Stay Sharp

Friday, October 27, 2006

Maestro Ryushi, Tattooist & Painter

My friend Ryushi was doing this body paint project the otherday so I went over to his place to take a look and shoot some for my own future proejct. Ryushi is an old school artist and it's always a pleasure to be around the man.

Tokyo Metal: Pulling Teeth

Went to another Pulling Teeth gig the other night, this time in the well lit LIQUID ROOM in Ebisu here in Tokyo. Got a few decent images of the band.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Linchpin Literatura V

Glen E. Friedman gives us FUCK YOU HEROES PHOTOGRAPHS 1976 - 1991 and THE IDEALIST, both from Burning Flag Press. Good chance to see in THE IDELIST how a skate board and band photographer sees the world he lives in outside the skatepark or concerthall. Great documentary/travel photography. The FUCK YOU HEROS contains some of this worlds most famous music photography, you are gonna recognize some images for sure, cool stuff of Rollins and Black Flag!

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Slaytanic Wehrmacht

Japans metal fest No1 kicked off last weekend and some of the worlds leading metal band showed up and gave us all a hell ride of a lifetime. Bands like BLOOD SIMPLE, LAMB OF GOD, MASTODON, SLAYER, UNEARTH, HAREBREED, DIO, LOYAL TO THE GRAVE, THE BLACK DHALIA MURDER, SURVIVE, CATHEDRAL, ANTHRAX, NORA, UNITED AND NAPALM DEATH really came to their right elements at the event. Did two cool photo sessions, shooting the tattoos of Scott Ian from ANTHRAX and Kerry King from SLAYER, really cool guys with great ink. Both had nice black & grey work done by Mr. Paul Booth from Last Rites Tattoo studio.
I have seen quite alot of metal concerts in my life but nothing beats a SLAYER concert when it comes to raw power, fucking awesome!
NAPALM DEATH and BLACK DAHLIA MURDER was not far behind.

So once again, look out for next issue of TATTOO BURST, rock on people....

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Intensified Awareness

Henry Rollins ( memories as the lead singer in BlackFlag when the mosh meant more than just running round in a circle. His tales of dividing his life between being on tour with the band and writing in his "shed/home" is a true eye opener. This guy has been an inspitartion for me for many years (what else, a guy reading Henry Miller and listens to ZZTOP) and his GET IN THE VAN - ON THE ROAD WITH BLACK FLAG is a really cool book. Published from Rollins own publishing company 2.13.61 ( Make sure to check out this books from Rollins 2.13.61 as well: SMILE, YOU'RE TRAVELING, BLACK COFFEE BLUES and DO I COME HERE OFTEN?

Quote : ..."When someone betrays me, I almost want to thank them. Why? It's an educational experience. You can push yourself forward immeasurable distances in understanding. In the last week I have learned a lot about myself and the people I work with. One must find the difference between paranoia and what I call "intensified awereness". I think I am finding out the difference."

Great photogarphy as well, some by Glen E. Friedman

7.1MP v.s 6x7MF

I have an old YASHIKA Mat-124G, a top viewing twinlens medium format box camera that is in mint condition. Bought it for just$150 from an old tired studio photographer going into retirement and I have been shooting with it on a few occations. Just that I found out that, even if it is a really cool looking piece of equipment and it can teach you one or two things of "real" (I said that!) photography, it will just not fit my shooting style. I need something faster, more practical and easier to move around with. Usually I don't have the time to set things up on a tripod and then figure out what is up and what is down. So by chance I got this almost new digital Canon thing from a friend who tought it was broken. I took it to the Canon Service here in Tokyo and after 40 minutes the guys there had fixed the problem (for free!) and I was on my way.

Handy little thing and takes decent images. But here we go again, it just doesn't fit my shooting style. Too small to hold and I just hate to have to look at a LCD screen at an arms length to shoot stuff. These small digital wonders have opened up a new world of easy acces to photography for some, but also closed down the craft of photography and workstyle for some, well, that would be me then. There are certain things in life I think looks really stupid, one of them is a person shooting with a compact digital camera, staring on that screen like the world around him doesn't exists (another would be a person smoking a cigarette or playing with his/her mobile phone....hilarious, to be addicted to an electronic gadget or/and a plant!!!). I am going to continue to use my little compact camera, on jobs where I can not bring my SLR gear (guess that if I ever go to North Korea or... a titty bar that it would be useful, will probably never happen though..) since it works on some stuff in some situations.

So what is the solution for this luxurious predicament? Of course, the 35mm is still the king when on the road, never had any problems with it exept weight and street value (bag slashers wet dream that nice gear you have around your neck). But what's on my mind is a medium format rangefinder. Either a 6x4,5 or a 6x7. The Fuji GA 645 or the Fuji GW 670 II might be the way to go for me. Back to film, back to the future. I borrowed a GA 645 from a friend on a recent trip to the States and shot landscape and road travel with it and even if it is near to fully automatic the images turned out just great. Kind of fun to shoot with and compact enough to carry around where ever you might go (North Korea, titty bar...same shit to me). So maybe later today it's trading day here in Tokyo for m.w.c.p. Bye bye YASHIKA, hello FUJI.

People, give me a comment on this topic, am I the only one having to wrestle with my own work style from time to time?

Sunday, October 08, 2006

World Traveler

Check out this cool link good people, ever wanted to se how a place looks like before going there...from the air? Get a feel of how the destination is laid out before actually setting your foot there.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

The Station View

This gal was waiting for a friend at Shinjuku station when I passed by. I just happend to have my camera ready and snapped 2 shots of her before she looked up to greet her friend and then took off. There are a lot of cool images and designs all around Tokyo but it seems like people seldom take a second, stop up to check it out, busy busy busy, life's too short to bother with trivialities like that...make money or diiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiie...

On The Road Again...

Bangkok being my second home after Tokyo is a great city to stroll around aimlessly with a camera over your shoulder. It's safe and the happy locals will leave you alone to shoot in your own tempo. I have over the years found my self at ease here in the "City Of Angels" of S.E Asia and returns back every year.

On The Road Again...

Digital street photography in Kathmandu and Pokhara.

Hermes Knife

Images for my column "GLOBAL FOCUS" in KNIFE magazine. This time m.w.c.p focus on Paris and what would Paris be without upper class trend setter Hermes? ...well, don't ask me, but they do have cool knives and Paris is a great place so it's gonna look great.

Next issue is the December issue and covers the Dengisar Dagger from Central Asia (I focused on Turfan in Western China) so the Paris/Hermes piece will be out in the Januari issue, check it out.

Monday, October 02, 2006


Just for the record, these guys are speed freaks!! The outlaw NFK motocycle bandits roam Tokyo faster, louder and unsafer than just anyone I have ever seen so far. They deserve a place on this blog, they have earned it in burned rubber!

Tokyo Metal : Pulling Teeth

Went down to see PULLING TEETH ( at Shinjuku Loft last night with my buddy Jeremy. Some kind of 30 anniversary of the place so there were bands playing all day till the next morning. Pretty slow though but the "Teeth" pulled the largest crowd and kicked ass as always. Shot the whole show with this tiny little Canon IXY 7.1MP, handy if you're not in the mood to carry around that huge SLR with the 200mm bazooka lens, but a slippery little thing to hold and the autofocus was just too slow for this headbanging speed metal trio. Turned out cool in a way though...