Page 1

P H O T O G R A P H E R S

[

I N

1

K O R E A

P I K +

]

12월

December

[ PIK ] PHOTOGRAPHERS IN KOREA | ISSUE 3 , DECEMBER 2013


You Focus.

[

2

P


3

We Share.

P I K +

]

PIK PICTURE OF THE MONTH: PLAYING WITH FIRE Editor’s favorite National Geographic Photo Contest 2013 Photo by Sunjin Kim. Central Park in Songdo ,Incheon https://www.facebook.com/sjkimphoto http://www.sjkimphotos.com

[ PIK ] PHOTOGRAPHERS IN KOREA | ISSUE 3 , DECEMBER 2013


P I K

[

+

]

There’s always an ocean of excitement putting these issues together. Not only do we get to discover amazing photographic work every month but we get to know a little bit about the incredible people behind the art and to top it all up: we get to share it. Our December issue comes packed with exactly what this month is usually about; the best. After the overwhelming beautiful colors of autumn and an early winter start, we are wrapping up a year full of incredible work and submissions with big plans and dreams for a new 2014. As kids it was always good to receive gifts during the holidays, as we grow older sharing fun and moments seems to be more valuable. We hope to share these timeless moments in every photograph with you, and we want to thank you all for these past 3 months. We are truly humbled by the support we have received from you, and we are looking forward to another great year. We hope you enjoy your holidays and we’ll see you back in January. Enjoy PIK.

Joe Wabe

4


5

ISSUE 3 COLLABORATORS JOE WABE

founder, design & art director

LORRYN SMIT chief editor

JORDAN VANHARTINGSVELDT press sub-editor

RELJA KOJIC

photograpy columnist contributer

YEOUL PARK translator

JOHN STEELE

photography editor & consultant

cover by mason robinson

p h o t o g r a p h e r s i n k o r e a . c o m

WE RECOMMEND READING PIK IN FULL-SCREEN MODE IF YOU ARE ON A PC. ALTHOUGH NONE OF OUR CONTENT COULD BE REGARDED OFFENSIVE IT DOES CONTAIN NUDE PHOTOGRAPHY. MINORS SHOULD READ UNDER ADULT GUIDANCE. [ PIK ] PHOTOGRAPHERS IN KOREA | ISSUE 3 , DECEMBER 2013


[14 ROY CRUZ PHILIPPINES

[18 ALLA PONOMAREVA

[ 22 MASON ROBINSON

U.S.A.

p h o t o g r a p h e r s i n k o r e a . c o m

U.S.A. 6


P I K

7

ROXY HUTTON

+

[

[26

]

SOUTH AFRICA

Featured photographers [ PIK ] PHOTOGRAPHERS IN KOREA | ISSUE 3 , DECEMBER 2013


BEST OF FOLIAGE PHOTO BY SIMON BOND

Every year Korea never ceases to amaze with her red, yellow and orange beauty. We asked you, the readers, to send us your fall foliage pictures from around the country. The submissions we received were really great! Our team chose what we thought were the top pictures based on composition and technique. Enjoy!

PHOTO BY LORRYN SMIT

8


9

PHOTO BY JOHN STEELE

PHOTO BY ILZE LOUW SCHLEBUSCH

PHOTO BY JOE WABE

[ PIK ] PHOTOGRAPHERS IN KOREA | ISSUE 3 , DECEMBER 2013


John Steele is a landscape photographer based in Seoul. To read and see more of his travel pictures from all around Korea visit his blog.

A couple of weeks ago I took a short trip out to the town of Yangsuri, located a little under an hour east of Seoul. I have been there many times to shoot, including a few trips to Doomoolmeori, but on this day I went to a place that I hadn’t been before – to the peak of the mountain which houses the Sohwa Cemetery. My friends and I got there very early in the morning as it was a Korean holiday and we expected there to be many other photographers, as there usually are when we go for our sunrise shoots. Also, we weren’t quite sure how long the hike would take, so we wanted to be safe. According to a blog post about the hike, it was only 30 minutes to the peak and not too steep. In reality, it was about an hour and very steep. Anyway, we made it

Exploring there after some struggles, and we were the first ones to the shooting point. From this point, we were overlooking the city as well as the Doomoolmeori area, where the South Han River meets the North Han River. We were hoping for a ‘Sea of Clouds’ which never appeared, but the conditions were quite strong nevertheless. The top boundary of the clouds formed an unusually perfect straight line across the sky and I was looking forward to doing some long-exposure shots before the sun came up, in order to capture the movement of the clouds. You can see that action in the 10


11

the Morning Calm two pre-sunrise pictures. After taking a couple shots like that, we waited for the twilight and the sunrise to come up over the ridges, and when it did the beautiful morning light accentuated the mountains and rivers below. Yangsuri in general is a great place for photographers. There is this mountain to shoot from, as well as Doomoolmeori and Sujongsa Temple. To get there from Seoul, take the 167 bus from Cheongnyangni Station, the 88 bus from Sangbong Station or the 2000-1 bus from Gwangnaru Station. It is also possible to take the Jungang subway line from Cheongnyangni Station. [ PIK ] PHOTOGRAPHERS IN KOREA | ISSUE 3 , DECEMBER 2013


The World UPSIDE DOWN For the past year and a half, I’ve been getting back into large format photography in a very big way. Most of the cameras that I use I have personally fixed and restored or have had some help to get them back into good working order. On average, my cameras are about 100 years old. I’m primarily a black and white photographer, but my proposed project is to make a Kodak Alaris special order color film run for the largest camera I own which uses a 7x17 inch negative. With today’s very fine film sharpness and dynamic range mixed with today’s scanning and printing technology combined with large format camera technology of the 19 and 20th centuries, we can challenge the digital technology that is available today. A 7x17 inch negative is very large, and once drummed scanned will rival digital capture enlargements for (I suspect) at least the next 20 years. My camera is a panoramic camera that was used to photograph banquets back in 1903 (when the camera was built). At the time, enlargements were not common so if you needed a large family portrait, you would need to find a photographer with a large camera.

12


13

My photographic process can be likened to an oil painter. I’ll often tote my camera out into the field, but only compose one or two images per day with the large camera. As an educator of photography, I’m also required to exhibit my work in galleries and museums. Therefore my end game is to make large master painter-sized wall mural prints to hang in the galleries and museums.

Supporters can pledge $10 for a bookmark, handmade in the darkroom, $25 for a handwritten and signed postcard, $50 for a 2014 calendar made with some of my favorite images from 2012-2013 that were made with a 4x5 and 5x7 inch large view camera in the South Korean mountains, or more for darkroom or digital prints and enlargements.

Lee Smathers, is a foreign professor of Photography at Keimyung University in Daegu, South Korea. His unique photography project proposal will be up in Kickstarter until December 15th, 2013.

[ PIK ] PHOTOGRAPHERS IN KOREA | ISSUE 3 , DECEMBER 2013


[ roy cruz ]

With a sense of time and motion My name is Roy Cruz. I’m a photographer from the Philippines who moved to my wife’s hometown of Tongyeong, Gyeongsangnamdo, in 2008. My photography ranges from portraiture to events, from commercial photography to weddings. However, the heart and soul of my photography lies in landscape, travel, and documentary work. 14


15

Fast forward to the late 90s when I was in college studying Broadcast Communication. I had originally wanted to be a radio DJ but, as it turns out, the side courses on video and photography would have the most impact on my life. With my father’s Olympus OM-1 camera in hand, I learned the ins and outs of black and white film photography, while the video classes helped me develop an eye for documentary and reportage. Looking back, it is the combination of artistic inclinations during childhood and the sensibilities developed during college that have created my current photographic style. I love to capture real moments in the most beautiful or interesting ways possible. It feels more natural to let moments unfold before me and capture them without outside interference. I particularly love landscapes with a sense of time and motion. I also love street photography and capturing slices of life. My perfect recipe would be beautiful light, a person’s silhouette, and a decisive moment. Forever the optimist, I believe that there is beauty in everything and it’s my job to find and capture it.

[ PIK ] PHOTOGRAPHERS IN KOREA | ISSUE 3 , DECEMBER 2013


Coming to Korea has proven beneficial to me as a photographer and as a person. I left my relatively young freelance career in Manila, which meant losing steady clients and the network that I had built. While that doesn’t sound very good at all, uprooting myself and basically starting again from scratch in Korea has made me value the craft even more. In Manila, I was dangerously close to letting photography become just another job. When I came to Korea, I began to shoot for myself again. I realized the number one client will always be yourself. Shoot for you first and feed your soul. That will then carry over when you do have to shoot for others.

16


17

In terms of technique, I love to use long exposures. My tripod, cable release, and filters are my best friends when doing landscapes. On the street photography and documentary side, small, unobtrusive gear is preferred. Mirrorless cameras have proven to be perfect for my needs. Add the fact that I’m usually traveling with my 2-year old daughter, and having minimal gear makes even more sense. My current travel and personal photography kit includes a Fujifilm X100s and a wide converter lens. My work gear includes a Canon 5D Mark II accompanied with 14mm, 24-70mm, and 70-200mm f/2.8 lenses.

[ PIK ] PHOTOGRAPHERS IN KOREA | ISSUE 3 , DECEMBER 2013


[ alla ponomareva ]

A product of my imagination Studying Communication and TV Production at the University of Delaware, I dreaded the amount of time it took to edit and compress hours of footage in a couple minute segment. At that point, it didn’t even dawn on me that shooting still images or photographs would be my newly found hobby – practically an obsession – years later in the foreign country of South Korea. 18


19

I almost didn’t make it to Korea, what with my friends discouraging me from getting on the flight, assuming the worst. Yet my stubbornness persevered and, five years later, I still call Korea my home away from home. Having had a number of chances to

travel to surrounding countries in Southeast Asia, I decided to learn a thing or two about travel photography. This was about three years ago. The world of aperture, gear, light, composition, bokeh, and HDR captivated me as it seemed that there

was a plethora of information to last a lifetime of learning. Though it may appear daunting and discouraging for some, I see photography as a way to stay young, inquisitive, and imaginative

[ PIK ] PHOTOGRAPHERS IN KOREA | ISSUE 3 , DECEMBER 2013


20


21

The photographs you see featured here are a product of my imagination. I enjoy pushing the limits of what seems like a perfect image by replicating, rotating, cropping, and reconstructing it to an engaging combination of confusion, familiarity, and the unknown. Some of these images are reflections of staircases, others are buildings or water or hallways and light, can you tell which one is which? One of the best things about our generation is the amount of free photography-related information that is available to us 24/7 online. Sites such as Digital Photography School,

Creative Live, and Youtube are won- photographer or an advanced shootderful resources for all levels of pho- er, I encourage you to keep searching tographers. There are also a number for the limits of your imagination! of groups on Facebook, such as Photography in Korea, Busan Lightstalkers, and Seoul Photographers that are actively shooting on photowalks, hosting workshops, and providing helpful information on printing and other photographer-friendly locations. Some of the Flickr groups that I also participate in are the Seoul Photo Club, Flickr in Seoul, and Korea Images. At the end of the day, the available content is great, but it is up to us to dedicate our time, patience, and hard work in order to learn and develop. Whether you’re an iPhone [ PIK ] PHOTOGRAPHERS IN KOREA | ISSUE 3 , DECEMBER 2013


[ mason robinson ]

A little human exchange “Some of us are soup makers, while others bake bread,� is an idea that repeats in my mind whenever I think about art. Still around from the days of creating LP covers by hand, my cynical design professor had mentioned exactly that during class one day. Whenever I start a new project, I am reminded of that analogy.

22


23

It is the perfect situation for photographers of any level to get out and practise their skills. So what is Cosplay? Cosplay; a shortened term for costume play, is where people get dressed as characters from comics, anime, manga, television or just about anything. Cosplay in Korea is quite active with events being held almost every month in Seoul and Busan, attracting everyone from amateur and hobbyist photographers to professionals with lighting equipment and pro gear.

[ PIK ] PHOTOGRAPHERS IN KOREA | ISSUE 3 , DECEMBER 2013


Build a foundation, add the right ingredients, and adjust the seasoning to taste until everything becomes a masterpiece. Based on an apathetic decision to take an elective class in college, the birth of my first photos began. To my surprise, that’s all I wanted to do and focused my energy towards photography from then on. Working as a photojournalist and editor soon after, I spent a lot of time managing a rental studio. That’s where my interest of studio lighting, portraits, and fashion photography stemmed. The creation of an artistic representation of a person, also known as “portraiture,” is my first choice. It’s simple because people like to stare at people. Looking at a photograph is a comfortable thing, quite the contrast to staring at a stranger on the street directly in the eyes. Everywhere in the world, there are stigmas attached to how you make your money. You’re judged based on age, race, sex, etc. That’s natural, whether you like to think you’re guilty or not. Moreover, when you arrive at a new place, you do the same thing. First you see the shiny buildings and flourishing businesses, things and people you want you to see. Eventually, you will get to know the other side of things. For example, how a place can function – which company helps build things and grows your food, which chef cooks it, or who is responsible to clean it up. I grew up in a small town in the state of Michigan. My parents and others around me have created their own ‘humble’ livings doing such neces24


25

sary tasks. While all the same concepts exist in Korea, it still has its own uniqueness. As I grow older, I gain more and more respect for the people in my life and what they do. Which all falls into a ‘norm.’ Not everyone in this world becomes a fabulously wealthy superstar, but that doesn’t make him or her uninteresting. I’ve spent a lot of time photographing beautiful landscapes and pretty scenery, but it doesn’t seem to satisfy me. Making portraits of people isn’t only about the act of photographing or the search for the right place, but a human exchange that can prove to be quite challenging and rewarding.

[ PIK ] PHOTOGRAPHERS IN KOREA | ISSUE 3 , DECEMBER 2013


[ roxy hutton ]

City girl searching I am a twenty something South African living and teaching English in Korea with my husband. We first came to Korea in 2010 where we lived in the bustling metropolis of Daejeon for a year, before returning home to South Africa to get married. We have since returned to the tiny town of Buan where we have settled into countryside living. 26


27

I am a blogger turned photographer. I started blogging when I first arrived in Korea (along with every other foreign person living here!). My first blog was called Farmboy & CityGirl, which paved the way for my current lifestyle blog, CityGirlSearching. I was first introduced to the world of ‘real DSLR’ photography by my talented husband (the Farmboy to my CityGirl) and I haven’t looked back since. I say ‘real’, because I was shooting with my cellphone and happy snappy Canon Ixus before, and well, the evidence is in the photographs. From the start, my aim was to produce beautiful and ‘pretty’ images for my blog, and I had no idea that I would get to a stage where people wanted to pay me to capture their special moments. It has all happened rather quickly, I only started shooting in March 2011 with a very old Canon 30D, and editing in Photoshop (powerful but utterly time consuming) and when

[ PIK ] PHOTOGRAPHERS IN KOREA | ISSUE 3 , DECEMBER 2013


28


29

I look back I want to kick myself for not asking more established photographers for their advice when it came to editing. I believe photography should be about capturing the beauty of the moment and the small details that make up the big picture. I am on an eternal search for ‘pretty-ness’ (my chosen spelling of the word for my blog, just incase you were about to question my qualifications to teach English here!). I love shooting all kinds of subject matter, my favorite being people, and of course still life as that is the main content of my blog. I also want my photographs to tell a story, to draw you in, to create beauty out of the ordinary and to leave you with a feeling of happiness after seeing my work. I now shoot with a Nikon D300s, and use a variety of lenses, namely 35mm

and 85mm, and 18-200mm for landscapes shots and do all of my processing in Lightroom. There is so much beauty to capture in Korea, from the fascinating people to the diverse natural landscapes, not forgetting the incredibly pretty stationery. One is never short of subject matter, and I look forward to showcasing more of the ‘pretty-ness’ that South Korea has to offer. Another belief that I have about photography is that it should be about sharing, not just the sharing of the photographs themselves, but also the photographer’s wisdom, and advice for creating and capturing images.

[ PIK ] PHOTOGRAPHERS IN KOREA | ISSUE 3 , DECEMBER 2013


timelapsed Eilis Frawley is an Australian musician who moved to Korea in March of this year. The contrast between her hometown (Adelaide) and life in Korea couldn’t be more different. However, more important than their differences is their greatest similarity – a bustling, energetic arts scene. She loves Korea for how inspiring it is and for its strong and friendly art culture. This inspired her to start her own project while living here. How long have you been doing this? I’ve been involved in the arts scene my whole life, music particularly. I started violin in my early years and in high school took a liking to drums, which led me to invest in a Bachelor of Classical Percussion Performance at the Elder Conservatorium of Music. I arrived in Korea with no instruments. When I saw my apartment, it quickly became apparent I probably would not own many instruments in this land. I needed a new creative outlet. (Thankfully I found a ful-

ly-equipped music studio across the road – oh, Korea.)I wanted a new, challenging project; one that would push my creative mind and from which I could gain new skills - there’s nothing better than starting from square one. I didn’t want to refine current skills as much as learn completely new ones, a mindset I think fits well with my new life in Korea. What was your motivation for start putting together these videos? The first video ‘Debilitating Dialects’ was the result of a migraine that left me bedridden. I spent so much time treating this migraine as a negative impact on my life that I needed to make something positive come of the worst two days of my life (which, in retrospect, is a slight over exaggeration o my behalf). So, the following Friday I decided I would recreate the experience in a simple photo video. It consists of black and white self-portraits showing expressions of loss, confusion, and exhaustion. I then

created a tune that sounds like two songs are simultaneously playing in your brain with the volume set to 100%. That was the first one I completed. It was better received than I ever imagined. When I realised I really enjoyed the creative process involved in this discipline, I decided to make it a longer project. The reason I decided to work in stop motion is because it takes little editing on a computer. I want to spend my time making things rather than scrutinising over small details. So far, this has been a very rewarding – and tactile – experience. Where do you want go with your work? For now I’m really enjoying the learning curve. It’s a challenging process when you have such strong visions for work but little knowledge of how to achieve what you want. I plan on calling Korea home for another year in 2014 and would like to get more involved in the art scene and experiment further with

30


31

multimedia art forms. I still have so much to learn, but it’s a highly rewarding project. As long as people keep enjoying them, I’ll continue to make videos, simply because I can’t think of a better way to spend my lunch breaks. What has been the best part of your project? One of the greatest highlight of this project so far was being accepted to participate in TELEPHONE - A Global Arts Experiment by Satellite Collective. This game works in a similar way to the kids’ game Telephone, where one player starts with a message and whispers it to the next player, who then passes it to the next player, and so on. The message evolves as it travels, often to the surprise of its participants, so much so that it is sometimes completely different than the original message. I have also really enjoyed some of the connections it has opened up around the world, working in such a modern media allows friends, family, acquaintances and strangers from all around the world to see a snippet of my life in Korea.

The worst? One of the worst moment in the project so far was taking photos for the wire animation Hugo and Charlotte because the lighting in my apartment was constantly changing. I could never manage to get one scene done in a work break and my apartment was too dark at night. My apartment got converted from being a comfortable living space to a fully-fledged crazy house. The set took up the entire floor meaning I had to jump from one side of my room to my bed, because I didn’t want to move the tripod or set…it stayed like this for two weeks. Or maybe the worst moment was when I got a skin rash after painting my face with standard paint for the Red, Yellow, Blue video. Now that wasn’t very enjoyable. What’s your most aggressive goal with this project? I want my project to be seen by as many people as possible. I want people to laugh, weep, and relate to them. But most of all, I hope this project will become a stepping-stone to bigger things for my time in Korea. [ PIK ] PHOTOGRAPHERS IN KOREA | ISSUE 3 , DECEMBER 2013


TPE

Photo and words by JORDAN VANHART

Finding the perfect vantage point

Photography isn’t just about capturing the moment and is surely not an art practiced on the cuff. It takes a lot of planning and preparation to snap a photo. Therefore, it is essential for all photographers to utilize each and every tool at their disposal. This week, I will be starting a series on photography applications available on smartphones. One of the most important things to photographers is the quality of light. The ‘blue hour’ is a very popular time among landscape photographers. During this time the quality of light is at its best to attain some magical sky tones in your photographs. It used to take days, if not months, of consistent sky-watching to learn the patterns of celestial body motion. Now, at the advent of photographic and technological advances, it only takes a few minutes thanks to the hard work of application developers. Probably the best sun/moon-tracking app to date is The Photographer’s Ephemeris. Right on startup, TPE contains a bevy of necessary information. If the GPS feature on your smartphone has been activated, the application will automatically detect your location and bring you there on a fairly detailed satellite map. You will then see four lines coming from the pin marking your position: one orange, one yellow, one navy, and one gray (figure 1). The yellow line indicates the degree of sunrise and the orange the degree of sunset. Likewise, the gray line suggests the degree of moonrise and the navy, you guessed it, the degree of moonset.

The banner along the bottom of the mobile TPE application informs the user of the timing for the azimuths. I used this to great effect while hiking in Terelj National Park, Mongolia, during the summer. I saved a couple screenshots while I had wifi access, then wandered about the wilderness with a handheld compass. The gathered information helped me find an excellent vantage point where I could set up camp and wait for sunset. As a result, I was able to capture an excellent sunset along the mountain line. You can find TPE for Android, iOS, and desktop use at www.photoephemeris.com, as well as a more in-depth tutorial than what has been published here.

32


33

TINGSVELDT

[ PIK ] PHOTOGRAPHERS IN KOREA | ISSUE 3 , DECEMBER 2013


lens filters Relja Kojic relja@photographersinkorea.com

Take filter, screw it in, take a photo and review it. If you like the effect, keep the filter on. It really all does boil down to this simple process. In the age of instant photo review, filters are easier to use than ever before! Of course, choosing which filter you want to use is the most difficult part considering the vast array that are available to the consumer these days. But it’s all made a little simpler when you break them down into discreet categories. These are: protective, ND, polarizing, and special effect filters.

on an extremely bright day, reduce the shutter speed to allow for movement blurring, and reduce the power of the sun on a subject you are trying to light with flashes during the day.

try it out. Or at least research its effects online.

If you’re looking for the best image quality you can get from your camera and lens, don’t skimp on the filters Polarizing filters are a landscape pho- when it comes time to buy them. The tographer’s best friend. They’re used last thing you need in front of that to remove reflections and darken new $1800 lens is a filter that blurs Protective filters are as the name sugskies to create more dramatic shots. the details and flares all the time. gests, filters that protect the front However, I’ve seen polarizing filters More expensive filters don’t only proglass element of a lens. I also tend to also used in a studio setting to re- vide a better final image quality. Like include UV filters in this category as move glare and reflection from a sub- more expensive lenses, they’re typiwell considering that UV light isn’t as ject during anything from a portrait cally built better as well. Additionalbig an issue for digital as it is for film. ly, the top range filters usually have shoot to product photography. a company’s best coatings applied ND or Neutral Density filters are Special effect filters. There’s a ton of to make them easier to clean. Typitinted glasses that reduce the amount them. My best advice here is that if cally, I’ve never truly seen a massive of light entering a lens. The typical you’re interested, do your best to get optical difference between brands applications of an ND filter are to alyour hands on one at the store and when it comes to filters in the same low the use a shallow depth of field 34


35

price bracket. But I tend to lean towards Hoya and B+W as my personal choice. When it all comes down to it, when you’re looking to buy a filter, the Internet is your best friend. Since filters are one of the cheaper accessories that you can apply to your camera, there are a TON of reviews online. If you’re unsure as to what kind of filters exist then I recommend checking out a big box dealer like B&H, which has a vast selection of filters to browse and check out. Heck, even I am discovering new types of filters added every few months.

[ PIK ] PHOTOGRAPHERS IN KOREA | ISSUE 3 , DECEMBER 2013


36


37

[ PIK ] PHOTOGRAPHERS IN KOREA | ISSUE 3 , DECEMBER 2013


2013 Adopt a Child for Christmas Help Gwangju’s underprivileged children enjoy a visit from Santa. Volunteers will be given an orphan’s name for whom they will purchase a specified gift, roughly between 20 and 30 thousand won. The gift will be given to the child around Christmas time.

For more details visit : “Adopt a Child for Christmas” – Gwangju page on Facebook. 38

PIK December 2013  

Photographers in Korea. Issue #3 December 2013.

Advertisement