mickyatesAesthetics, Coursework, Critical Research Journal, Ideas, Impressionism, Infrared, Japan, Photography, SPWeek11, Street, Sustainable Prospects 3 Comments

I have been revisiting the work of Daido Moriyama and Antony Cairns. And Gary suggested I also look at Osamu James Nakagawa.

In my Work in Progress for this (Sustainable Prospects) Module, I am using Digital Negatives. Whilst the series is generally well received, and it is designed to create debate, I want to continue to develop the idea. A fellow student commented that the images are ‘too beautiful for the Genocide subject’. Another, ‘the aesthetic is inappropriate, it needs to be real’.

Gary commented that the imagery is rather too ‘pristine’.

My Oral Presentation takes note of Max Pinckers, Richard Mosse and Antony Cairns.

Cairns also creates negatives and then uses various manipulations on them, digital and physical. His work is intriguing, and obviously has bearing on my work.

But I do find the architectural images rather sterile, and lacking in humanity.

Antony Cairns, Osaka

I have had a long time fascination with the work of Daido Moriyama.

His Are Bure Boke style of shooting lends itself well to the spontaneity of the street.

Daido Moriyama, Tokyo, from Record

Occasionally I have attempted to emulate that style, though there is something about the ‘roughness’ of the resulting images which doesn’t always sit well with my usual work.

Perhaps it is more a mental block on my part than anything else, given I can be quite anal about precision in my photography.

James Nakagawa’s work is new to me.

He uses a blend of techniques, though perhaps a unifying aesthetic is the rich variation in the greys in his work. He also moves comfortably from landscape, to abstract and to portrait, using his aesthetic to bring the images together.

James Nakagawa, Eclipse 3, 2018.

Nakagawa’s work begs questions of etc audience, and encourages active participation in etc decoding process. In my OP, I note that I will be researching and experimenting with my own ‘negative’ images, including using film. I think Nakagawa’s work will be a useful baseline to consider.

Judy Glickman Lauder has just released a new book ‘Beyond the Shadows: The Holocaust and the Danish Exception’.

She uses infrared negatives to tell the story, creating beautiful, haunting images.

Judy Glickman Lauder, Holocaust, 2018.

She blends such images with ‘traditional’ black and white, especially when doing portraiture.

Another inspiration for my research.


It is Christmas Market time in Bath, and there is the usual range of photographic opportunities.

I thought I would experiment. So I shot hand held, one second exposures, to capture the bustle and the rain.

Comments on this work on social media range from ‘superb’ to ‘what a waste of a good camera’. Still, I think the images do capture the spirit of the market, in a thought provoking way.

A simple Black and White conversion brings Moriyama’s photography to mind.

And then I took the next step – converting the image to a Digital Negative.

Some audience decoding is required, although it is not immediately obvious that the image is a negative.

In my WIP, Jesse commented that one image, of a hand, wasn’t immediately obvious as a negative.

I think this could be a very fruitful line of visual research.

Additionally, I have been looking at Piezography, which claims to be the highest standard in black and white printing, using tens of thousands of greys, delivered via a broad range of different grey and black inks. Also very much worth exploring.


Antony Cairns. Available at http://www.antony-cairns.co.uk (Accessed 2/12/2018).

Glickman Lauder, Judy. 2018. Beyond the Shadows: The Holocaust and the Danish Exception. New York: Aperture.

Glickman Lauder, Judy. 2018. Available at http://judyglickmanlauder.com/holocaust/. (Accessed 2/12/2018).

Moriyama, Daido. 2017. Record. London: Thames & Hudson.

Osamu James Nakagawa. Available at https://jamesnakagawa.com/en/works/kai (Accessed 1/12/2018).

Piezography. Available at https://piezography.com/about/the-piezography-process/. (Accessed 2/12/2018).

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