When the Camera Speaks

When the camera speaks, what are photographers trying to tell us? What do they want us to feel?
Why did they choose photography to express themselves?
Leading photographers share their thoughts about their craft.

Season 01

Creating art on a pure white canvas

Interview: December 5, 2014;
Posted: February 12, 2015

A native of Toyama Prefecture, a mountainous region in central Japan famous for the Tateyama Kurobe Alpine Route, Hiroyuki Yakushi began his photographic career at the Alpine Ski World Cup of 1969. He has continued to cover international skiing at the highest levels, including world championships, world cups, and winter Olympics. He earned his first official Olympic accreditation at the 1972 Sapporo Winter Games and has since documented twelve winter games, most recently Sochi in 2014. In 1993, he was responsible for organizing the media coverage for the Shizukuishi World Championships. He has also covered a number of other major international sporting events, including the Tour de France, The Open Championship, and Wimbledon.

Opening windows onto the lives of others

Interview: October 16, 2014;
Posted: December 24, 2014

While at high school, Natsuki Yasuda traveled to Cambodia on a program run by Japanese educational NGO Children Without Borders, where she documented projects that provided children and young people with working and life skills. Now a professional photojournalist, she reports on wars and natural disasters in Southeast Asia, the Near East, Africa, and Japan. Since the Tohoku earthquake her main base of operations has been the city of Rikuzentakata, from which she has documented developments in the disaster zone. In 2012 Yasuda won the eighth Younosuke Natori Photography Award for her work on Uganda's HIV-AIDS orphans.
Natsuki Yasuda's official website: http://www.yasudanatsuki.com/

A fresh start for an "artisan of the camera" leads to a National Treasure

Interview: September 3, 2014;
Posted: November 19, 2014

Shin Yamagishi established his professional reputation with portraits of celebrities, including a host of Japanese actors and popular singers. After publishing more than 400 photographic books, Yamagishi has been scaling down what he calls his "glamour" career in the past five years, in order to concentrate on projects such as documenting Hokkaido's Ban-ei sled and horse racing and photographing the extraordinarily lifelike ball-jointed creations of master doll maker Kyo Ohtake. For the past six years, he has been working on portraits of Japanese men—businessmen, politicians, and athletes—putting them together in the Shunkan no kao ("Face of the Moment") exhibition, held every year at the Olympus Galleries in Tokyo and Osaka.
Shin Yamagishi's official website: http://www.yamagishi-shin.com/

Ready to capture that dramatic animal moment

Interview: July 29, 2014;
Posted: October 27, 2014

Mitsuaki Iwago began his career in animal photography in 1970 after a trip to the Galapagos Islands, where he was overwhelmed by the sheer diversity and scale of the natural world. Many of Iwago's photographs—some astounding, others calming, but always wonderfully imaginative—have won him many global accolades, including being the first Japanese photographer whose work has featured twice on the cover of National Geographic. Iwago is the author of several photographic collections, including Animals on Earth and Ikimono no okite (The Natural Order of the African Plain). In recent years his cat-themed photographic albums have also been hugely successful.
Digital Iwago http://www.digitaliwago.com/

Creating a photographic legacy for everyone to enjoy

Interview: July 18, 2014;
Posted: September 19, 2014

Tetsuro Shimizu worked as Toshinobu Takeuchi's assistant for three years before embarking on his solo career. He specializes in landscape photography in a variety of formats, ranging from snaps to documentary work, all of which display his highly original viewpoint. In 2005, he won the first Yonosuke Natori Photographic Prize for Street Boy. In 2012, he published CHANGE, a collection that encompasses his 15 years in Mongolia, for which he received the Photographic Society of Japan's Newcomer's Prize in 2014.
Tetsuro Shimizu's Official Website: http://www.tokyokarasu.net/

They are at their most wondrous when vibrantly alive

Interview: May 27, 2014;
Posted: July 29, 2014

Kazuo Unno has loved both insects and photography since a young age. After graduating from Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, he has pursued a career as a freelance insect photographer that has taken him all over Japan and around the globe. In 1990 he established a studio in Komoro City, Nagano Prefecture, which he uses as a base of operations for his nature studies. In 1994, he won the Photographic Society of Japan's annual prize for his book Camouflage and Mimicry of Insects. Chairman of the Society of Scientific Photography
Kazuo Unno's Digital Insect Diary: http://eco.goo.ne.jp/nature/unno/
Komoro Diary: http://eco.goo.ne.jp/nature/unno/diary/