Tag Archives: street photography

Please Mind the Gap

“Please mind the gap.”

It’s an announcement every urban commuter is surely familiar with. This phrase is also what inspired photographer Weilun Chong to create his eponymous photo series, Please Mind the Gap.

After attending university in Singapore, the Malaysian photographer decided to stay, and it’s there, in his adoptive city where he now works full-time as an advertising art director. A few years back, a serendipitous accident that happened on his way to work was what led to the project. “I nearly lost my phone through the gap between the train and the station platform one day,” he recalls. “That was when I glanced through the gaps towards the next carriage and came up with the idea.”

“The best part about the project was that it was something I could work on during my daily commute,” he adds. “It wouldn’t take up time I can spend with my wife outside of work.” At the time, Chong’s wife was close to delivering their firstborn, and so, working on a project that could fulfill his creative thirst while not intruding into family time was a heaven-send.

A month after inspiration struck, Chong took the first picture in the series. Ever since then he’s continued taking photos in Singapore and Hong Kong.


这句话,大概常坐地铁和公交通勤的人们,丝毫不会陌生。而 Weilun Chong 创作的同名摄影系列,也正是受到这句话启发而来。

生于马来西亚,在新加坡念完大学的 Weilun,如今已是全职广告艺术总监。这个个人项目始于好几年前,契机来得很巧——“有一天,我的手机差点掉进地铁站台的空隙,然后我就扫到了一眼车厢的空隙,拍摄车厢间隙的想法就形成了:‘我可以在每天上下班上下班的路上做这件事,也可以陪我妻子一起。’”当时,Weilun 即将和他的妻子迎来第一个孩子,而这个摄影主题,恰好可以让他兼顾家庭与摄影创作,“这可能是命中注定的。”


“Sometimes I spot an interesting character or anticipate a possible interesting scene. When I do, I approach the subject fast and inconspicuously, waiting to take the shot at the right moment,” he says. “Other times, if I have a bit more time, I’ll just take random snaps.” In the platform gap, as the doors are closing, with everyone calm or in a rush, fatigued or full of excitement, a moment is captured in time.

After all, each time we step onto the train platform, we begin a new journey. In his photography, Chong celebrates this, rightfully recognizing each of his subjects as the protagonists of their own stories.

“有时候我会看到一个有趣的角色,或者可以预料到一个有趣的场景,我会迅速且不引人注意地接近它,然后我就等着拍下那个瞬间。还有一些时候,如果我有更多的时间,我就会随机去拍。” Weilun 说。站台间隙中,车厢闭合时,每个人或紧张或从容、或疲惫或振作的神态,从此定格。



Contributor: Chen Yuan

White Night

Chengdu-based photographer Feng Li has worked on a single project, White Night, for over a decade now. The series, quirky and surreal, is a visceral exploration of the odd moments between and behind those we most often pay attention to. With no plans to stop or start on another, he says the series will only come to an end if he loses interest in taking pictures altogether.

Though in his early days he experimented with black-and-white and film photography, he now works primarily with a Sony digital camera and a mounted flash. Capturing everything in flash is a purposeful decision, often making it difficult to distinguish the time of day, a hallmark of the series.

来自成都的摄影师冯立,已经在单个摄影项目《白夜》(White Night)上进行创作逾 10 年了。这个系列离奇而超现实,它是对那些我们最会关注的人之间和其背后的古怪时刻的一种本能探索。由于还未计划停止或开始另一个摄影项目,冯立说,只有当他对拍照完全失去兴趣时,这个系列才会结束。


In an old article, the interviewer attempted to draw a comparison between Feng’s photography and his original field of study – Chinese medicine and acupuncture – writing, “It’s as though he approaches portrait photography as clinical cases. When the bulb’s warning light flashes, he’s able to accurately pinpoint the illness’s acupuncture point.” When I asked Feng, however, if he thought his previous profession influenced his artistic work, he replied that he thought the period had at most an indirect connection.

In such a response, one sees ties to the fact that even within the realm of artistic photography, he does not seem to care for either comparisons or a discussion of influences. White Night began when he was taking photos for his job as a photographer with the Chengdu propaganda department; that evening, he recalls, was particularly foggy, and the fog and the lights wrapped themselves around each other in surreal ways which reminded him of scenes from films by influential directors such as Angelopolous or Tarkovski. When I brought up this story, however, with a shrug, he replies, “It happens those are a few of what amount to the few films I’ve seen.” When I asked about photographers he’s named in the past as being of interest – Diane Arbus, William Eggleston, Nobuyoshi Araki, Han Lei – he said he had never used his own photographs to draw any comparisons to those of others, and that he rarely looks at photo books himself.


即使在摄影领域,冯立似乎也不太爱比较或讨论影响的作用。《白夜》这个系列,开始于他在成都市宣传部门当摄影师的时候。在他记忆里的那个夜晚尤其模糊,蒸腾的雾气和朦胧的灯光,以超现实的方式把夜包裹,这让冯立想起了安杰洛波卢斯(Angelopolous)或塔尔科夫斯基(Tarkovski)等导演的电影场景。然而,当我提起这些的时候,他却淡然地答道:“碰巧这些只是我看过的为数不多的几部电影中的一部分。”当我问及他曾提起过感兴趣的摄影师,诸如黛安娜·阿伯斯(Diane Arbus)、威廉·埃格尔斯顿(William Eggleston)、荒木经惟和韩磊时,他说他从来没有用自己的照片来和这些人作比较,他自己也很少看影集。

It is difficult even to say that Feng considers himself an artist. Instead, he says, “I think of myself as a photographer, but use an artist’s style in order to think.” He has not tried other artistic mediums, and expresses no desire to do so. His primary inspiration, he says, is life, and his sole aim seems to be to approach life as a kind of unreal, storied fabric; he looks for unreal moments that to him ultimately comprise our chaotic reality. Nor does he spend his time fastidiously choosing the photos he likes best. There aren’t any unpublished White Nights photos, he says; basically anytime he takes a picture, he releases it online. Asked whether he minds that some have evaluated his work as ugly and amateurish, he said he’s never minded others’ experiences, and that ugly and amateurish are good evaluations as far as he’s concerned. Indeed, when I asked him to talk about composition and aesthetic, he claimed his photos have neither.




What, then, does Feng Li look for when he is photographing? Tellingly, when I asked him to describe a moment he’d been unable to capture, he said he was unable to describe it – “just like the moments I captured.” He told another interviewer that a good photo prevents you from understanding what happened and that it is filled with unknown, mystery, and uncertainty. I tried to go a step farther and ask what he thought a successful photo is, only to have him tell me that there is no such thing as a successful photograph – “just difficult-to-put-to-words photographs, no-way-to-use-writing photographs, or no-need-to-use-writing-to-describe photographs.” In terms of subjects, he says he can only run into them, that they cannot be sought out.

那么,冯立在摄影时在寻找什么呢?我请他描述一个他无法捕捉到的瞬间,但他却说这无法描述──“就像那些拍到的瞬间一样。” 他说,“一张好照片,它阻止了你理解发生的事情。它充满了未知、神秘和不确定的因素。”


But despite his reticence to discuss influence, style, form, aesthetic, Feng Li has in fact expressed a pretty clear worldview throughout interviews and in his own artist’s statement: the world is problematic and in a state essentially of primeval chaos, such that a distinction between the real and the unreal is difficult to achieve. The moments he seize tell a story of a dangerous world, “reality’s others face,” an underbelly of existence that essentially is our reality, only too many people are too afraid to look directly at it. The only way to live, in Feng Li’s mind, is to do one’s utmost to understand the reality of existence through experiencing the world around oneself, the value of which cannot be replaced by others’ stories and experiences.


For all that, though, he does not claim to understand reality; far from it. When previously asked to define his works in a few words, he responded he had finally reduced it to one: “Why?”

He calls eternity a question mark and says that he is still unable to understand the world, in the same way that he can’t express in words what his photographs might mean. This is a particular paradox: Feng thinks it of utmost importance to understand the chaotic world but rejects attempts to define or contextualize the photographs that attempt to capture that chaos. But paradoxes by nature wrap in on themselves: so perhaps the paradoxical nature of Feng Li’s mission – finding the unreal cracks that make our reality so real – made further inconsistency inevitable, and perhaps ultimately that is this artist’s point.



Website: fengli-photo.com
Instagram: @fenglee313


Contributor: Kiril Bolotnikov

网站: fengli-photo.com
Instagram: @fenglee313


供稿人: Kiril Bolotnikov

Losing Face

Korean-American photographer Argus Paul Estabrook believes that art should contribute to a greater understanding of our surrounding world, and he, as a photographer, has the responsibility to help present new perspectives and provoke critical thinking. While he’s best known for his street photography, Estabrook considers his work to be more a form of personal documentary rather than photojournalism. “Everyone who shoots on the street has a relationship with it,” he tells us. “They know what it means to be on a journey, searching for something yet not knowing what that might be.”

美籍韩裔摄影师 Argus Paul Estabrook 认为,艺术应该有助于我们去更加了解这个世界。而他作为一名摄影师,肩负着提出新观点和批判思维的责任。 虽然他以街头摄影闻名,但 Estabrook 认为自己的作品更像是个人观点的纪录,而非单纯纪录外在事件的新闻摄影。 “每个在街上拍照的人都与‘街头’有着特殊的连结关系。”他告诉我们, “他们知道当带着相机上街头,这段旅程代表的真正意义为何。是在路上寻找一些东西,即使还不知道那些东西是什么。”

His photo series, Losing Face, offers a candid look inside the Seoul protests that arose from the revelation of former South Korean President Park Geun-hye’s scandal. Processed entirely in black and white, the powerful series uses slow shutter speeds and a bright flash to dramatic effect. Last year, the powerful series went on to win the prestigious Magnum Photography Award as well as the LensCulture Street Photography Awards.

他的作品《Losing Face》(《丢脸》) ,纪录了发生在韩国首尔街上,因前总统朴槿惠的丑闻而起的抗议活动,他的摄影为此事件提供一个坦率的视角。照片完全采用黑白处理,使用低快门速度和明亮的闪光灯拍摄,以达成极具戏剧张力的视觉效果。 2017年,此系列作品为 Estabrook 赢得了著名的玛格南摄影奖和 LensCulture 街头摄影奖。

“When the street leads me to an experience like the Seoul protests, I feel like my job is to zero in on the energy and then conceptualize it in a way that enables it to be reintroduced back into the world,” Estabrook explains of his process. “It’s like a creative circuit. I just try to keep my mind open, so whenever a moment moves me, I’m able to ‘describe’ it with my photography.”

“当我被街头带着去体验像这次首尔的抗议活动时,我觉得我的工作是将注意力全部集中在当场释放出的能量上,然后捕捉并概念化这样的能量,再以一个能重新被导入世界的方式呈现出来。” Estabrook 这样解释他的创作过程。“这是一个创作循环的回圈。我尽量让自己的心思保持开放,所以每当有一个瞬间感动到我,我就能用我的照片去把那一瞬间 ‘描述’ 出来。”

Website: arguspaul.com
Instagram: @arguspaul


Contributor: Shanshan Chen

网站: arguspaul.com
Instagram: @arguspaul


供稿人: Shanshan Chen

Hefei Through the Lens of Liu Tao

Liu Tao is a Chinese photographer from Hefei, Anhui Province. With his keen sense of humor and an insider’s perspective of the city, Liu has been given the nickname “wild street photography master.” Despite the extravagant title, Liu actually works as a water meter inspector for the public utility services. The contrast between his day job and his street photography has made Liu a subject of interest in the media in the past few years. However, Liu doesn’t see any conflict between these two parts of his life. His job for the public utility services gives him a set schedule, allowing him the freedom to go out and consistently take photographs throughout the year. Now, with seven years of street photography experience under his belt, Liu has captured the everyday lives of many of Hefei’s residents and has documented almost every emotion on the human spectrum along the way.



Liu’s favorite place to shoot is one particular street in Hefei, an old neighborhood bustling with life. Whenever he has a day off, he’ll take his camera there, often spending the entire day shooting. Initially, when he first started taking photos here, some of the residents w0uld react in a disapproving or standoffish manner. Liu says, “Two years ago at the door of the food market, I would come across a bulky guy selling peaches every day, and we would exchange glances. He thought I was from the city… Last year, at the intersection, we met again and he was selling sugar cane, and he thought I lived nearby. I told him I was just a photographer. This year, we crossed paths again at night, at the entrance of an alleyway where he was selling watermelons. As soon as he saw me, he yelled, ‘What are you up to! Why do I see you everywhere! Don’t mess around with me!’ His yelling startled all of the other streetside vendors around us.” Liu says that only when a photographer becomes a familiar face in the area will people open up to being photographed.




Over the years, Liu has observed both the familiar sights of the old streets as well as the changes in both the city and its residents. He shares that he doesn’t go to commercial or business districts, disinterested in photographing skyscrapers. He says, “Those places don’t have the atmosphere of daily life.” As an ardent observer, Liu remains fascinated by the daily patterns of people on Hefei’s old streets. But what truly captivates his interest are the stories behind each and every person.



Taking photographs in the same area for such a long time, Liu will often run into the same people again and again. This has led to no shortage of awkward moments. One time, a photo that he took of the female butcher shop owner taking a selfie with her legs kicked up on the table became the headlining photo of a local newspaper. He confesses that now, every time he passes by the butcher shop, both he and the owner will avoid making eye contact with each another. “It’s way too awkward,” he says.


Liu always finds interesting perspectives to shoot from. He may stay in the same spot for a few hours – even a few days – waiting for the perfect moment to present itself. Sharing the story behind the above photo, he says, “When I shot this, I saw that there were people coming to take photos in front of these flowers, while these aunties were doing exercises next to them. The aunties just happened to be bowing down while the woman posed in front of the flowers, so I captured that moment.” Liu’s street photography style draws from his own influences as well. He’s a lover of the films of Stephen Chow, and he never gets tired of their sense of humor and slapstick moments. What motivates Liu to keep exploring and shooting are coming across these humorous, interesting moments within the mundanity of daily life.


Now, as a father, Liu spends a lot of time photographing his daughter instead of Hefei’s old streets. When he was offered an opportunity to become a full-time photographer, he declined, choosing instead to humbly continue his work inspecting water meters. For Liu, photography was never about advancing his position or chasing fame and fortune – he just wanted to experience more of what life was about, to fully live life and live it well.


Instagram: @Grinch0748
Weibo: ~/Grinch1982


Contributor: Chen Yuan
Images Courtesy of Liu Tao

Instagram: @Grinch0748


供稿人: Chen Yuan

The Chaos of Hong Kong

Duran Levinson is a filmmaker originally from Cape Town, South Africa. Aside from filmmaking, he’s an avid globetrotter and photographer whose travels have taken him throughout Asia. He admits the massive metropolises of Asia fascinate him way more than his hometown. Out of his travels, one of his favorite locations to capture is Hong Kong, a place he frequently visits every year for weeks at a time.

Duran Levinson是一名来自南非开普敦的影片制作人,但在拍摄影片之外的时间,他也喜欢带着他的相机去四处拍照。除了他的家乡南非之外,他更情迷亚洲的城市,香港就是其中一个他特别钟情的拍摄地点。Duran每年会去香港旅行几次,每次待上半个月左右的时间。

“The Kowloon side of Hong Kong appeals to me the most because of the chaos and beauty,” Levinson fondly describes. “I love that it’s so messy, so busy, and so cluttered. For photography I would say it is one of the most interesting places in the world I have ever photographed in.”


Beyond the chaotic beauty of Hong Kong, Levinson’s love of the city can also be attributed to the people he’s met there. “I have so many great friends in Hong Kong. I always enjoy spending time there working and shooting with new and old friends. I believe people in Hong Kong are more exposed to creativity than a lot of other Asians, and this can help with planning and organizing shoots. I find that my friends in Hong Kong are always down for adventure and spontaneous photo missions.” See more of Hong Kong through his eyes below.


Instagram: @duranite


Contributor: Ye Zi



供稿人: Ye Zi

Kowloon Wasted Youth

Kowloon Wasted Youth is a photography series by Andreas Demeter, a German photographer, DJ, music producer, and art director currently based in Hong Kong. Shot on 35mm analog film without the use of any postproduction, the series is a visual diary of moments from the artist’s life, shot between 2016 and 2017.

Andreas Demeter是来自德国的一名摄影师、DJ、音乐制作人和艺术总监,现居香港。在2016年至2017年期间,他用35mm胶片拍摄了《Kowloon Wasted Youth》系列,作为一个记录生活的视觉日记,所有照片都没有经过任何后期编辑。

Demeter says about the series, “I wanted to give a glimpse into the odd beauty, seductive charm and harsh contrasts below the shiny surface of this hopelessly overpopulated post-colonial melting pot of Eastern and Western culture that likes to dub itself ‘Asia’s World City’ – a term that is being scoffed at by the local youth of today in a time of weltschmerz and political uncertainty, grasping for freedom and autonomy, while being forced to give in to the slow and sneaky erosion of hypercapitalism.”


For Demeter, Kowloon encompasses a more authentic side of Hong Kong, in contrast to the shiny skyscrapers and sterilized streets of Hong Kong Island. Through his series, he hopes to capture a side of Hong Kong’s youth culture that is “a lot more local, charismatic, charming, and authentic.”


Instagram: @dredogue


Contributor: George Zhi Zhao

Instagram: @dredogue


供稿人: George Zhi Zhao


Cody Ellingham is a designer and art director based in Tokyo, Japan. After moving to Tokyo in 2012, he became mesmerized by “the urban landscape and neon fantasies of the world’s first cyberpunk city.” His multimedia project DERIVE uses reflection and unique perspectives to explore his experience of the metropolis.

Cody Ellingham是居住在日本东京的设计师和艺术总监。 2012年搬到东京后,他被“世界第一个赛博朋克(cyberpunk)城市的霓虹灯夜景”迷住了。他的多媒体项目——《DERIVE》,使用反射和独特的视角探索着他在这个大都市的生活。

Website: cbje.jp
Facebook: ~/derive.tokyo
Instagram: @cbje_tokyo


Contributor: George Zhi Zhao

网站: cbje.jp
脸书: ~/derive.tokyo
Instagram: @cbje_tokyo


Contributor: George Zhi Zhao

Tokyo Compression

Tokyo Compression 12 (2010)

German-born artist and photographer Michael Wolf started his career as a photojournalist in 1994. After spending nearly a decade working in Hong Kong for the German magazine Stern, a lack of interest in many of his assignments and a lack of time for his personal projects led him to pursue fine art photography full-time in 2003. In 2004, he won first prize in the World Press Photo competition’s Contemporary Issues category for his compelling photo series China: Factory of the World where he captured workers in different types of factories. The award would be the first of many as his body of work continued to evolve and grow.

ドイツ出身アーチスト兼写真家のMichael Wolf は、1994年にフォトジャーナリストとしてそのキャリアを歩み始めました。香港に在住中の10年近くをドイツ系雑誌・Sternのジャーナリストとして過ごす間は、大半の職務に興味を見出せないまま、自分のやりたいプロジェクトが行えない日々を過ごす時期が続きました。そのような状況の中、2003年にプロの美術写真家に転向し、翌2004年には世界報道写真展の現代社会部門にて、様々な工場で働く労働者達の姿を捉えた作品集のChina: Factory of the World で初の賞を獲得しました。この賞はその後の作品の進化と成長や、多くの受賞作を生むきっかけになったのです。

Tokyo Compression 54 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 57 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 35 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 31 (2010)

In the years since, he’s become a significant name in the contemporary art scene, developing an exceptional body of work around life in the cities of China, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Chicago and Paris. His photographs are a profound embodiment of urban life, from Bastard Chairs and 100×100 to Transparent City and Real Fake Art among other numerous projects. Most of Wolf’s images display a unique internal look into peoples’ lives within both the suburbs and bustling centers of megacities. Through his photography, Wolf’s intent is to capture and present his vision of the dynamics of city life as well as his perspective on the turbulent nature of the urban environments. Tokyo Compression is one of those stark manifestations.

それ以来、当人は現代のアートシーンで重要な役割を担う存在となり、中国の他、香港、東京、シカゴ、パリなどの都市生活を描く素晴らしい作品を制作してきました。数多くの作品の中でも特にBastard Chairs100×100Transparent CityReal Fake Art は、都市生活の鋭い洞察が具体的に表されています。本人が想像するイメージの大半では、大都市の目まぐるしく動く中心部や、近郊の人々の生活を捉えた独特な眼差しが映し出されています。カメラのレンズを通して都市生活の原動力となるビジョン、そして都市という渦巻く環境を彼なりの視点で捉えて描こうとしたのです。その視点は、Tokyo Compressionプロジェクトに最もよく表されています。

Tokyo Compression 125 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 126 (2010)

First presented in 2010 as a book, Tokyo Compression is a photo series that consists of candid portraits of Japanese people inside the jam-packed Tokyo subway trains, a stream of nameless faces pressed up against a window wet with condensation. Creating a sense of hardship, the images depict an urban hell, a mental compression of sadness and despair, madness and anxiety.

2010年にまず単行本として発表されたTokyo Compressionは、東京の地下鉄の満員電車内でお互いが押し合いながらも汗まみれとなり、窓に押し付けられて何とも言えない表情が映し出された、日本人のありのままの姿を集めた作品集です。人々の苦労を映し出すイメージは、都市の苦しみ、悲しみに溢れた精神的な圧迫感、そして絶望、狂気、不安な様子が表されています。

Tokyo Compression 18 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 75 (2010)

Wolf’s photography has shown the adaptability of human spirit against adversity in one of the most ultimate urban environments: the city’s underground. Capturing the everyday commuter life in Tokyo’s subway, Wolf has managed to present the physical and mental reduction of privacy and space in the daily routine, imbued with a feeling of dismal, overwhelming and total vulnerability to the city.


Tokyo Compression 55 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 77 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 80 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 52 (2010)

In 2009, Wolf’s Tokyo Compression series won first prize in the World Press Photo Award’s Daily Life category. Now interchangeably living and working in Hong Kong and Paris, Michael Wolf continues to pursue his personal projects where he explores and reveals an inward world of big cities through his lens.

このTokyo Compressionシリーズは、2009年世界報道写真展の日常生活部門で最優秀賞を獲得しました。現在当人は、香港とパリを仕事と生活の拠点として活動し、レンズを通して大都市の奥深くを追いかけて表現する、独自のプロジェクトを手掛け続けています。

Tokyo Compression 17 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 66 (2010)
Tokyo Compression 123 (2010)

Micheal Wolf’s solo exhibition Hong Kong – Informal Solutions is now on display at the M97 Gallery in Shanghai. The new exhibit features photographs, video loops, and artifacts collected from the back alleys of Hong Kong.

上海のM97画廊では個展のHong Kong – Informal Solutionsが開催されています。新作が披露されているこの展覧会では、写真、動画ループ、香港の裏通りで見つかった工芸品が展示されています。

Facebook: ~/michael-wolf


Contributor: Anastasia Masalova
Images Courtesy of Michael Wolf & M97 Shanghai

Facebook: ~/michael-wolf


寄稿人: Anastasia Masalova
Images Courtesy of Michael Wolf & M97 Shanghai

On the Road with Kenzo Ejiri

Kenzo Ejiri is a Japanese-Australian photographer, graphic designer and architect. He is currently a designer by profession, but his passion for photography has led him to become the award-winning photographer he is today. In 2015, Kenzo’s portrait entitled My Father and Mother, part of the series Tokyo Revisited, was included in the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize at London’s National Portrait Gallery, one of the country’s high-profile photography prizes. He recently spoke with us about his prolific career as a photographer.

ケンゾー・エジリ氏は、日系オーストラリア人の写真家であり、グラフィックデザイナーであり、 建築家でもあります。多文化の家庭で育ったエジリ氏の受け持つ分野も多様です。エジリ氏の職 業はデザイナーであり、娯楽として行う写真撮影は、受賞歴があります。2015 年、Tokyo Revisited シリーズの一部であるエジリ氏の肖像写真「My Father and Mother」は、ロンドンナシ ョナルポートレートギャラリーのイギリス有数の写真賞である、テイラー・ウェッシング・ポー トレート写真賞(Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize)受賞作品の一つとなりました。最近、写真家としての豊富なキャリアについて、エジリ氏に話してもらいました。

Neocha: You work across several different disciplines, from web and application design to photography and architecture. How did you get started with these different disciplines along the way?

Kenzo: I think it’s down to me being a “grass is greener” kind of person, meaning I have a short attention span. I like to continuously learn new things without ever really knowing what I want to be in the long run. I have a good feeling that I will always be like this. I don’t mind bouncing between different disciplines. I knew from relatively early on that I wanted to be doing something design related or just something in the creative field. So while I was in university, I thought that I would choose a subject which would allow flexibility, something in creativity, design, or architecture. I knew that if I trained as an architect, I would be able to go into other creative fields if I wanted to change my mind. It also helps that both my parents are architects.

Neocha: あなたの作品は、ウェブ・アプリケーションのデザイン、写真、そして建築というように、いくつかの分野にわたっています。異なる分野を習得した経緯をお聞かせください?

Kenzo: それは、自分自身に理由があります。私は、「他人のものが何でもよく見える」と思うタイプの人間であり、注意力が持続する期間が短いのです。長続きするかどうかあまりわからずに新しいことを学び続けることが好きです。新しいことを絶え間なく学ぶことは、心地よいことです。キ ャリアの比較的初期から、デザイン的なことや、単に創造的なことをしたくなるだろうと思って おり、大学では創造やデザインでかなり柔軟になれる建築を選ぶだろうと考えてはいましたが、 異なる分野をあれこれと試すことを厭いません。建築家としての訓練を受ければ、気が変わると 他のクリエイティブな分野に転向するだろうということは、わかっていました。また、両親が建 築家であったことも助かりました。

Neocha: How do you describe the importance of all those disciplines for you as an artist? For example, how do you differentiate what you do for the sake of art and what you do toward developing your career?

Kenzo: To be honest, I like to keep them separate. I’ve never really focused on photography as a career role because I didn’t want to taint it or rely on it. As soon as there’s pressure or a goal with photography, it can be easy to start to not enjoy it, so I’ve always kept it as my hobby that I can resort to and enjoy. I design for my career and take photos for enjoyment or as you said for “the sake of art”.

Neocha: 芸術家として、これら全ての分野の重要性について述べていただけますか?例えば、芸術のための仕事と、どちらかというとキャリアのための仕事をどう区別しますか?

Kenzo: 率直に言うと、自分はそれぞれを別々のことにしておく方です。写真撮影に染まることや、そ れを頼ることはしたくはないので、職業の役割として写真撮影に集中したことは全くありませ ん。写真撮影は、プレッシャーや目標ができるとすぐに楽しいものではなくなってしまうことで しょう。このため、写真は常に趣味の一つとして楽しんでいます。したがって、デザインはキャ リアのために行い、写真は楽しみのため、先ほどおっしゃった「芸術のため」に撮影していま す。

Neocha: You like traveling – what does the term “on the road” mean to you?

Kenzo: On the road to me means a good thing. It means travelling without really knowing or minding where you’ll end up. I did this around China and through Tibet, hitchhiking and going wherever the car, bus, bike would go.

I take pictures of places that I get inspired by, Tokyo definitely has a certain appeal that come across well in photos. A lot of it is down to the simple fact that I travel there every year to see family. If I travel anywhere, I’ll probably be taking pictures. If I’ve never been somewhere before that’s when I take the most pictures, like a true tourist.

Neocha: 旅行がお好きですよね。「旅に出る」とはあなたにどのような意味があるのでしょうか?

Kenzo: 旅に出ることは、良いことです。つまり、目的地を把握したり考えたりせずに、旅行をするこ とです。中国のあちこちやチベットの至るところでヒッチハイクや車、バス、自転車で行き先を 気にせずに、旅行をしました。

インスピレーションを受けた場所で写真を撮ります。東京は、写真を上手く撮れるような特定の 魅力があることは確かです。こうしたことの多くは、ただ私が毎年家族に会うために東京を訪れ るという単純なことが理由です。どこへでも旅行をするとしても、きっと写真を撮っているでしょう。初めて訪れる場所にいたとしても、その時は、まさしく旅行者のようにほとんどの写真を 撮影するでしょう。

Neocha: How people usually react to your camera in a strange place?

Kenzo: I get the same reaction anywhere I take photos. I try not to invade people’s space or privacy, but it’s all relative to the person you’re taking a picture of. So I wouldn’t say there’s any difference. Of course, the more touristy a city or place is, the harder it is to take photos. I guess all the locals are kind of tired of having their photo taken. This was definitely the case in Morocco. Most of the time wherever I take photos I can get away with taking the photo by giving them a big smile. But it doesn’t work every time.

Neocha: 変な場所であなたのカメラを向けられる人達は、普通どう反応しますか?

Kenzo: どこで写真を撮る時も、反応は同じです。他の人達の心理的縄張りやプライバシーに踏み込も うとはしませんが、反応は全て被写体となる人によるので、反応が違うとは言えないと思いま す。もちろん、街や場所が観光地化されるほど、地元の人達は皆、写真を撮られることに少々う んざりしていると思うので、写真を撮るのは難しくなります。疑いなく、モロッコは、そういう ところでした。どこで撮影しても、ほとんどの場合、笑顔をすれば写真をただで撮らせてもらう ことはできますが、毎回それが可能ではありません。

Neocha: What’s your most memorable experience of confrontation between you and your subjects?

Kenzo: The most confrontational time was when I was taking pictures of the London riots that took place in the summer of 2011. I remember being surrounded, and I managed to talk my way out of a situation by deleting a lot of my photos, as people were worried I would report them to the police. I still managed to get some good shots, but I was a lot younger and more naive then.

Neocha: あなたと被写体の間での最も記憶に残っている対立は何でしたか?

Kenzo: 最も対立したのは、2011 年夏に起きたロンドンの暴動を撮影していた時でした。人々は警察に 通報されることを懸念しており、私は囲まれ、多くの写真を削除して、何とか話してその場を逃 れたことを覚えています。それでも、良く撮れた写真を何枚か得ることはできましたが、その 頃、私は今よりずっと若くナイーブでした。

Neocha: Have you ever felt in-between cultures and how do you handle it? How do you interpret this feeling in your work?

Kenzo: I always feel in-between cultures but I’ve never seen it as a bad thing. I’m half Australian and half Japanese, and the way I see it is I’m getting the best of both worlds and perspectives. It’s a key thing in my photography, I like to take pictures of things that are very different to what I’m used to and I try to make it interesting with little tricks. The tricks could be with lighting, or where I put my subjects. All in all, what I’m technically doing with my photos is reflecting what I am already seeing – which is something different. I try to avoid taking the photo that everyone else is taking or has taken. That’s always something that I’ve done and my friends encourages me and tells me I have to be different. Sometimes that’s a good thing, sometimes it’s a bad thing.

Neocha: 異文化の間にいると感じたことはありますか?また、そうしたことをどう扱いますか?仕事で そのような感覚をどう捉えますか?

Kenzo: 文化の間にいるということは、常に感じていますが、それをネガティブにとらえたことは一切 ありません。私は半分オーストラリア人で半分日本人であるので、そうした生き方を常にしてき ました。しかし、双方の世界または視点の最も良いところを持っているという見方をしていま す。それは、私の写真撮影における重要な点です。これまで慣れ親しんだこととかなり異なる物 の撮影をすることが好きで、ちょっとしたトリックを使い面白く見えるように撮るのです。その トリックとは、光や被写体の置き方かもしれません。技術的に言えば、私が写真で行っている全 ては、どこか他とは異なった自分が既に見ていることを反映させることです。他の誰もが撮影し ている写真や、既に撮影した写真の撮影は避けようとします。これは、私がこれまで行ってきた ことであり、友達が指摘することです。他と違うように撮影しなければならないのです。それは 時により良いことであったり、悪いことであったりします。


Contributor: Shanshan Chen


寄稿者: Shanshan Chen

A Short Tour of Manila

In her photography, Catherine Ramos (aka Kleng Ramos) likes to capture the life, charm, energy and the colors of the everyday scenarios that she encounters in the streets of the Philippines, or wherever she goes to travel. She first started shooting in high school with a simple point and shoot digital camera, and ever since then she gets a thrill in capturing things that are rarely seen.

Sa kanyang potograpya, gusto ni Catherine Ramos (na kilala rin bilang Kleng Ramos) na kumuha ng larawan ng buhay, alindog, enerhiya at  mga kulay ng araw-araw na senaryo na nakakasalubong niya sa mga lansangan ng Pilipinas, o saan man siya maglakbay. Nagsimula siyang kumuha ng larawan noong siya ay nasa mataas na paaralan na may simple point at shoot digital camera, at simula noon ay nakakuha siya ng kagalakan sa pagkuha ng larawan ng mga bagay na pambihirang makita.

When asked about Manila, her home city, Catherine tells us, “What I like the most in this city is that there’s always something going on here. This city is busy, yet so lively.” For her, there are always new hang-out places, dining and drinking places pop up constantly, and there never seem to be a shortage of events. The locals in Manila also really know how to have fun and be hospitable.

Nang tanungin siya tungkol sa Maynila na kanyang tahanang lungsod, ikinuwento sa amin ni Catherine na, “Ang pinakagusto ko sa lungsod na ito ay laging mayroong kakaiba dito. Ang lungsod na ito ay abala ngunit buhay na buhay.” Para sa kanya, laging maraming lugar na pasyalan, kainan at inumang lugar na patuloy na lumalabas, at waring hindi kailanman nauubusan ng mga pagdiriwang. Alam din ng mga tao sa Maynila kung paano magsaya at maging magiliw sa panauhin.

Catherine comes from San Juan City, Metro Manila. This is the city that she loves the most and is most familiar with. This part of Manila offers many little surprises to visitors, from cool neighborhood street art to delicious food served in its small local restaurants. While not exactly a pedestrian city, she tells us Manila is rapidly making improvements to make the city more walkable and safer.

Si Catherine ay nagmula sa Lungsod ng San Juan, Kalakhang Maynila. Ito ang lungsod na pinaka gustong-gusto niya at pinaka pamilyar sa kanya. Ang bahagi ng Maynilang ito ay nag-aalok ng maraming maliliit na sorpresa sa mga bisita mula sa magagandang sining sa kalsada ng lugar hanggang sa masasarap na inihahaing pagkain sa maliliit na lokal na restawran dito. Habang hindi pa eksaktong lungsod ng mga taong naglalakad, sinabi niya na mabilis na nagkakaroon ng mga pagbabago ang Maynila para malakaran nang ligtas ang lungsod.

“If you are into thrift shops or you would like to shop for vintage and artsy stuff,” Catherine tells us, “you can go to Cubao X, which is located in Cubao-Quezon City, or the Future Market in Manila.” If you want to check it out, Catherine advises that Future Market only happens on Saturdays. At the thrift stores in Cubao X, you can find used clothing, shoes, vintage memorabilias, old cameras, watches, furnitures, vinyl records, books and much more.

“Kung ikaw ay mahilig mamili sa mga ukay-ukay o gusto mong mamili ng antigo at masining na kagamitan,” sinabi sa amin ni Catherine na, “maaari kang magpunta sa Cubao X, na matatagpuan sa Cubao-Lungsod ng Quezon, o sa Future Market sa Maynila.” Kung gusto mong mamili, ipinapayo ni Catherine na ang Future Market  ay nagaganap lamang tuwing Sabado. Sa mga ukay-ukay sa Cubao X, makikita mo ang mga nagamit nang kasuotan, sapatos, antigong mga palamuti, lumang kamera, relo, muwebles, vinyl records, aklat at marami pang iba.

If you want to eat and have a good variety of choices, Catherine recommends that you try the Greenfield Weekend Market on Shaw Boulevard in Mandaluyong City. “A lot of food stalls are set up there during the weekends. Apart from that, artwork and vintage finds could also be bought there,” she says. Sometimes, it is possible to catch some musical performances from local bands while enjoying your food at this park.

Kung gusto mong kumain at magkaroon ng maraming pagpipilian, inirerekomenda ni Catherine na subukan mo ang Greenfield Weekend Market sa Shaw Boulevard sa Lungsod ng Mandaluyong. “Maraming puwesto ng pagkain doon tuwing huling linggo. Bukod doon, mabibili rin ang mga gawang-sining at antigo,” kuwento niya. Minsan, maaaring makakita ng ilang musikang pagtatanghal mula sa mga lokal na banda habang kumakain sa parkeng ito.

“If you would like to watch local bands, be it mainstream or indie,” Catherine says, “I suggest that you go to Saguijo and B-Side which are located in Makati City, or Route 196 which is located in Quezon City.” For contemporary art, Catherine highly recommends the Pinto Art Museum in Antipolo City, Rizal. While it is actually just outside of Manila, the museum is a very famous destination for art enthusiasts.

“Kung gusto mong manood ng mga lokal na banda, mapa- mainstream o indie,” kuwento ni Catherine, “Iminumungkahi ko na magpunta ka sa Saguijo at B-Side na matatagpuan sa Lungsod ng Makati, o Route 196 na matatagpuan sa Lungsod ng Quezon.”Para sa mga napapanahong sining, higit na inirerekomenda ni Catherine ang Pinto Art Museum sa Lungsod ng Antipolo sa Rizal. Habang sa katunayan, ito ay nasa labas ng Maynila, ang museo ay napakasikat na destinasyon para sa mga tagahanga ng sining.

“Nowadays,” Catherine says, “people here in Manila are starting to favor more local cafes, even though famous coffee chains could be found in almost every street – especially around the busy areas of Manila.” To try the local brews, she recommends checking out Local Edition, Yardstick and Commune, which are located in Makati City.

“Sa kasalukuyan,” kuwento ni Catherine, “ang mga tao dito sa Maynila ay nagsisimulang higit na paboran ang mga lokal na kapehan, kahit na ang mga kilalang tindahan ng kape ay matatagpuan sa halos lahat ng kalsada– lalo na sa buong abalang lugar ng Maynila.” Para subukan ang lokal na paggawa ng kape, inirekomenda niya na magpunta sa Local Edition, Yardstick at Commune, na matatagpuan sa Lungsod ng Makati.

As a street photographer, Ramos has come across a lot of different encounters while out shooting. There was one time when she approached a homeless woman to ask if she could take a portrait of her. “Despite the hardships that the woman obviously had been through, I was amazed how excited and happy she was when I asked her to be photographed,” Catherine says, “That encounter made me realize a lot of things and I can say that it was the most memorable experience I had so far while shooting the streets of Manila.”

Bilang litratista ng lansangan, naranasan ni Ramos ang maraming iba’t ibang hamon habang kumukuha ng larawan. Isang beses nang lumapit siya sa babaeng walang tahanan para hilingin kung maaari siyang makakuha ng kanyang litrato. “Sa kabila ng kahirapan na halatang pinagdaraanan ng babae, humanga ako kung gaano siya kasabik at kasaya nang hilingin ko na kunan siya ng litrato,” kuwento ni Catherine, “Ang karanasang iyon ay nagmulat sa akin sa maraming bagay at masasabi ko na ito ang pinaka hindi malilimutang karanasan na mayroon ako habang kumukuha ng larawan sa mga lansangan ng Maynila.”

Website: triplekleng.blogspot.com
VSCO Gridvsco.co/klengramos


Contributor: Leon Yan
Photographer: Kleng Ramos

Website: triplekleng.blogspot.com
VSCO Grid: vsco.co/klengramos


Kontribyutor: Leon Yan
Litratista: Kleng Ramos