I’m a big fan of photography that freezes the beauty of landscape to be carried away and held forever, but I am also very interested in photos of people, as the world is full of diversity and culture; a place at times can be better understood through the people that inhabit it. This is why I did the People and Streets tour.
I did this tour for various reasons; as only having been in Japan for just under a week and for the first time ever, it would give me the opportunity to walk around with someone who knew the streets like the back of their hand. I would be in the presence of a professional photographer who would share with me their wisdom. I wanted to soak it up like a sponge and better understand my camera. I also did it to learn how to not invade the privacy of people when photographing on the street. I believe this is vital to get the most out of your shots and allow those in them to remain natural and go about their everyday lives.
As I waited for the 3pm start at Harajuku Station, I watched wave after wave of people come flooding by, waves of individuality and freedom of expression, one of the things I love about Japan. I love the fashion in Tokyo and the sheer amount of color that you can see in just one small crowd that passes by, while businessmen, dressed in immaculate suits, looked as if everything in their lives is done to perfection. It is safe to say that I could people watch in Tokyo all day!
Axel, my teacher, then arrived and what happened next I will never forget; I will be forever grateful for his friendliness and help. We walked through the streets of Tokyo, a melting pot of creativity, color and uniqueness, while he gave me a street photography education and more tips than I could have possibly dreamed of.
It started off simple - showing me how to better hold my camera, how to play with exposure, and so on. Then it progressed to giving me an insight into how to think like a photographer, how to make a photo tell a story, how to use lines in the background to draw attention to the subject and make the image more powerful, where to place someone in your desired background, sneaky tips on how to go unnoticed, how to wait for the right moment and so, so much more.
He also dedicated himself into giving me more confidence as a photographer. On a few occasions I was made to ask people if I could take a picture of them after he gave me tips on how to approach them. He then taught me how to take time with those that are willing to be photographed, and to make the most of the situation with different expressions and poses. I would not have done this before but now I have come away with more confidence and experience thanks to him.
Axel had such a passion for photography and made my tour the most fun and beneficial thing I have done in a long time. He grew my passion for photography inside me even further and has given me such a taste for more. I walked away with more knowledge of my camera and some photos I am hugely pleased of.
I thoroughly recommend this tour to anyone wishing to improve their street photography and walk through some brilliant spots in Tokyo. The tour is specifically done on a Sunday due to the hustle and bustle of the day, making it perfect time to capture the people of Tokyo.
The price for this tour was ¥8000 and to me was easily worth every single yen! There are other tours you can do such as Tradition and Modernity and Tokyo by Night. You can find more information on these tours on the JapanTravel Tours website.
The pictures I have uploaded are some of my favorite ones from the tour, I had too many to upload them all! They are all also raw images with no editing being done to them, showing the fantastic results achieved throughout the tour.
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I graduated from University of Hertfordshire in the UK in 2014, with a 2:1 in Mass Communications. I have since worked in China for a Media and PR Company as a writer and photographer and also as a foreign editor for a English website for the expatriate community in Guangzhou. I am a big fan of the East in many ways, and have always dreamed of coming to Japan. I look forward to exploring this beautiful and unique country over the years to come!