AKA: William George
Background Illustrations provided by: http://edison.rutgers.edu/
shot44 on Flickr.
For the first four months of my time in Japan, I would pass through this parking lot on my way to the PC Cafe to get my weekly internetting done. I got internet at home at the same time I got a bicycle. I would still pass though this parking lot, just on my way to getting lost somewhere. Shot with an Instax Mini. Scan of a print.

shot44 on Flickr.

For the first four months of my time in Japan, I would pass through this parking lot on my way to the PC Cafe to get my weekly internetting done. I got internet at home at the same time I got a bicycle. I would still pass though this parking lot, just on my way to getting lost somewhere.

Shot with an Instax Mini. Scan of a print.

'Nudder Day, 'Nudder Dollar

‘Nudder Day, ‘Nudder Dollar

the room

Tomorrow will begin with a small cup of coffee. A small cup is all I can handle these days thanks to the unwelcome movement of my intestines out of their proper spot a year ago. Assuming dinner moves on its way to the ocean in a timely manner, a bit of breakfast as I surf the web. With an hour or two before I need to leave for work, I go through what teaching materials I have on hand in order to…

View On WordPress

Fur Suit Riot on Flickr.
This is another one of those images where I feel that any cleaning will ruin it. Olympus Pen EE2. It’s been a year and one week since I finished my job in Japan. All that was left for me to do after that was enjoying my final April there before returning home to find out what went wrong with my insides. If things had worked out better for me in the end, I probably would have left earlier. But my boss, who had asked me to stay until May, suddenly told me my replacement would be there on April first. This threw everything into disarray. Not only had I been budgeting for May (leaving me short on money), may lease required me to give them a month’s notice for cancellation or they’d take the month’s rent out of my account whether I was there or not. So I decided to stay and try my best to memorize Miyakonojo as best I could before it became nothing but some old photos. I feel the statute of limitations on posting the images I took on the job there has passed now and I will be poking around in those archives for images to post up in the next few weeks. The above was a coworker who had been forced into the fur mascot costume to wave at children while I fended off teenaged boys who wanted to knock the head off for the lulz.

Fur Suit Riot on Flickr.

This is another one of those images where I feel that any cleaning will ruin it. Olympus Pen EE2.

It’s been a year and one week since I finished my job in Japan. All that was left for me to do after that was enjoying my final April there before returning home to find out what went wrong with my insides. If things had worked out better for me in the end, I probably would have left earlier. But my boss, who had asked me to stay until May, suddenly told me my replacement would be there on April first. This threw everything into disarray. Not only had I been budgeting for May (leaving me short on money), may lease required me to give them a month’s notice for cancellation or they’d take the month’s rent out of my account whether I was there or not. So I decided to stay and try my best to memorize Miyakonojo as best I could before it became nothing but some old photos.

I feel the statute of limitations on posting the images I took on the job there has passed now and I will be poking around in those archives for images to post up in the next few weeks. The above was a coworker who had been forced into the fur mascot costume to wave at children while I fended off teenaged boys who wanted to knock the head off for the lulz.

Laughs Out Loud on Flickr.
My process. Step by step. Step one: Put on headphones and crank up the music. Crank down the music when I remember that I’m old and prone to rocking-out-related injuries. Step two: Open FastStone image viewer. You may use whatever image-viewing program you enjoy and should not take this as a recommendation even though it reads pretty much every file format out there including the douchebaggy proprietary RAW formats camera manufacturers still make for some reason. Step three: Go through every single photo for the two hundredth time, looking for an image I have yet to feature. Give images I’ve skipped another look. The subject might suck, but the background might not. That’s why this image got to you today. She was missed because she was lost in the crowd shot that I took at Yanaka Ginza in Tokyo with my Olympus Pen E-p3. Now she is not.  Step four: Crack open GIMP and fiddle with some basic adjustments until I find it acceptable. You may use whatever image manipulation program you enjoy and should not take this as a recommendation though it does pretty much everything you could want and since it’s free you don’t need to pirate it unlike certain very expensive image manipulation programs that shall remain nameless. Step five: Open up the copy of Word that came bundled with the computer, and think about what I want to say about the image and whatever else is on my mind at the time. Correct all of the typos. Step six: Do all of the boring uploading/ linking/ tagging internet stuff. Steps seven through one hundred: Edit and re-edit the post every hour because spellcheck is not a replacement for an editor and can’t tell you when you’re writing correctly-spelled nonsense. Step one hundred and one: Refresh repeatedly for Likes until bedtime.

Laughs Out Loud on Flickr.

My process. Step by step.

Step one: Put on headphones and crank up the music. Crank down the music when I remember that I’m old and prone to rocking-out-related injuries.

Step two: Open FastStone image viewer. You may use whatever image-viewing program you enjoy and should not take this as a recommendation even though it reads pretty much every file format out there including the douchebaggy proprietary RAW formats camera manufacturers still make for some reason.

Step three: Go through every single photo for the two hundredth time, looking for an image I have yet to feature. Give images I’ve skipped another look. The subject might suck, but the background might not. That’s why this image got to you today. She was missed because she was lost in the crowd shot that I took at Yanaka Ginza in Tokyo with my Olympus Pen E-p3. Now she is not.

Step four: Crack open GIMP and fiddle with some basic adjustments until I find it acceptable. You may use whatever image manipulation program you enjoy and should not take this as a recommendation though it does pretty much everything you could want and since it’s free you don’t need to pirate it unlike certain very expensive image manipulation programs that shall remain nameless.

Step five: Open up the copy of Word that came bundled with the computer, and think about what I want to say about the image and whatever else is on my mind at the time. Correct all of the typos.

Step six: Do all of the boring uploading/ linking/ tagging internet stuff.

Steps seven through one hundred: Edit and re-edit the post every hour because spellcheck is not a replacement for an editor and can’t tell you when you’re writing correctly-spelled nonsense.

Step one hundred and one: Refresh repeatedly for Likes until bedtime.

abstfo on Flickr.
Eastern shore, Nova Scotia. Pentax KX.  This actually is properly exposed. The fog really does get that thick on Nova Scotia’s eastern shore. The crappy scanning by the developer just adds to the abstract look. I don’t think the image would be as nearly as interesting if the scan was laser sharp though I could be wrong. You know, I don’t know why people hate film grain. That’s like saying you hate having spaceships in Star Trek, or bad writing in Star Wars. I can understand it from people who have only ever used the over-saturated sharpness of the digital camera. Film grain looks a lot like sensor noise from the right angle. But that remaining handful of madmen who still use film? Might as well switch to digital because that’s what you really want.

abstfo on Flickr.

Eastern shore, Nova Scotia. Pentax KX.

This actually is properly exposed. The fog really does get that thick on Nova Scotia’s eastern shore. The crappy scanning by the developer just adds to the abstract look. I don’t think the image would be as nearly as interesting if the scan was laser sharp though I could be wrong.

You know, I don’t know why people hate film grain. That’s like saying you hate having spaceships in Star Trek, or bad writing in Star Wars. I can understand it from people who have only ever used the over-saturated sharpness of the digital camera. Film grain looks a lot like sensor noise from the right angle. But that remaining handful of madmen who still use film? Might as well switch to digital because that’s what you really want.

Brelly on Flickr.
One of my new students showing off her stylish umbrella before heading out. Pentax KX. Scan of a print. I’m going to have to look in other parts of Gunsan, but film seems limited to Fujicolor C200 and the vastly over-priced Instax line. In limited amounts. Having to wait a week for my developing to be sent off to Seoul isn’t too bad given how much cheaper it is compared to Canada. Not compared to Japan though. Japan is half of what it costs in Korea. A third of Canada. It’s almost like they want me to buy a new DSLR or something. Which, when I do so, will probably be a Pentax to go with my collection of lenses.

Brelly on Flickr.

One of my new students showing off her stylish umbrella before heading out. Pentax KX. Scan of a print.

I’m going to have to look in other parts of Gunsan, but film seems limited to Fujicolor C200 and the vastly over-priced Instax line. In limited amounts. Having to wait a week for my developing to be sent off to Seoul isn’t too bad given how much cheaper it is compared to Canada.

Not compared to Japan though. Japan is half of what it costs in Korea. A third of Canada. It’s almost like they want me to buy a new DSLR or something. Which, when I do so, will probably be a Pentax to go with my collection of lenses.

selfie club on Flickr.
Here’s some color to break up my sea of grey. Some selfies being taken with Glico-Man in Osaka. Olympus Pen E-P3. Meanwhile, here in Gunsan, I keep getting these bright ideas to visit old haunts like Seoul or Cheonan just to see what has changed. Then I keep looking at my bank account and doing some math about how long I can make that last and in the end the idea gets pushed to the back burner.
The same thing happens when the tasty, tasty odor of grilled meat wafts through my windows from the BBQ restaurant district my apartment has been cruelly placed in the middle of. Tasty, tasty grilled meat on the back burner…

selfie club on Flickr.

Here’s some color to break up my sea of grey. Some selfies being taken with Glico-Man in Osaka. Olympus Pen E-P3.

Meanwhile, here in Gunsan, I keep getting these bright ideas to visit old haunts like Seoul or Cheonan just to see what has changed. Then I keep looking at my bank account and doing some math about how long I can make that last and in the end the idea gets pushed to the back burner.

The same thing happens when the tasty, tasty odor of grilled meat wafts through my windows from the BBQ restaurant district my apartment has been cruelly placed in the middle of.

Tasty, tasty grilled meat on the back burner…

Mr. Oblivious on Flickr.
Young fellow ignoring the sights at Shibuya in favor of his stupid smartphone. Canon 550D/t2i/Kiss X4. There is one fellow I follow on Flickr who is pretty good at capturing interesting images of people with their nose stuck in their phones but I’ve never been able to make it work to my satisfaction. Of course, he seems more willing to just stick his camera wherever he wants than I am (Curse my polite Canadian upbringing!) so that probably explains why he gets the shot more often than I do. Though it could be because I keep trying to tell a story instead of just grabbing a moment and letting it make its own story. Or maybe I just need to start swinging my camera from its strap or something. I really should head out tonight and try to get some practice in, but damn, that wind is cold…

Mr. Oblivious on Flickr.

Young fellow ignoring the sights at Shibuya in favor of his stupid smartphone. Canon 550D/t2i/Kiss X4.

There is one fellow I follow on Flickr who is pretty good at capturing interesting images of people with their nose stuck in their phones but I’ve never been able to make it work to my satisfaction. Of course, he seems more willing to just stick his camera wherever he wants than I am (Curse my polite Canadian upbringing!) so that probably explains why he gets the shot more often than I do. Though it could be because I keep trying to tell a story instead of just grabbing a moment and letting it make its own story. Or maybe I just need to start swinging my camera from its strap or something.

I really should head out tonight and try to get some practice in, but damn, that wind is cold…

Late Night Tomfoolery on Flickr.
I don’t have a single karaoke photo that’s in focus. In-focus would mean that it wasn’t a very good time at karaoke so this is as it should be. Pentax MX? This is an old friend from Japan showing me that she’d be the best model a photographer could have. I never thought to ask her to do so for many reasons. Not having the gear and assistants needed to make it worth everyone’s time being one of the main ones. Even simple glamour shots need a fair bit of work which is why I’m a documenter instead of an image constructor.
Not that I would have a model leaning on a car in a short skirt or something. I’d probably just have them hanging out in front of something like a shop or fishing boat in order to get a human aspect to the subject. It may seem like a waste of a model to some, but everyone tries to copy fashion magazines. Boring. But pointing into a crowd and hoping you capture strangers doing something interesting is more miss than hit. At least for me. I like to think that having a willing model could help you get a nice balance between both approaches. Maybe one day.

Late Night Tomfoolery on Flickr.

I don’t have a single karaoke photo that’s in focus. In-focus would mean that it wasn’t a very good time at karaoke so this is as it should be. Pentax MX?

This is an old friend from Japan showing me that she’d be the best model a photographer could have. I never thought to ask her to do so for many reasons. Not having the gear and assistants needed to make it worth everyone’s time being one of the main ones. Even simple glamour shots need a fair bit of work which is why I’m a documenter instead of an image constructor.

Not that I would have a model leaning on a car in a short skirt or something. I’d probably just have them hanging out in front of something like a shop or fishing boat in order to get a human aspect to the subject. It may seem like a waste of a model to some, but everyone tries to copy fashion magazines. Boring. But pointing into a crowd and hoping you capture strangers doing something interesting is more miss than hit. At least for me.

I like to think that having a willing model could help you get a nice balance between both approaches. Maybe one day.

the lady and the bear on Flickr.
I think this was at an event featuring some Tarento in Kagoshima. Shot with a Pentax MX. You who care to click all the way through to the original image may notice that it’s slightly smaller than my usual 1400 pixel wide images. This is because I grabbed this photo from a folder called “Done Shots”. That’s where I dump images that have been uploaded to various blogs and sites like Flickr. It’s also where a lot of my images that were lost in The Great Crash of 2013 can be found. Just in reduced size. While this one is big enough that I could probably get a decent print out of it, most of the others aren’t. And while those are big enough for blogging purposes, the small size means it’s impossible for me to work on them anymore. They are at the end of their use as images. I cannot crop them down or do some ‘shopping with them without rendering them an illegible mess. That is tragic to me. Like a friend that’s no longer alive.
Say it with me now: "Make multiple backups!"

the lady and the bear on Flickr.

I think this was at an event featuring some Tarento in Kagoshima. Shot with a Pentax MX.

You who care to click all the way through to the original image may notice that it’s slightly smaller than my usual 1400 pixel wide images. This is because I grabbed this photo from a folder called “Done Shots”. That’s where I dump images that have been uploaded to various blogs and sites like Flickr. It’s also where a lot of my images that were lost in The Great Crash of 2013 can be found. Just in reduced size.

While this one is big enough that I could probably get a decent print out of it, most of the others aren’t. And while those are big enough for blogging purposes, the small size means it’s impossible for me to work on them anymore. They are at the end of their use as images. I cannot crop them down or do some ‘shopping with them without rendering them an illegible mess. That is tragic to me. Like a friend that’s no longer alive.

Say it with me now: "Make multiple backups!"

One Sunday in Osaka on Flickr.
Fellow tourists at Doutonbori in Osaka. Shot with an Olympus Pen E-P3. Yesterday I sent my first film of this jaunt to Korea off to be developed. The local shop in the LotteMart only does digital prints like I was expecting and they had to mail it off to Seoul. My guess is that they send it to Photopia since they seem to be the only place that does it now… Though there may be something I’m missing on that page that says “No film!” I did find a shop up the street with a big yellow Kodak sign on the wall. However there are no posted hours. Just a phone number which suggests to me a business that’s open when the owner feels like coming in. I’ll have to try and catch them some day to see if they can save me from being a fool with an antique.

One Sunday in Osaka on Flickr.

Fellow tourists at Doutonbori in Osaka. Shot with an Olympus Pen E-P3.

Yesterday I sent my first film of this jaunt to Korea off to be developed. The local shop in the LotteMart only does digital prints like I was expecting and they had to mail it off to Seoul. My guess is that they send it to Photopia since they seem to be the only place that does it now… Though there may be something I’m missing on that page that says “No film!” I did find a shop up the street with a big yellow Kodak sign on the wall. However there are no posted hours. Just a phone number which suggests to me a business that’s open when the owner feels like coming in.

I’ll have to try and catch them some day to see if they can save me from being a fool with an antique.

Showtime on Flickr.
Moves being busted in Miyazaki. Olympus Pen E-P3. I’ve yet to come across anything like this in Gunsan. I mean, sure, I’ve been in Korea again for a total of a week. I can’t expect to find much in such a short time. Poking around what little information is available online about the place suggests that I’m living well south of the heart of the city so once I’m more mobile (Say, after buying a bike) I’ll put in more effort to get up there and see what’s up. I hiked about six kilometers around the area today and so far I’ve discovered the following: To the south of me are farms. To the east are seas of skyscraper apartment complexes. To the west is a section of town that looks like it boomed in the 90s before falling into a slow decay. I ran across a couple of very aggressive beggars there who wouldn’t take “No” for an answer. They did accept “Fuck off”, however. They didn’t push it past that which goes to show that being generally larger than the locals has its advantages. Regardless I have no plans to go back into that neighborhood. Just the remaining 95% of the place to go.

Showtime on Flickr.

Moves being busted in Miyazaki. Olympus Pen E-P3.

I’ve yet to come across anything like this in Gunsan. I mean, sure, I’ve been in Korea again for a total of a week. I can’t expect to find much in such a short time. Poking around what little information is available online about the place suggests that I’m living well south of the heart of the city so once I’m more mobile (Say, after buying a bike) I’ll put in more effort to get up there and see what’s up.

I hiked about six kilometers around the area today and so far I’ve discovered the following: To the south of me are farms. To the east are seas of skyscraper apartment complexes. To the west is a section of town that looks like it boomed in the 90s before falling into a slow decay. I ran across a couple of very aggressive beggars there who wouldn’t take “No” for an answer. They did accept “Fuck off”, however. They didn’t push it past that which goes to show that being generally larger than the locals has its advantages. Regardless I have no plans to go back into that neighborhood.

Just the remaining 95% of the place to go.

mkjnights on Flickr.
Summer festival crowds in Miyakonojo. Shot with a Canon 550D or whatever it was marketed as in your area. I’m probably weeks away from being able to post up interesting photos of Gunsan so it’s more of my Japanese images for you for the next while. It might even be closer a month or two since I’m on a pretty tight budget and I haven’t been able to find a place that does developing aside from a kiosk in the local Lottemart. Teach me to fly with the film camera instead of the digital because I felt my big chrome brick would be too expensive to have shipped later on. I don’t look forward to having the “It’s a C-41 film, so it’s okay to feed into your machine even if you haven’t seen the brand before. Just develop it.”, conversation in Korean.

mkjnights on Flickr.

Summer festival crowds in Miyakonojo. Shot with a Canon 550D or whatever it was marketed as in your area.

I’m probably weeks away from being able to post up interesting photos of Gunsan so it’s more of my Japanese images for you for the next while. It might even be closer a month or two since I’m on a pretty tight budget and I haven’t been able to find a place that does developing aside from a kiosk in the local Lottemart. Teach me to fly with the film camera instead of the digital because I felt my big chrome brick would be too expensive to have shipped later on.

I don’t look forward to having the “It’s a C-41 film, so it’s okay to feed into your machine even if you haven’t seen the brand before. Just develop it.”, conversation in Korean.