Sunday, June 3, 2012

Korea Photo Dump #1

Yea...that was a long week, I know. Strangely enough, it's kinda hard to keep up on an adventure blog when you don't have any adventures to go on. Who knew, right? Sometimes you just don't have much to say.

That's been me for the past month; I've taken a back seat on writing and photography. It's a well needed break...where you just indulge yourself on all the movies and books you've been depriving yourself of for the last year and a half. It's nice to enjoy other people's work for a while. For me, it helps me get the creative gears turning. It allows me to sort the slew of ideas in my head and see which ones really stand out. Eventually, a story or an image or two will come clawing its way out of the void...refusing to be silent any longer.

Got carried away with that metaphor, I know. It's been a while, and I'm taking it out on my journal and AOTOS. How bout I just give you some pictures from Korea to make up for it. We'll call it even :)

A little history: I had about 10,000 pictures or so that I sorted through. From there, I edited about 500 of the good ones. These photos stood out to me and told a story. They have been helping me bring some closure to the 1st year of Korea, and I hope you enjoy some of these unreleased images. I've been hoarding them for way too long.

I'll be releasing 2 images per day for the next week or two (or whenever I get tired of talking about my pictures), with some stories behind the image. Hope you enjoy!


This picture I must credit my good friend's daughter and her adorable stuffed lamb that she carries around just about everywhere. We were taking pictures of mothers for a project that my friend put together, and we were in this building overlooking a neighborhood in Seoul. They had a balcony facing the afternoon sun and, 15 stories above the city, the light was much more harsh and seemed to fight its way through the window shades. The minute my friend's daughter got distracted and left her lamb behind, I had a little practice shoot with the harsh light. I dropped the ISO down to about 200 and, sniping with my 70-200L lens, played with the light and all the different shades of white.


One of the distinct advantages of the DSLR age is the sheer amount of photos you can take in one sitting, and all the experimentation you can do. I can't tell you how many times a shot just turned out perfect because I missed my intended shot and got something much more dynamic and vivid. This one here is a perfect case of that.

The man on stage is a K-Pop star known as Rain. Like all men in Korea, he had to start his mandatory 2 year service in the military. Before he joined, however, his entertainment company closed down an entire block in the middle of Gangnam, Seoul and had a free concert for all his adoring fans. People all around the world flew in to see him, and this was one of the most lively concerts I've ever attended. I also was the only single, foreign guy in the bunch. Apparently Rain is the equivalent of Michael Jackson and Justin Bieber. Think of those audiences, and you can see how I was out of place. Still a cool concert, though.

In this shot, I took advantage of my position in the audience. I was pushed against the rail, which let me elevate myself just a little bit. I had my 70-200L again, and this time I was just shooting blindly at about 80mm. I was aiming for Rain, but my autofocus was struggling because of the lights pointed at the audience and the high ISO. In this case, it created a completely different picture. I got all the camera phones and glow sticks, drawing attention to who the concert was really about: the fans.

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Tune in tomorrow for another couple photos from Korea! I'll probably throw in some Cambodia and Japan pictures as well. See you then!

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