Old Tokyo, modern stares?

Tokyo’s older, shitamachi districts, are generally friendlier, slower paced areas than their more modern, neon-lit neighbours. But now and again, suspicion it would seem still supersedes acceptance.

Tokyo shitamachi


    • says

      No, they certainly don’t. But yeah, it’s all part and parcel of being out there with a camera. And to be honest, I’ve come to embrace such ‘interaction’ with the camera. Often gives the images something extra.

      • says

        As you know, William Klein really went for the interaction, the person somewhere in the shot that was looking into the lens in his photos.
        It does add something for me too, the photographer is part of the shot. However, some of my friends get embarrassed by it but I don’t care :-)

        • says

          Yes, seeing Klein’s work really brought that home to me. I feel it tends to draws me into the photograph more. And if the photographer is part of the shot, then in many ways so is the viewer.

          I used to get embarrassed about it. Sometimes still do. But likewise, generally I don’t care anymore. To be fair, neither do most of the people I photograph either, which definitely make it easier.

  1. Iwao Yamamoto says

    I often enjoy your wonderful black and white pictures around Tokyo. I myself was born and bred in Shitamachi ( how often I wondered to translate the word in English; that’s impossible though some adequate equivalent words might exist.). So I find quite comfortable to walk there than such towns like Shibuya or Shinjyuku ( at last I feel comfortable in Shinjyuku for I’ve been living very near.) And I feel you often try to take pictures of people who seem to be not quite rich.)
    In these days in Japan we often hear the word 格差社会. In such days not affluent society is thought to be seen in Shitamachi area in this city, Tokyo.
    I want to see how you take pictures there; maybe you like to walk around with your camera.
    See you.

    • says

      Thank you.

      Shinjuku in particular I like, but more often than not I’m drawn to Tokyo’s Shitmachi areas. There’s just something about them I find fascinating. They also feel a lot more ‘real’ than the likes of say Shibuya or Ginza. Plus, as you mention, there’s a growing awareness of the gap between rich and poor, and this is also something that interests me, and is clearly visible in and around shitmachi neighbourhoods.

      Like you I simply like walking round such places and, with camera in hand, I try to capture what I see. A great way to both explore and document the city which is now very much home.

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