Travel photography documents the city, people, atmosphere, and lights & shadow of your destination. Nothing needs to be staged. There is always something special about the everyday life of a place.
Everything is so fresh and eye-catching when you are traveling. You will find something extraordinary out of the ordinary, as you are not accustomed to the land.
In spring of 2017, I visited Italy for the fifth time in my life. I chose Naples and Puglia as my destinations, which are located in the southern part of Italy. A discreet camera is your best partner when it comes to taking street photography. The X100F, combined with the two conversion lenses, lets you have 28mm, 35mm and 50mm equivalent angles of view with minimum aperture of F2. I really do not need anything else. Featuring a camera body that can almost be covered by one's hand, the X100F does not intimidate people and I get to capture everyday life in just the way it should be.
I constrain myself to a single angle of view for the day when I go out. I only take 28mm, 35mm or 50mm and do not deattach lenses. By doing so, I never confuse myself as to how I should communicate with the subject. I know instantly how I should compose the picture, and can capture it with ease.
The city of Naples is very fast-paced so I chose the 35mm angle of view. I set the focus to Zone. I looked into the finder and played with the focus lever to capture the scenery. I was able to take photos with no delay.
I left busy Naples and visited Puglia. The sky was blue and the sun was bright. If you open the aperture, images can become overexposed easily. Dazzling light can make the colors appear hazy.
I also brought my instax Share Printer with me for this trip. I believe the job of a photographer is to make people happy with photography. It may sound somewhat exaggerated, but as a documentary photographer who captures everyday life and publishes it as my work, I believe my job is not complete just by publishing. If possible, I would like to revisit the place where I created my images and hand the photographs to each model. I would personally want to see it if I were a model for someone else's work. I think the photo has added sentiment when it is handed to the model. This is not easy, especially if the photos were taken in overseas. Of course, one can send images with an email, but that is less personal.
What I decided to do is to print pictures I just took with the instax Share Printer and handed photos to the people I came across. It is not the same as real prints, but instax prints have their own charm, as the prints can be handed in an instant.
I handed copies to not only those who posed for my photography, but also to the people who just happened to be in the picture. Their faces looked puzzled when I first gave them the prints, which is essentially a blank white piece of paper. But as soon as the image developed and became apparent, and they realize that I had just taken their picture, they got excited and happy for the surprise. "Bravo! Grazie!" These words make me so happy.
This is at Osteria in Ostuni. The young waiter passionately explained their menu to me as I could not understand Italian. When I took my camera out, he posed for me.
I met a store owner in Naples. He let me take his photo with his dog at his storefront. I went back to the store later that day, but the store was already closed and I was not able to give him the print. Since that day, this has become my favorite shot.
￼The fishermen were preparing a net in Procida. When I handed them a print, they looked as if they were not particularly interested. But when I looked back as I was walking away, they were all looking in the print waiting for the image to emerge. You have to wait for these instax prints. That wait makes instax more fun.
People no longer make prints these days. As photography become more and more digital, most of us only look at pictures on monitors. But photography becomes more interesting when it is hanged on the wall or held in the hand. Every print has its uniqueness. I've visited Italy five times in seven years. I wish to publish my work as an exhibition and create a photo book. I would want to revisit Italy with that book in my hand.