Today's dose of inspiration comes from "Tokyokei," a monograph of previously unseen works in black and white by photographer Issei Suda.
I think I might have been bitten by the black and white photography bug – I tried it once a couple of months ago, and I’ve been raring to do it again ever since. I know it’s a little trickier than what I’m used to – that is, color photography – but I’m up for the challenge if it means honing my skill. To me, black and white photography captures its subject in its rawest form, giving off different, often clashing vibes such as elegance and mystery at the same time.
“Tokyokei” is a photo book featuring more than a hundred previously unseen photographs of daily scenes in and around Tokyo by native Tokyoite Issei Suda, taken between the 1970s and the 1980s. When I was first exposed to photography several years back, I naively thought that taking photos like what you’re about to see is literally just as easy pressing the shutter. Of course, it’s almost always not (you’ll have to be lucky to take jaw-dropping photos with less effort than usual), and other photographers have only made things look so easy. Some of Issei Suda’s photos sort of remind me Haruki Murakami’s novels a little, if only because they veer on the surreal and unusual.
“Tokyo is where I was born and raised. Even after the post-war convulsions and the subsequent period of rapid economic growth, this home town of mine never ceases to transform. The Tokyo of my youth has vanished, but still there are times when I feel joyously nostalgic, sensing the happiness at festivals, or observing the unconscious actions of passers-by. As well as being a record of a certain period in Japanese history, this book is also my own private perspective on my home town, and one that I want to hold in my heart for ever”. – Issei Suda on “Tokyokei”