvette.
Thank you Miro!
Thank you, Miro !
Doing it differently is important!
Indeed!
Peter, Thank you for the article. You've identified the problem and offered a solid solution in the paragraph headed 'Is there an answer?' Circa 1840, painter, Paul Delaroche, saw a photograph for the first time and declared 'From this day, painting is dead'. Painting still lives. I believe Photography will survive the flood of internet images. The cure for 'Photo Fatigue' is to make meaningful images. Photos of what the world means rather than what the world looks like. I believe they will continue to shine through.
Timely and excellent reflection
Thanks Steven, but frankly, I am not so sure photography as we know it, will survive. Big changes ahead in how we create, perceive and how photography can remain relevant.
I had to highlight this paragraph. “Images that appear on the screens of our devices go by in a streaming flow. Individual images are seldom apprehended separately, as a singular trace. Singular, still images operate very differently on the mind. The images in a flow are seldom dwelled on, so their individual effect is limited, creating instead a disproportionately generalized effect.” Very true in a World bombed by imagery discrete selection gives away to a blur of visual inputs. How to manage it?
Many thanks Francisco!
" The desire to 'compete' must be attenuated and replaced with a greater desire to satisfy - not the platform - but oneself ", I have to highlight this statement .. nice article, well done.
Many thanks Yousif.
Very relevant article, yes I also feel we are at crossroads of photography , change is inevitable….beautiful images shared, congratulations to photographers
Thanks Anita, yes, change is always inevitable and is much better than stagnation.
Very interesting article and beautiful selection of images. I believe every passionate photographer has a story to tell and should be searching for his/her own original language to express it. Being inspired by trends or others' work is a positive thing inasmuch as it does not make one a blind follower of what seems popular or successful.
Thanks Ludmila, yes, being inspired by others is always good!
Kogame PRO
I'm honored you chose me!
Peter, I very much enjoyed your article, it represents a struggle that many of us go through, do I choose my subjects and techniques to be popular (and get "likes") or do I stay true and capture what speaks to, and about, me, my photographic journey, my way, for me (my form of selfie :-). What I think the "new world order" of the photographic social media formats has done though, is offered me options, to see similar scenes in a different way, enhance a few extra skills that I probably wouldn't have otherwise considered or chosen. At the end of the day though, I think many artist will continue to chose to compose for themselves first and foremost. Trends come and go, sadly we have become a disposable world in so any ways, including in photography; true vision, talent and skill however is timeless. Hold fast.
Thank you Kimberley for such a well considered reply, I can but agree!
Thank you very much for the selection! Great article!
Thanks Victoria!
Congratulations to the authors of the superb selected images.
Excellent article, Peter ... A 'thinker' that we cannot ignore. Thanks for your fine contribution to the magazine. Cheers, Yvette
Many thanks Yvette, and for a great selection of images.
Ans Roels : capturing the soul of horses

by Yvette Depaepe
Published the 20st of May 2022

 

Ans Roels combines like no one else her two passions: photography and horses. She loves to be the ‘absent’ photographer and let her models be in their natural way of doing, having the feeling I don’t exist. There is no other way to work with animals, in particular horses.  Every horse is unique and has its own energy.  Ans feels that energy and put it into her images.  She succeeds to capture their soul, their spirit, their pride, their purity and their personality. Read more about this warm and sensitive lady photographer through this interview.

 

'Yes. I'm real …'

 

Dear Ans, please tell us about yourself, your hobbies and other jobs.
I’m Ans, 39 years old, living near beautiful Bruges in Belgium and mother of 2 children. Besides photography, sports and especially horse are the things I could not live without.
For 15 years,  I’ve been a French teacher. I really loved my job. But I felt that teaching my 15 year old students all about French grammar and verbs wasn’t my priority. What I enjoyed most, were the long and honest conversations I had with them about life, feelings, future goals… They were so inspiring to me and hopefully, I was inspiring them.
When photography suddenly came into my life, it kept on developing from hobby to passion, to full-time job. I can call myself full-time photographer for 2 years now. It means working hard and being a goer. It comes with ups and downs, but it makes me feel like the richest person on earth: being able to turn my passion into my job. I wish everyone to be that lucky.

 

 'Light in the dark'

 

 

'Joyful Sorraia... #5

 

Which are your most important experiences that has influenced your art?
People who have been following my work for some time, may already have noticed my love for Portugal, especially the Portuguese horse breed: the Lusitano. It's is the common theme throughout my work. Some 15 years ago Zapata came into my life. My own Lusitano stallion, my soulmate. He came all the way from sunny Portugal to cold, rainy Belgium. Since then, we’ve never separated...
I can’t explain, but I was already listening to Fado music when I was a child. So my love for Portugal, its people, its culture, its music and last but not least its horses, must have been written in the stars.
All horses are beautiful of course, but to me the Lusitano seems like a creature on its own. Nothing can be compared to its spirit, power, looks and personality. Whenever I can, you will find me in this beautiful country enjoying and photographing the Lusitano horse.  Even in Belgium and the Netherlands, he seems to find me and appears in front of my lens very often.

 

'Silence'

 

 

'There was a girl'

 

 

'Menina'

 

What first attracted you to photography?
Initially I didn’t have anything with photography at all. It really was an unexpected discovery suddenly becoming part of myself. To me the prove that anything can happen in life and you just need to go with the flow.
I bought my first camera some 12 years ago, because at that time, I wanted good pictures from my dog. Little did I know a camera has so many buttons and settings. Let’s say I was quite naive. My pictures were terrible! I didn’t even know I needed different type of lenses until I started taking pictures. 
I started studying on my own. Trail and error. Listening to and learning from other photographers telling me to look to my own pictures in a critical way. Soon it became clear I had a photographer’s eye… And so the story began. Photography became a passion, a part of myself. When I take pictures, I forget about the world. It’s my way to express emotion, to put my personality into something I create.

 

Describe your overall photographic vision.
To me, having a photographic philosophy/vision is gold. Who you are and what you believe in, is interwoven in your work. It gives your images a soul and it’s the most beautiful way to express unspoken feelings: to tell a story.
As I always say: ‘My goal is to capture the soul’.
And I keep that in mind while photographing. I love my work to be pure and honest.
Whatever images I create, I always hold on to spontaneity. I love to be the ‘absent’ photographer and let my models be in their natural way of doing, having the feeling I don’t exist. There is no other way to work with animals, in particular horses. I like to observe and get to know them. I want to discover their purity, their soul. Every horse is unique and has its own energy.  I want to feel that energy and put it into the image.

 

'From the sea...'

 

 

'Horsepower in spotlight...'

 

 

'Bless this mess...'

 

 

'Seahorse'

 

Why are you so drawn by Animal and more specifically Horse Photography?
What I like most in life, is following my heart, following nature. Life can surprise us at any moment. Either good or bad and there’s nothing we can control. In the end, something bad can turn into something positive as it makes us grow and reflect about ourselves and our life.
All we have is now… Sometimes we forget to live in the present, because we are always worried about what happened in the past or because we want to control the future. Neither of this is possible. Meanwhile, we forget to live. That’s why I like working with animals. They’re uncontrollable, unpredictable. They live in the moment and while working with them we are forced to do the same.
Horses have been human’s most loyal companion in good, but above all in bad times. Besides my love for the animal, I always feel a huge amount of respect. Honestly, it’s an honour to picture these animals.

 

'Together... #3'

 

 

'Together... #2'

 

 

'Together... #1'

 

What is more important to you, the mood,/story behind your images or the technical perfection?
If it comes to technique, I’m not at all a queen. Although I believe technique is very important. It can save you in difficult circumstances, conditions. But I’d rather  call myself a belly photographer. What I feel, is what I do. It makes me feel very humble sometimes when looking at technical masterpieces of my colleagues.
Of course I like my pictures to be technically as perfect as possible. But for me emotion and mood are most important.
Creating a picture is a process. From clicking the button to the finishing touch is like a  journey. It’s like a story you write. My main purpose is to touch, inspire and grab people’s attention. Emotion is something unique. One can be touched when seeing the image, while the other feels nothing at all… There is nothing deeper and more personal than emotion. You can never ever convince or force someone to feel the same as you do.
I think that’s the exciting thing about creating and experiencing art!

 

'I see you...'

 

 

'The eye...'

 

 

'All black'

 

What generally is your relationship to your subject matter beyond being an observer?
I didn’t just start photographing horses by accident 😉
Horses have been a passion since I was a child. Let’s say I breathe horses. I started horse riding when I was 6 years old. Now I’m 39 and I still can’t imagine myself not being among horses. I believe that the more you know about the subject you’re photographing, the more you ‘feel’ your subject, the better your images become.
Working with horses somehow feels natural to me. I know their behaviour, the way they move, their body language. All very important skills if you want to capture horses in a good way. Colleague photographers often tell me this is the most difficult subject to photograph. I don’t know if that’s true. What I do know is that it’s not at all easy to picture a horse in a way so its power, elegance, personality and energy almost seem to pop out of the picture.
A strong, powerful and impressive young stallion can easily look like a common retired horse if you as a photographer don’t know how to picture it. Using the right angle, point of view, knowing the right timing to push the button. And then coming home and being able to select the right pictures when it comes to the expression of the horse.
I believe that whether you are photographing an Olympic Champion or a retired 25 year old horse, you should always aim for that elegance, power and personality in your picture.
Photographing a horse for the first time is always a process of getting to know each other. While having a photo shoot, you’re creating a bond. We have a different energy, me and that horse. While working together we try to find, understand and feel each other. The ultimate way to get to know my model, is when I can ride it. Which often happens. A big amount of trust and the finest communication is needed if horse and rider want to become one. Working together creates a bond. There is only one way to blend together, that’s when trusting and understanding each other.
Once I’ve experienced the horse’s energy, I often feel like becoming a team which feels so good and ends up in even better results.

 

Do you prepare carefully the locations where you are intending to photograph?
It depends on what images I have in mind. If I have the chance to do so, then I’m lucky and I can get the best out of it. I often have a chat with the owner about the location where the horse is staying at that moment. It’s the best way to know the possibilities and limits once I start taking pictures. Some horses just don’t feel like being moved to another location, which means I have to deal with the circumstances available. Sometimes the location is not charming at all. Then I have to use the maximum of my creativity. Difficult, yes, but also very challenging. Which I like.  It’s also something you learn by doing it time after time. Arriving somewhere, not knowing what to expect and then scanning the whole location to see all possibilities as quick as possible.

What gear do you use (camera, lenses, bag)?

Currently, I’m using a Canon 1D and the Canon lens L series 70-200mm for portraits as well as for action shots.

 

What software do you use to process your images?

Let’s say 30% Lightroom and 70% Photoshop.

 

Can you tell us something more about your work flow?
I always start in Lightroom to do the first adjustments. I like my picture to look correct (light, colours and crop). It is important to me that the image looks natural and close to the original. Then I go to Photoshop to add some extra mood, atmosphere and dimension. Usually I’m not into big manipulations. I like to add every adjustment in a subtle way to end up with a nice result.
Anyway, every editing process is a journey. It is like a short trip, while sometimes it is like travelling around the world. As much as I like photographing, I really enjoy the whole process of editing and watching my picture changing into what I have or had in mind.
That’s how it goes most of the time.  But it also happens that pictures turn out to be totally different from what I had in mind, at the end. In my humble opinion, being flexible and open-minded while photographing as well as while editing is a great value to have as photographer.


Who are your favourite photographers and more importantly, how has your appreciation of their work affected how you approach your own photography? 
It’s difficult to name just one photographer in particular. I really believe that any photographer of whatever level, whether he or she is ‘just’ a hobbyist or a pro/ beginner or advanced can create a picture that can blow you away.
But yes, some photographers leave you blown away with EVERY picture they create. Just because they stay true to themselves, to their own style, to what they believe in. Just because they breathe what they picture and create and to me, that's the most important quality a photographer or artist should have. It’s not the easiest path to follow but it’s definitely the most honest and purest one. A wonderful example is my Portuguese colleague Rita Fernandes. I’ve known her work for many years and she has always been a photographer I admired. To me, she’s a great example of what the combination of passion for photography and horses (in particular the Lusitano horse) result in. Years ago my wish was to create pictures like Rita does, but throughout time I’ve learned that it’s not about ‘being like someone’. It’s about being yourself and knowing how to use and develop your own qualities, finding your own photography strength, creating and holding on to your own style. That’s when you’re exploring your own photography path. A never ending journey: fortunately.


Is there any specific photo taken by another photographer that has inspired you a lot and why?  
I would like to share this piece of art by Rita Fernandes.
To me it is the ultimate example of how beautiful simplicity can be. The unique and impressive expression of the Lusitano horse speaks for itself. It almost seems like a statue, yet alive. To picture this animal in such strong way, it ca only be done by someone who is deeply passionate about the horse breed and about the art of photography.

 

By Rita Fernandes

 

Are there any specific directions that you would like to take your photography in the future or any specific goals that you wish to achieve?
My biggest goal is and will always remain, to inspire people by creating pictures and teaching about my passion. To me that’s the most satisfying feeling to have. Of course I would be dishonest not to admit that I would love my photographic level to grow forever. Let’s say the sky is the limit.

 

 'Like a rock...'

 

Describe your favourite photograph taken by you and why it is special to you? 
Pictures in which my own horse, Zapata, is featured, often are very special to me. Photographing my boy is always a challenge. Capturing the soul I know so well, often leaves me with doubts about the end result. It’s like it’s never good enough. It’s like I’m not able to look at the picture in a spectator’s point of view.
One I love very much, one I could watch forever, is the one with Zapata and Patrick. You can read the story behind below this image in my portfolio.

 

'Imperfectly perfect'

 

Another, is the one with the three Portuguese ladies. It represents the typical atmosphere during the well-known National Horse Fair in Golegã, Portuguese culture and tradition, the beauty and power of women and last but not least, the Lusitano horse, who is the king of the whole event. A picture which has a special place on my wall at home…

 

 

Is there anything else you wish to add  and what do you think about 1X as a home base for your work?

First of all I would like to thank 1X and in particular Yvette Depaepe for inviting me to this interview.  When I decided to become member of the great 1X six years ago, I considered myself to be gullible thinking I would ever get one of my pictures to be published. Not in a million years I could ever believe this would happen. But it did…
Since then, 1X has become one of the most important references to the quality of my work. I never will get used to receive an email announcing one of my pictures is published or even better: awarded. It always makes my day.
Being invited for this interview really means the world to me. Knowing that the 1x team considers my work to be of high quality, to be published and/or awarded is a huge honour. It is and will remain my biggest motivation to challenge myself and aim higher.

 

Write
I love and admire your work for some time now, it's always a feast for the eye to see new work. Congratulations !
love your work and interview!!
Excellent work
verdon PRO
Breathtaking, great interview , magnificent portfolio , congratulations
Excellent shots and connection with horses
Wonderful interview down to eart and impressive work, I can feel the affinity, the connection you have with "your" horses.
Gorgeous!!
Great interview and beautiful portraits of horses. Thank you for sharing the magic!
Grazie mille questo bellissimo articolo, e le belle fotografie. I cavalli sono eccezionali, con tutti gli altri animali su questa meravigliosa terra.
*meaningful way
Wonderful interview and story behind these amazing images. I understand so well the connection between the photographer and the horse having spend many years in the field with a herd of 18 horses at my former riding stable. Every word here connects with me in such a deep and manful way. Thank you for sharing your photography and equine journey!
'Nature Impressions' by Roswitha Schleicher-Schwarz

by Yvette Depaepe 
Published the 18th of May 2022

 

'Exhibitions' is a powerful tool to create online exhibitions with your photos. You can add quotes, change the order of your photos and align them in different ways and change the size. Just like a gallery curator arranging prints on the walls of an exhibition you can do the same. The landing page on your profile is an exhibition which you can customize, you can also add more exhibitions and decide which one should be your landing page.

 
A succesful exhibition will be published in the magazine on a regular base.
You can present some of your favourite exhibitions by adding text – stories or quotes – to make them even more attractive and to be selected.  Maybe the next one will be yours.

 

In the spotlights today, the exhibition 'Nature Impressions' by Roswitha Schleicher-Scharwz which is currently running in Starnberg (Germany).
Nature impressions by Roswitha Schleicher-Schwarz (1x.com)

To trigger your curiosity, here are a few images. 

  

'snow walker'


 

'sailing trip'

 

 

'birch umbrella'

 

 

Write
Amazing horsepictures <3 I have done a lot of horsepictures in my time and would love to do something like this :)
So many thanks Dorte!
Looks like very interesting work. I believe its impact lies in the full body of work. Would really like to see it.
Thank you so much Francisco!
Wonderful work, congrats!!
Many thanks Helena!
Herzlichen Glückwunsch zur Präsentation hier liebe Roswitha!! Deine Bilder haben immer wieder das ganz Besondere!
Ganz lieben Dank, Andreas!
Excellent works , many congratulations
Thank you so much Aguaneigra!
Nice, pleasant to watch and inspiring ,Congratulations.
So many thanks Mladen!
Beautiful images…congratulations
Thanks a lot Anita!
Wunderbare Arbeiten, die mich immer wieder begeistern!
Dankeschön, Susanne!
Wonderful nature images with a personal signature. Love it dear Roswitha. My compliments
So many thanks dear Arnon!
Congratulation, wonderful work
Many thanks Rolf!
Eine wunderbare Ehrung deiner kreativen Arbeiten und hochverdient. Glückwunsch Roswitha!!!!
Ganz lieben Dank, Erhard!
Fantastic works, congratulations 🎊
So many thanks Thomas!
Nochmals viel Erfolg in Starnberg Roswitha! "Sailing trip" kannte ich noch nicht, ganz vorzüglich...!
Ich danke dir herzlichst, Hans Günther!
Colourful reflections on Tokyo's rainy nights

 

Interview / tutorial by Editor Michel Romaggi in collaboration with the author Yuzo Fujii 
Edited and published by Yvette Depaepe published the 17th of May 2022

 

Yuzo’s night street photos are full of life and beauty. They reveal picturesque characters appearing in magical places enhanced by the colourful neon lights and beautiful reflections on the wet sidewalks and pavements. He was kind enough to reveal some secrets of his wonderful night street shots.

 

'Ueno Shower'

 

Dear Yuzo, thank you very much for accepting to answer my questions.
Can you first introduce yourself and tell us what place photography has in your life?

I live near Tokyo and my office is located in the center of Tokyo. Most of my works were taken in that city.
I run a well-designed products company because I love art and design.
I've started photography 7 years ago. Photography is Art, I think. So now it's part of my life. In the beginning, I started with landscapes, looking for spectacular sceneries where many other photographers go, and took photos who weren't unique. But I wanted to show my originality by shooting famous places.
Recently,
I found the right place to be to me, being street photography because I could combine original compositions, right timing, precious chances, stories  and emotions all together in one photo. Craig Semetko, an American photographer, says that good photographs are based on a "DIET" with four key elements:

D: Design =
geometry and composition

I: Information = context or story

E: Emotion = viewer feel something

T: Timing = perfect and right moment.

I agree with him and asked myself: "Is this pic fulfilling that DIET?" every time I shoot.

 

'Shinjuku Rainy Mood'

 

Can you tell us what specifically attracts you in such photographs? What are you trying to convey through them?

As I'm a businessman, I love shooting Tokyo night scenes not only because I'm a daytime business person, but also because it's more fun to take pictures at night. As you know, neons, lights, ..... colours of the Tokyo night scenes are so gorgeous and brilliant, and kind of random and chaotic. I like to compare it to  "cyberpunk". You will not get bored of Tokyo night photography because you can take tons of different photographs even at the same place every day. You can express your originality in the composition and timing.

 

How do you choose the scenes you photograph?

In street photography, one thinks it is important to take photos of "emotions" on the subject's face, laugh, smile, tears, fears...
You all know the popular quote from Robert Capa : "If your pictures aren't good enough, you're not close enough".  But
, as you may know, Japanese tend not to overexpress emotions in public spaces. If you stand on this point of view, you will get stuck.
Also, taking a photo of a stranger's face is unacceptable in Japan. So I pay attention to the balance between subject/near view, middle view, and distant view. It's the same as for landscape photography. My goal is to take interesting photos of people in the near viewn  story-telling in middle view and distant view to add a 3D perspective to the 2D photographs. I also love rain and umbrellas in street photography. Roads, grounds,...everything shines. You can take beautiful reflections on puddles. Colourful umbrellas and raincoats make your subjects really stand out.

 

 'Telephone Box'

 

Can you tell us how you capture these snapshots of daily life?

In street candid photography, I normally use the pre-focus technique with range finder manual focus lenses, such as LEICA M series. I already design my composition before I shoot. I consider what is the middle view and what is the distant view for me.
Then I think about what and where the subject should be.
I point to the focus area there. It's almost pinpoint. Then, I wait until the right subject comes to the focus point.
Wait, wait, and wait. If you are lucky, it's 5 minutes waiting. Sometimes 30 minutes... That's street photography.
But I enjoy being patient. It's still exciting. I'm not used to auto-focus tracking. I won't move the focus point by myself.
I love wide open large-aperture lenses like Noctilux(F0.95-F1.25), and Summilux (F1.4). Because I don't like high ISO noise, I want my subject to stand out and have dreamy look.
It's difficult to nail focus with F0.95, F1.25, and even F1.4 lenses in the case of candid street photography. That's why I use pre-focus tracking.
When you get done with it, you will have a maximum of satisfaction. Even at night, you will have an excellent separation between the subject and others and a wonderful clean low ISO photograph.

 

'Cyberpunk Tokyo'

 

What equipment did you use, what settings did you choose, and what steps to achieve 'Ueno shower'?

My recent all-camera gears are LEICA.
Before, I used Fujifilm's APS-C camera gears. I love Fujifilm's colour science. It's so amazing in good light conditions.
But in dark circumstances, the APS-C format is a little shorter quality than the full-frame format. LEICA cameras/lenses are surprisingly outstanding in bad light conditions.
For this shot, the forecast said a sudden shower might happen in the afternoon. During the rain season, there are a lot of showers in Tokyo. That day, I was thinking about where I should take photos if it happens.
I love the scene where neons and signs light up raindrops and make roads shine.
Ueno's popular alley " AMEYA YOKOCHO" was one of the best locations..I stood at the entrance of AMEYA YOKOCHO. I love that position because you can look out over the alleywhich has a very nice curve.
It's rare that I take a zoom lens for street photography. But because of the weather, I took the LEICA Vario Elmarit SL 24-90mm lens with LEICA SL for weather sealing.
This lens widest aperture is F2.8. Shutter speed 1/125 sec, which I always choose for night street photography. With this shutter speed, you can stop people from moving with a rather low ISO setting. In that case, my auto ISO setting was 500.

 

'Kabukicho Reflection'

 

How did you post-processed it?

Recently, I purchased "DxO PureRAW 2". I also have the former version, but I haven't used it because it didn't support LEICA SL, SL2. DxO PureRAW 2 started to support lots of cameras such as LEICA, Fuji-X trans.
I tested to open UENO SHOWER's raw file with this application and was surprised to find the result was amazingly good!  ISO noise is so clear!  And the colours and tonalities are far better than Adobe Raw.
If you often use DxO PureRAW 2 supported camera, and you like night photography, I highly recommend you the free test software.
The view adds a 3D image to the composition. I think the "vanishing point" is important for a good photo.My Lightroom Post process setting was nothing special.
I love LightRoom's standard colour preset Cinematic. I selected CN04, for it.
No HDR, No photoshop.

 

 'Tokyo Lantern Alley'

 

 

Write
What a beautiful collection, and I love the "DIET" theory, true for all types of photography! Thank you very much for sharing!
WOW!! Thank you for watching and reading! I'm so honored!
Wonderful work and mood. An attractive combination of colour, space and shapes.
Francisco Goncalves, Thank you for the comment! I'm so honred.
藤井さん! マガジンで紹介されるなんてすごいですね〜〜。流石です!! おめでとうございます😊
Takahide Makino さんご覧いただきありがとうございます~!世界に見てもらえて嬉しいです!