Just lately I’ve had the urge to pick up my old Pentax film camera, when the summer months arrive it seems to be the perfect time to use it. The camera really is a brilliant piece of equipment and I’ve invested quite a lot of money in making sure the light seals were properly fitted and not worn, and everything was clean mechanically inside. It pays to make sure the older equipment is running smoothly, as the benefits can be extremely noticeable when it comes to film. The graining just pops out in the final shots and the amount of character through the natural lighting also adds to each shooting situation. You may remember me mentioning a book before titled ‘in praise of shadows’ by Junichiro Tanizaki, an essay on aesthetics, describing the collision between the shadows of traditional Japanese interiors and the dazzling light of the modern age. In a lot of ways when I take pictures now I’m looking for the natural shadows and I’m trying to depict what the eye would see, it’s not that easy to get it just right, but when you do there’s no better feeling.
Someone that I was inspired by this week, and is possibly the main reason why I decided to pick my film camera back up, was Japanese photographer Isao Hashinoki. He has a brilliant touch with the camera and all of his shots have a sort of roughness about them. Some are blurry, others are grainy, some even have light flaring and lots of shadows, although they aren’t what the traditionals would call ‘perfect’ these have all been taken ‘in the moment’ and Isao has done a fantastic job at conveying his subjects then and there. For some reason I find this sort of photography more appealing to my taste and nature, and it’s not something you can necessarily explain in a few words. We recently took stock of a new Lars Müller book titled telehor The International Review New Vision, a re-print of the publication made in 1936 in four languages and is entirely dedicated to the oeuvre of photographer and painter László Moholy-Nagy. If you’re in to photography this book if for you, once reading you realise how many groundbreaking techniques he used and experimented with, I really need to work this sort of creativity in to my own life!
Today’s photographer Isao Hashinoki was born in Fukuoka Prefecture, he studied under photographer Keiko Okumura and went independent after 3 years, now taking photographs for various publications across Japan. What I also found quite incredible is the diversity in his portfolio, for example he’s taken photographs all the way from fashion to food and landscape, fantastic to see this as most specialise in one area. I hope you enjoy this photography taken from his portfolio, and you’ll have a browse yourself on the link below, there’s plenty more to be seen. I’ve actually known about Isao for a little while thanks to the Jurgen Lehl blog, he seems to take a lot of the photographs of their clothing collection. They’re also very beautiful and I would deem them as lifestyle more than fashion orientated. Anyways, see what you think as they’re sure to inspire.