Back on the street

I actually have not ventured out on the street with the right inspired mood on me for quite some time now. I missed that feeling of concentrating on my senses and condensing the essence of whatever that inspires me, there and then. The lighting is out of my control. Where I can position myself is often limited. And equipment is limited – old school or whatever you call it, I go out on street with a wide to standard prime on my camera, no zoom, no telephoto. I do not have an issue with photographers who take candid pictures of strangers using a long lens. But that is not what I do. And limiting yourself to a single focal length I think is a great exercise in both forcing yourself to look for an effective composition and also to naturally know how wide your angle of view is at any given point of time. Anyhow… that’s how I put my 20-year-old lens on my much younger digital camera and stepped out onto the wet street of Melbourne just after the sun had gone down beyond horizon.

(Please click image to view in Flickr. Click image on Flickr to view on full screen.)
dusk on the street

I love being out on the rainy day. Wet surfaces add more reflections, making the world look more interesting, and also brighter.
dusk on the street

dusk on the street

dusk on the street

dusk on the street

Like I was saying on Facebook earlier (and obviously this is inspired by the famous words by Cartier-Bresson)…

Just grab your camera, step onto the street. Surprise yourself. The rest will take care of itself.

Keep your eyes open, your senses wide open. When you feel something, be humble and face it. Don’t hide from it, don’t shy away from it. And when you did get the courage to actually point and click, you will be rewarded with satisfaction. Good luck to you, and see you on the street!

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zen’s studio

zen's studio, Melbourne

So I got this photo shoot job and flew over to Japan for it. Here’s one from that job…

 

Well, I wish I could say that! Sitting on the tatami mat, smelling the fresh grass that only comes from the fresh tatami, and sipping a cup of green tea, I was totally convinced that I was in Japan. But the reality was, it was only an hour’s drive from my home, here in Melbourne. This was a job for zen’s studio, a workshop who specialises in producing traditional Japanese rooms, screen windows and doors and other Japanese-themed interior pieces. I got a call from the owner, Hisao Zen, to photograph his works for his portfolio.
zen's studio, Melbourne

With a proper understanding of Japanese architectural styles, meaning and history of their details, he produces real Japanese rooms, as well as interior display works that make reference to such tradition.
zen's studio, Melbourne
zen's studio, Melbourne

We visited one of the homes Hisao’s built a room in. I was told that people gather for tea making (or ‘tea ceremony’ as we commonly know it) and Japanese flower arrangement in this Japanese tea room. It must be quite something to admire someone in traditional Japanese dress making tea in a corner of this room.

Zen’s Studio not only builds a complete room, but interior objects based on real Japanese design, upon request from their clients. The screen window corner feature, together with the flowers in the frame on the wall, add a touch of exotic mood to this Aussie home.
zen's studio, Melbourne

Back in the tea room, when the screen sliding doors were closed behind me, I was wrapped in the smell of tatami and felt like I was in a Japanese temple. And you could have it built inside without modifying the structure of your existing home! Seen below is another one that is temporarily set up in Hisao’s own home. As you can see, it is self-standing and not damaging the house itself. But once the ceiling and the sliding doors/windows are added, this is a proper Japanese room in your home.
zen's studio, Melbourne

zen's studio, Melbourne

This room was used at a Japan Festival that was held in Box Hill. Maybe you have seen it already and know how real this is. Zen’s Studio can custom-build a room or part-room for events and exhibitions that require the set up that is of real Japan. It can be built to any size or design, or even just a screen door, if that is all you need.

If you are interested, give Hisao a call, and let him know you read about his works here on my blog.

zen’s studio

hisazen@zensstudio.com.au

0434-067990

 

Oh, of course, please remember to drop me a line for the photography coverage of your event, too!

Soft rain

autumn leaves

My friend and I had a quick coffee in the balcony outside his kitchen, and got in my car. As we pulled into a carpark at the end of the dirt road, gentle drizzle started to come down. Covering the camera from rain with both hands making a roof under my neck, I enjoyed the walk in this beautiful place.

autumn leaves

autumn leaves

autumn leaves

autumn leaves

autumn leaves