An alleyway in Koganecho, Yokohama, Japan

Photowalk in Yokohama, 24th November: Composition, Colour & Creativity

It’s been far too long since I did a workshop so on the 24th of November I’ll be out doing one in a part of Yokohama that I haven’t been to for a while but that never fails to deliver. The theme: Composition, Colour and Creativity.

I was back in Koganecho and Hinodecho at the beginning of this week. It’s been a while since I’ve been to either and this week’s visit was a mixture of surprise and reassurance: surprise that parts of Koganecho are undergoing something of a renewal. Reassurance that both areas have some wonderful vistas to offer the wandering, creative photographer.

What will the workshop be about?

The three themes we’ll be exploring will be Composition, Colour and Creativity. It’ll be up to each attendee whether they explore all three in triplicate or choose to concentrate on Creativity and Composition but to leave out the colour and shoot in monochrome.

Composition is the bedrock of most creative pursuits, whether it be a song, a painting, a poem or a photograph that we’re making. Composition brings up issues of both harmony and discord. Collaborative or competing forces. Balance and imbalance. Positive and negative space.¬†Mastering composition or keeping your existing compositional powers honed requires constant exercise. One of the ways I keep my grip on how to use the best composition to create engaging, immersive photographs is to shoot simple subjects. Everyday subjects. Everyday places. Nothing ‘pretty’, no people, quite simply the stuff that most of us might walk past everyday and never give a second thought.

Colour or, if you choose to leave it on one side and shoot monochrome, colour sensitivity in black and white images is one of the many ways to lead and control the eye of the viewer in your photographs. Isolated colour, prevalent colour, dominating colour. In monochrome, dark tones, light tones, mid tones. Seeking out subjects that work because of the concentration of colours or the absence of colours. Shooting in a way that enhances certain colours, saturates them or desaturates them. These are all things we’ll be exploring on the workshop.

Creativity may seem like a topic that speaks for itself. After all, we’re not going to go out and try NOT to be creative. The workshop is designed to help us get creative, feel imaginative about subjects which we may not normally feel so excited about shooting. We’ll be aiming to supercharge our creativity by spending more time looking at, considering and shooting objects and scenes we normally not spend so much time pondering.

There are specific details of the event below but, for now, here are some pictures I took in Koganecho and Hinodecho this week, to help you visualise some of the area:

The where, when, why and how of this workshop

Our meeting place will be Koganecho Station. There’s one main exit and you can find that here on Google Maps. What you’ll see when you get out of the station is this:

Koganecho Station, Yokohama

That’s the station exit on the right, directly under the bridge. I’ll be waiting there.

We’ll aim to be off and walking by 10.30am, so please get there between 10.15 and 10.25 and you’ll have time to grab something from the Family Mart if you need it: drink, snack etc. There are plenty of stores etc on the neighbourhood and, although we won’t be stopping for a sit-down lunch during the day, there’ll be breaks throughout the walk.

The workshop is all going to be done on fairly level footpaths, so if you have specific mobility requirements other than your own two feet, it’s all fairly easy-going and accessible.

As far as what gear to bring with you, this is not a workshop driven by specific gear. Any kind of camera will do, including smartphones. There are some great textures on this walk. If you have a macro lens or a macro capable camera (and the iPhone is also damn good at closeups), then you may want to consider bringing it.

This workshop is suitable for al levels of photographer, from beginners upwards.

We’ll be aiming to end the walk around sunset. After that, for those who want to stick around, we’ll head towards Bashamichi to a cheap, cheerful French/Italian place I know (sort of an upmarket version of Saizeriya) for a drink, something to eat and a chat. I shan’t book the place as it is huge and even at busy times of the day has plenty of seats. If this place does end up not being able to seat all of us, the are is full of other choices.

The fee for the walk is 5000¥, payable on the day. Because of my trusting you to book, come along and pay (instead of taking reservation money up-front), if you book then end up not being able to come, please give me as much notice as possible.

There are ten places available on this walk. Myself and my assistant, Masako, will be there with all you all day to help with anything.

To book yourself a place, drop me a line using the contact form below

Thanks a lot. Look forward to seeing you on the day!

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