Cyberpunk & Neon-Noir
Japan, Hong Kong, and South Korea, three perfect countries for the style of Cyberpunk and Neon-Noir. I have visited Hong Kong twice in a year, Japan once and I live in South Korea. Whilst Hong Kong and Japan are more popular countries for the style, South Korea remains relatively untouched so my work in the streets of Seoul & Incheon has felt more exciting in a bid to find those perfect spots for neon drenched streets. Recently, attention has been piqued to my photos with my shot I titled Incheon Rain, (picture 1 of the night shots) which won Reddit's I Took a Photo photo of the year, 2017.
This style is all around where I live. Even looking out of my apartment window as I write this piece there is a road stretched out below vertically stacked with neon signs advertising clubs, food, cafés and more grimily, 'massage' rooms; in between each side of the street a vein of cars packed bumper to bumper as far as I can see. My town was what lead me to this style really. On my first few days I walked around, the run-down buildings with black mould hanging around the roof didn't inspire much of an inspiration for travel photography of which I had started to gain a following for. So I wandered around for new inspiration, both the streets and the Internet. I just kept exploring and eventually found myself seeing my town in a whole new light, the grime became ideal, the mould became part of the aesthetic and the tangled mass of cables overhead were building a perfect scene for cyberpunk and neon-noir. That's the great thing about photography, you start to look at things differently, you explore way more and if you're lucky enough you might get yourself one or two great shots after a night of walking aimlessly around the back-alleys.
Here's another example, on the night I took Incheon Rain, it was a Saturday in November and starting to get colder. It had been the heaviest rains since the summer's monsoon season but that was great news for me. South Korea gets very little rain outside of its monsoon season, (compared to back home in England) so I wanted to take this lucky opportunity to try and get some shots. It would have been a lot nicer to stay inside that evening but going out has been one of the best decisions I've made for my photography.
Plans for this year include visiting Shanghai for the first time and to visit Tokyo again, and of course to keep shooting around Korea.