Karma! — and a poll

Waiting for a train

Waiting for a train. The compression to JPG and the second compression to WordPress killed the color. I like the juxtaposition of the couple in the background and the man and woman on the phone, most probably with their partner while the young man in the middle scans the crowd, seemingly waiting for someone. 

Have you ever been accosted by a Japanese person with a flash or snap, snap? Armed with my Nikon, I am Karma. This what I kept telling myself winding down the small streets near Yokohama Station. I took 1300 pictures today.

I’m trying to get a feel for shutter speed vs f/stop. My goal was to practice composition while flipping through the controls. Today was the first time I went out just to shoot and the second time I shot people.

Young man working

Young man working. I really like the structure of and youth in his face. The street is packed, noisy, and filling with drunken college kids and he’s in his own space. This is without any editing.


And this is with a little color boozing. I liked this shot because the young woman just happened to come into the shot. Part of me feels like she distracts from the composition, another that the look she gives adds subtext. Opinions?

a young man in yokohama

This is a crop. I waited for this other guy to walk into the shot to help build an illusion that they’re both looking at something just out of the frame. I felt this would make the viewer wonder what.

young man playing games in yokohama

This is my personal favorite, and the very first shot. I wanted to juxtapose the young man working at his video game and the other guy playing in his work.

I picked out a couple I liked and did a little editing with the image software. As I’m teaching myself composition, I’d appreciate it if you’d tell me which you like, or give me some critical feedback.For example, if I asked you to chose one of the four above, or one of the three below, which would you chose?

portrait of a man working in yokohama

The picture was slightly wider. I liked the line the three people make, but cropped I felt they made good individual portraitist. Which version do you like?

young mother in yokohama

She’s not well off. Young, too young, with a baby waiting for a cheap meal at a falafel truck.Keep in mind, she’s working: There is no job more difficult than being a parent. 

young man working

Aside from physical aesthetics, this is a young man from the middle east with his own business. It takes guts. He passes his work week that tiny space and he looks healthy, fit, happy.

I will try to finish my food post on Candied Orange Peels by tomorrow night.

7 Comments on “Karma! — and a poll

  1. Not that I know lots about photography (especially as comp is so difficult to teach) it was when I scrolled through your post (I’m using a laptop) that I could really see certain photos. The first, with everything going on above their heads is not only superfluous but distracting. Cropped just above their heads and you really begin to focus. The same with the boy & headphones and the girl looking toward camera. Take a strip of white paper card and hold that against your monitor and slide it into place. There’s a name for this, but I can’t remember it. It’s two pieces of L shaped white card, as opposites, that can create both square and landscape/portrait crops. Can be a very cheap and effective tool.


    • Thanks for the feedback.

      I thought about cropping the image, but I’ve been reading about “negative space”. But now I can see what you mean.

      And thank you for the suggestion. I will definitely try it.


  2. I like this journey very much, Steven! Of the top four, the second one: the young woman now seen may well be looking at you, but she appears to be looking at the youth with the placard; and this makes it interesting.
    Of the trio, also the second: I like best the wider shot with more in it. I fear I’m a fairly simplistic viewer, as you can tell: I hope you get some much more informed opinions !


    • Thank you.

      I’m still sifting through — and I want to go out again! I need to practice woking in different light. 🙂


      • When it comes to really good cameras, I can only imagine that one needs to practise for ages and in all manner of different circ.s.
        Rotsa ruck, me old china ! 🙂


      • Steven !!! – that is APPALLING !!!
        [M.R. takes out pearl-handled Colt 45 and shoots him dead]


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