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Being Focused

Being Focused

I love the feeling when I first start processing images from my Leica Monochrom.  I have the same thought every time.  Why don't I shoot with this camera more.  The image quality is just so fantastic.    The details in each image continue to surprise me.  I spend more time than I normally do looking at each shot. I spoke the other day about the importance of your gear inspiring you.   I think a lot of photographers continue to buy new gear as they are looking for that inspiration.   I believe when you are comfortable with your gear it becomes an extension of you and reflects in your images.

When I go shooting with my Hasselblad I get a lot of satisfaction when I heard the slapping thud of the shutter releasing.  Shooting that camera is a much slower experience than even my Leica so the thud is a validation of sorts that my exposure was correct, my framing was correct and that I set up the shot correctly.  I have been equally pleased lately with my Ricoh GR shots, M9-P shots and expect the same from my new M3-P.

Pairing my collection of cameras down to 5 cameras I really love did one thing for me - it got me really inspired to go out and shoot.   It has helped me to be focused on picture taking and photography.   I have been shooting more than I have in a while.   If you have a camera collection that is collecting dust consider some spring cleaning yourself.

I never get tired of shooting in train stations in Tokyo.   I really like how this one came out.

Today's Configuration: Leica M Monochrom with various Leica Lenses.

Tokyo Train Conductor

Tokyo Train Conductor

Tokyo Train Conductor

Tokyo Train Conductor

One evening after work a few weeks ago I met up with my friend Ann from my last company.  I haven't seen her since my last trip to Hong Kong.   She wanted to see the cherry blossoms so we headed down to Meguro River in Nakameguro.

Nakameguro Station

Nakameguro Station

While it is too crowded the past few years I really love the scenes during ohanami season along the river.

Cherry Blossoms in Tokyo

Cherry Blossoms in Tokyo

Cherry Blossoms in Tokyo

Cherry Blossoms in Tokyo

One way to get a good vantage point is to look if any press are covering the event and see where and how they are shooting it.  In this case there was a young reporter and she had a little step ladder with her to allow herself to get a little hight on the scene.  I figured all I had to do was ask if I could borrow it for a minute...

Cherry Blossoms in Tokyo

Cherry Blossoms in Tokyo

This happy older couple were enjoying drinking, eating and watching the cherry blossoms...

Meguro River Ohanami

Meguro River Ohanami

That's right Cow Books...  Don't worry they are not books about cows.  It is actually packed with a lot of really cool photography books.

Cow Books in Nakameguro

Cow Books in Nakameguro

Random strangers posing for me.   You have to love how happy people are to have their photo taken...

Meguro River Ohanami

Meguro River Ohanami

Another shot from my lunch with John Hall.   He was in town on business and just picked up his first Leica so we went out for a some shooting together.   It is always nice to catch up with John...

John Hall

John Hall

Dave Powell of ShootTokyo

Dave Powell of ShootTokyo

We went out for a little street shooting and explored the camera shops in Shinjuku...  That is a dangerous place for me to go.  The shopping options are a little too endless.  Are you looking for the super rare double aspherical 35mm f/1.4?   Ah yes, we have one in stock.   Are you looking for the <insert crazy expensive super rare camera name here>?  Will get you one of two answers "Ah, yes we have it" or "We can get it".  Tokyo is a dangerous place people (financially that is).

Shinjuku

Shinjuku

It was fun to watch this scene.   There were two women in kimonos asking these 4 kids for directions who all proceeded to whip out different mobile phones for their rapid mobile research.  These ladies seemed very amused.

Shinjuku

Shinjuku

Shinjuku

Shinjuku

100 yen shop!

Shinjuku

Shinjuku

Shinjuku

Shinjuku

This bare tree looks very cool...

Shinjuku

Shinjuku

These 'no bike parking' signs must mean something else than what I think as they seem to imply it is the right place to park you bike given the number of bikes I always find around them.    Perhaps it is one of these things that foreigners misunderstand in Japan.

Bike Parking

Bike Parking

John Hall

John Hall

I love scenes like this.  I could stand forever and wait for the right people to enter the scene...

Shinjuku

Shinjuku

Shinjuku

Shinjuku

Shinjuku

Shinjuku

And now a word from our sponsors...   Actually I having a discussion with John.  He drinks Double Expresso.  I drink Cafe Americano.   They as basically the same thing but one has water.  I was thinking that the Double Expresso is a much more efficient way to get my caffeine.   It takes too long to drink the Americano.  I seem to be carrying one around all day long.  I'm considering a change...

Shinjuku

Shinjuku

Yakitori Alley

Yakitori Alley

Yakitori Alley

Yakitori Alley

These two guys were fantastic...  They were arguing over which bar to go to next.  They looked like best friends having a great time together...

Drinking Buddies

Drinking Buddies

I am working on a lot of the back end of ShootTokyo lately trying to improve performance, search engine optimization and other fun things about blogging you might not get to see.   I am always testing out different software products to help me.   One of the things I am working on is my Alexa Ranking.  It is a ranking of how popular your site is.  I'm not sure how much influence I can actually have on it but it is fun to play with and see what improvements I can make it to.  I love details so I always love tinkering with things like this.  Currently I am sitting as the 114,191 most popular site in the world (accordingly to Alexa.com) and 2,847 in Japan.    Apparently one of the ways they measure traffic is with the Alexa Chrome Plugin so if you are a regular reader of ShootTokyo, using Chrome and want to help me out install the Alexa Chrome Plugin.

If you are naturally curious like me you will be able to see the popularity of sites you are visiting as well as you search the web.   Another cool feature is the Wayback Machine where you can go and see how a website looked in the past.   It is very fun to go back and look at some of the sites that I always visit today and see what they looked like 10 years ago.

ShootTokyo Alexa

ShootTokyo Alexa

Thanks for stopping by today...

A lot going on

A lot going on

The Ricoh GR

The Ricoh GR

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