All posts tagged: model

Tokyo Photographer Irwin Wong - Kimono Now (11)

Kimono Designer Jotaro Saito + Tokyo Fashion Icon Kumamiki

  Sometimes you really have to work for your shots, and sometimes all you need to do is show up. When you have a top class kimono designer¬†providing attire, an entire Japanese restaurant booked out for your location and a beautiful ¬†model organized for the entire day then I can definitively enter that into the ‘glad to be a photographer’ variety of days that I’m on the job. As I mentioned in my previous blog post I was fortunate enough to work with Manami Okazaki on her most recent book ‘Kimono Now‘, which is in stores currently. There were plenty of photos taken and a lot of the shots weren’t used so I thought I’d post some of the off-cuts here on my blog. Ah the memories. I was still using a Nikon D4 back in those days ūüôā Jotaro Saito’s website is here for anyone curious, and he has a pretty cool showroom in Roppongi Hills for those who need kimonos on the cutting edge of fashion. ¬†This is the man himself: Next up …

Are you having fun yet? Why test shooting is important

We live in interesting times for photography. Technology has changed the landscape of the craft beyond recognition over the past 5 years. Each new generation of cameras outstrips the models of the previous years by exponential factors. Professional grade RAW video is cheaper than ever. Photography has never been easier to learn, and as a result hundreds of new ‘professionals’ are flooding into the industry, stars in their eyes with the promise of glamor-filled photoshoots. Some of these photographers are terrible. Most of them are decent. Enough of them are phenomenal. There are countless photographers out there better than you, and a scary amount of them are younger than you. Every day that you aren’t shooting photos, thousands of truly awesome photos are being made – and none of them are yours. Everyday that you don’t pick up the camera, that you decide to ‘take a break’, the rest of the photography world surges on ahead of you and without you. Not to mention that technology convergence means that photographers need to learn other disciplines; …

He loves the lamentations of the auditors

My latest movie poster parody featuring random salary men from Tokyo! ¬†For the other ones in the series (and even a making-of video!) check here and here. As you can see this poster is based on the 1982 movie Conan the Barbarian, which to me is an immensely enjoyable film, and I’m happy to be able to spoof it in this way. Scroll down for a very brief overview of how it was lit and put together. So, here’s the original shot I had to work with – as you can see due to my lack of a studio I was forced to shoot it in a nearby park. Here’s the breakdown of the lighting: Light A and B were both Profoto ¬†1D Airs, with no modifiers. Since they already come with that nice frosted glass covering over the flash tube they give off a nice quality of light even without the extra diffusion. On the left side of light B I had taped a small gobo just to control the spread of light enough …

Some light experimentation

So I’ve just finished up one of the busiest periods this year (not bad considering the country is crippled by nuclear/humanitarian/political crises), and am going through a short period of downtime which I’m using to get on with my personal projects. ¬†Some of them are still in production but I’m looking forward to posting them as soon as I’m done, as well as the results of the editorial work that I’ve been doing. In the meantime however, who doesn’t like hot models and a bit of location lighting? Meet Takako Hotta, actress, model and dentist (yep), who was kind enough to accompany me to try out a few things with light that I was curious about. ¬†Namely, using droplets of water to refract light in interesting ways. I figure, as a photographer the more ways I have to work with light, the better for me in this business. Also I was kind of trying to emulate the effect of this Japanese advert that recently caught my eye in the subways. ¬†I liked the use of …

The Gamblers

I FINALLY managed to find time to do a shoot for myself recently, as I am in need for some recent personal work that can potentially fill my portfolio. If you’re a working photog, *never* underestimate the power of putting a bit of money into a personal shoot in your own time. There is no way that it can look bad in the eyes of the art directors and photo editors who see the effort you put into your personal work. ¬† If you’re not a working photog and are aiming to build a portfolio for a possible jump into the pro photographer’s world, then you have no excuse not to have plenty of portfolio-fillers from personal shoots – you shoot for yourself all the time anyway! So get out there, organize a shoot and fill that portfolio up. ¬†Chase Jarvis really says it well in his ‘Consequences of Creativity’ video, so go ahead and give that a look. For this shoot I was very lucky to have access to my mate Koji’s bar Rhythm …

It ain’t all just about work…

Sometimes you gotta get out of the house and do something fun. ¬†Experiment. Shoot something for yourself. It’s good to remind myself that photography is still a creative pursuit for me and not just a way to pay bills. ¬†Went down to the beach with Johan and Leiah. ¬†Tried a bunch of styles with a bunch of different setups. Big lights and small lights, no lights. ¬†Flexed those creative muscles for a change. Tons of fun, and made me wish I had more time to do it. ¬†Looking forward to doing a lot more stuff for myself soon. More later!          

Yoyogi Boxing Gym

Here’s another batch of photos shot at a recent workshop I held in Yoyogi, Tokyo. ¬†The great thing about teaching photography in Tokyo is that you are always surprised at who will become willing subjects for your students – this time it was ¬†student Rob Piazza who introduced this boxing gym to us, so we were very lucky to have two obliging and aspiring boxers to pose for us. We used Nikon speedlights (a combination of SB-800s and SB-900s) to illuminate our subjects with Honl snoots and the Orbis ringflash for the second and third photo. ¬†Great fun was had by all – especially the boxers, who were very much getting into the spirit of things, as you can see from the last photo! Lighting workshops run every weekend – this week: ¬†Lighting 101 for those who need a primer on flash to begin feeling confident about it. ¬†Email irwin@irwinwong.com if you feel like checking it out. Thanks to everyone who keeps coming out to these workshops – it’s always great to be in a …

Marissa @ abandoned train yard

Some shots from the weekend. Sorry for the late update guys, but things have been getting busier. This is Marissa – and as is fairly evident she does a great job modeling. The location was the industrial complex at Ougimachi, where there was an excellent section of unused train track for shooting. At least, we were hoping it was unused – no one ended up under a train so that was a good thing.        

Teva and Gen – Workshop

Big thanks to all who attended the session on Sunday!¬† As is always the case it’s the models and the students who provide the most creative energy, with me just sitting around in the background fiddling with lights.¬† Occasionally I do get to take the odd shot though, and here’s a couple from the workshop. Here’s a shot of first-time model Teva – you wouldn’t believe it was her first time in front of a camera, would you? Very difficult to concentrate looking through a lens when you’ve got that innocent yet strangely perilous gaze staring back down at you. Next is Gen, who is a dancer, and had a physique that would definitely bring more ladies to these shoots. I only managed to get shots of him with his shirt on though – sorry ladies.

Nourah – Workshop

Had a studio session on Saturday that I’ve been looking forward to for ages.¬† I was lucky enough to get a hold of professional belly dance instructor and dancer Nourah, who is seriously amazing to see perform. I’ve been privileged to work with Nourah before, but this is the first time I’ve gotten her into a studio to myself, and to her credit she just looked amazing in front of the camera. Many thanks to Justin and Alex for coming along and another special thanks to Justin for lending his SB900. Here are some of the shots:   Did this with three lights – 1 SB900 in a snoot pointed at her face from camera left 1/32 power, 1 SB800 bounced into a reflector for fill from the lens axis at 1/8 power, and 1 red-gelled SB-900 behind the sheer piece of fabric at 1/2 power.¬† 1/250 sec at f6.3, though that might have changed as we fiddled around with things. These shots are some of my favourites from the session.¬† Used a 24″ Apollo …