In Kyoto I discovered that temples had an entirely different character at night. Some areas are unlit (and even my XT3 isn’t good enough to shoot those without a tripod) but some areas are lit selectively, which makes for really moody shots. This guy was hurrying to visist every shrine and offer a quick prayer.
I would have loved to do a long exposure shot of this zen garden at the back of Nijo Castle, but tripods were (understandably) not allowed, so I had to make do with stabilization. Still, I quite like the end result, benefiting from a rare ray of sunlight.
Ever since I was a teenager I was fascinated with Sengoku era Japan. Visiting Nijo castle brought back all of these fantasy images of samurais and ninjas, and even though intellectually I know how different from reality these images are, the visit brought me back to my childhood dreams. I kept trying to capture evocative images rather than descriptive ones, and this one falls in that camp.
My daughter insists on lighting candles for the dead wherever we go (and no matter what the religious denomination) which is how I ended up on the other side of the candle rack in Kyomizu-dera temple. When I saw these two light their own candles (more likely Chinese tourists dressed in kimonos than actual kimono wearing Japanese) I knew I had a good shot.
Fuji TX2 (XPAN) + Ilford FP4+
When you have this kind of vista in front of you is when the xpan truly shines. I wish I’d had time to go and explore the beaches and coves shown here, but alas traveling for work rarely offers that option.
Another shot from Bordeaux’ Cimetière de la Chartreuse. These two stark parallel crosses appealed to me.
Fuji TX2 (XPAN) + Rollei Redbird 400
I can’t say that this experiment with the Rollei Redbird was conclusive. The film is so grainy that most of the shots (including what I think might have been some good compositions) are useless. A few of them have low enough grain that I can tolerate it, and this one is one of those. I was fascinated by the tree and while I didn’t think the silhouette was going to be quite so stark, I like the end result a lot.
*Resting in the Shadow of a Tree*
When you shoot cemeteries, as a photographer you’re conflicted: you want moody shots because of the subject matter and that suggests overcast light or rolling clouds. But generally as a photographer you tend to crave directional light, especially sunlight at dawn or dusk. This shot is the latter, in Bordeaux’s ‘Cimetière de la Chartreuse’. The shadow of the tree over the crypt seemed ominous and I decided to frame it as such.
*Outdoor Dance Lesson*
Fuji TX2 (XPAN) + Kodak T-Max 400
To anyone who’s been in China, this probably looks like Tai-Chi, but it’s not, it was actually a dance lesson in Xiangyang park. Still, it makes me think that there’s a similar Tai-Chi photo to be made…
*Angel in the Woods*
The comparison will probably sound strange, but at times, with those statues and tombs lost in the middle of the wilds, Highgate Cemetery reminded me of some of the more obscure ruins near Siem Reap, with stone overrun by vegetation.