I'm very happy that I was invited to Fujifilm X-Photographers' Stories and I welcome you all once more very warmly. Recent time you could read article about what I`m using inside my bag.
My name is Tomasz Lazar and I'm photographer from Poland, who is mainly working in documentary, reportage and portrait photography. A lot of my time I also spend on street photography. I received such Awards as World Press Photo Picture of the Year International, Grand Prix at Łódź Photo Festival and many others.
Recently I've spent 2 months in Tokyo where I was doing my work for my PhD in Photography. During this time I've also done work for Joop Swart Master class organized by World Press Photo Organization. This work will be about Aokigahara Forest called Suicide Forest. In coming time you will be able to see this work on my website - www.tomaszlazar.pl . During my stay I've also done work with Fujifilm about the Shinjuku station called “Shinjuku Crush”. What is important to say that each day 3,5 mil. of commuters travel through Shinjuku Station. I decided to choose most crowded platforms with number 13 (Yamanote Line) and 14 (Chuo Line).
For it I've used X-Pro2 camera with the zoom lens XF100-400mmF4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR. It is not typical lens for doing documentary/street photography project, but if you know how to use it you can do everything. It is the same like when you are a chef in the kitchen. You know what do add to food to cook good or very good meal.
First of all XF100-400mmF4.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR is a very good lens. To capture images that I wanted to have I put ISO in X-Pro2 to 5000 ISO and higher. Still the quality of the image was very good plus that gave me times to freeze the moments even when I was using telephoto end of 400mm. Mainly for this work I was using the OVF at X-Pro2 camera.
This big telephoto lens gave me possibility to compress the perspective build two dimensions image with what happens inside the frame. All situations that were happening outside of the car and inside created one. Very important was to wait for this moment when or part of the equation will come together. Also it was not about shooting many images but waiting for this situation to happen in the frame. Making surreal images of people rushing to their jobs in the morning at Shinjuku Station.
The whole time during shooting this project I was standing at the same spot. Very important was not to disturb people that are going into the car or going out of it.
What only left me at the end was transforming images to black and white. I used B&W to focus the viewer mainly on the emotions, mood and the topic. Many say that everything was photograph, and is true. But like Marcel Proust said once “The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeing new sights, but in looking with new eyes.”