I recently went to a photography exhibition at the Metropoliatan Museum of Photography while on holiday in Tokyo. I found it by chance while filling in time between some other activities, but it turned out to be a big source of inspiration. Sometimes I look at other photographer's work and think something along the lines of, 'why didn't I think of that?' 'why are my photos not quite that good?' My brain then goes into overdrive, ruminating, trying to concoct all sorts of ideas for good photos.
My experience at the exhibition was a little different though. The first gallery contained photos by Kawauchi Rinko. Some of these were fairly stunning. Others left me a little cold and sumewhat puzzled, in the same way that modern art sometimes can. I'm in no position to criticise anyone's work, but it is a matter of personal taste I suppose, and I left the hall feeling I hadn't quite got my moneys-worth.
The second hall contained the World Press Photo 2012 exhibition containing a whole host of photos ranging from a chilling portrait of a prositute to scenes of war. Some of these photos were greusome and difficicult to look at but almost without exception, they blew me away. What struck me was not just their beauty but the circumstances under which they must have been taken. Many had clearly been shot under phenomenally stressful and violent conditions in which there must also have been significant risk to the photographer. And yet they were beautifully framed, crisp and sharp and highly evocative with increadible subjects.
This got me thinking that the photographers in question probably didn't stand around setting up tripods, debating appertures and exposures, taking countless shots of the same subject under all manner of different settings. Presumably they have a a walk about setting which does for just about everything they might come across. Of course I might be wrong. I would be curious to know if anyone here has this kind of approach to photography, and if so what settings you tend to use?
As always, feel free to browse my work here or on my website hiblaze
Photo credits: Kim Deadman.