Dear NY Times Magazine

 

I recently read you Voyages issue Of the NYT Sunday Magazine.

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2015/09/23/magazine/the-voyages-issue.html#Tokyo

Most of the photo articles were excellent, though I think that Mr. Sugimoto was trying too hard to be artsy when he had a great story and should have run with it.  Sort of a reverse Marco Polo.  But the story that really bothered me was the one about Tokyo by Mr. Soth.  Which should have been titled “Hotel Room” or maybe, “Room Service.”   The thing about Voyages is the experience and locking yourself up in a hotel room and calling in room service is not experience. Which is sad because Tokyo is a city that begs to be experienced. In a way that was the point of “Lost In Translation.”

To show Mr. Soth a little of what he missed, well here’s some pics I’ve shot in Tokyo.

I was spending my own money, so I didn’t stay as fancy as the Park Hyatt. The View from my hotel room was rather prosaic, though the love hotel did have it’s romanticism.

DSC_2118

Perhaps that was good reason to leave the room. Tokyo has a lot of the unexpected.

DSC_2168

Such as little French cars.  It pays though to go off the beaten path and try to find perhaps the prosaic and unloved, well at least by it’s owners, photographers certainly love this little rusty locomotive.

DSC_2258

It may be the most photographed train in Japan.  Of course it’s not hard to find rust and steel in the industrial parts of Tokyo, far from the usual tourist traps.

DSC_2269

Still, even in the industrial area a grandfather can share with his grandson.

DSC_2284

On your way back, you can always enjoy the nightlife,

DSC_2342

or get up early and join the morning commute.

DSC_2369

You can visit markets not yet busy.

DSC_2374

Or watch a park being prepared for the day.

DSC_2393

Before taking a festival with great street food

DSC_2526

Guarded by stalwart giant guardians.

DSC_2577

And some not so giant.

DSC_2590

Before catching the evening commute.

DSC_2646

And daring the night again.

DSC_2726

And wandering the underground warrens of Tokyo Station.

DSC_2800

Before going out to play the obligatory video game.

DSC_3046

Before encountering raucous politics

DSC_3049

Perhaps it may be better to take a speedy journey.

DSC_3305

Seeing strange sights out the window

.DSC_3295

Before having a quiet drink in a sublime location.

DSC_3385

While I didn’t eat such exotic things as bug sushi, I did have a series of rather strange to the US hotel breakfasts before setting out to explore.

DSC_3585

Finding out that perhaps the culture was a bit loser to home, or at least the advertising was.

DSC_3641

One thing about being behind the camera is that you never have to feel as if you don’t belong there.

DSC_3775

Which can help if you are in a place where normally you would feel out of place.

DSC_4092

No matter how attractive the scenery.

DSC_4172

Though it’s still easy to find people in touch with tradition.

DSC_4175

Though the strange and exotic does have it’s charms.

DSC_4204

Still there’s always time for eats, even takiyoki, maybe especially takiyoki.

DSC_5887

Isn’t the point of the voyage, the experience?  If I want room service and pizza delivery, all I have to do is stay home.  Tokyo has nothing that should truly scare you and it’s a great place to shoot.  There’s always something to find, the unexpected the strange the new.  And it’s so easy to explore.  Why stay in your room?

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s