Marian Margraf

After traveling through South Korea and Japan for almost two weeks, we were happy to finally arrive in Tokyo. If you ever traveled with a partner, you probably know that doing street photography isn‘t always the main priority when roaming the streets. This means that you often just cannot stop to wait for the right scene. Taking every slight possibility for a photograph counts, so observing and anticipating possible situations becomes even more important. 

On this particular day, we decided to visit Ginza and stroll through the various department stores and narrow streets. At first, the ongoing rain kept us from staying on the streets for too long. However, we soon realized there is only a limited time we spend in Tokyo, so we should not waste it indoors by looking at overpriced products. 

How this photograph came to be: My girlfriend and I walking arm in arm, I am holding an umbrella in my left hand, my X-T2 in my right hand. At first, the woman with the yellow coat passes us quickly and I take a few photographs while admiring her style. It only takes me a second to notice this young family in a distance, approaching us slowly. I do not know why but I suddenly just realize I have to take this opportunity and make this photograph. I signal my girlfriend to walk a little faster to keep up with the yellow-coat-woman. As the family moves closer, my heart almost skips a beat and I double-check my exposure settings, raise the camera and wait in anticipation for the right moment. It just “clicked”. This was exactly how I imagined the photograph to be. 

When I think back to this situation, I cannot fully describe how it felt making this photograph. I just had bought my first real camera (Fujifilm X-T2) a month before our trip so I was quite anxious to use it and have been practicing a lot beforehand to get accustomed to it. Right after I made the photograph, I knew it really paid off. When I look at it now, I immediately feel the same joy I felt back then and I think that the subjects in the photograph are conveying this joy to the viewer. Regardless of the weather, we were not discouraged to stay outside and enjoy it. 

I learned that there is always an opportunity around the corner, you just need to look for it.


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