(A.g.’s Note: Today we have Clifton Barker chatting down with his friend and award winning photographer, Tavepong Pratoomwong from Thailand. Have a laugh and enjoy this one! Interview by Clifton Barker. All photos are by Tavepong Pratoomwong.)
Over the last year, the Thai street photography scene has been dominated by one man; Tavepong Pratoomwong. Besides being really clever with his compositions and somehow seemingly invisible—he has the cutest daughter you’ve ever seen. Certified. Recently TP received the high honor of the EyeEM award for Street Photographer of the Year 2014 and won 1st place at the Miami Street Festival. Besides all that, he’s just a cool dude that I really wanted to ask some absurd questions. Being mannerly, he obliged.
CB: How long did you have to wait by the Indian guy for the monkeys to start screwing?
I just finished a book called “10% happier”, which preached the benefits of meditation and mindfulness in everyday life.
There is a lot of pain and anxiety from everyday life, and one of the main causes of that is longing for something. Wanting something that we don’t have. By focusing too much on the future and the past.
It is that time of the year again— to make resolutions for the new year.
In 2014, I wrote a post, “40 Street Photography Resolutions Ideas for 2014” and I also wrote a post titled: “15 Street Photography Assignments to Re-Energize and Re-Inspire You” (inspired by the book: “The Photographer’s Playbook: 307 Assignments and Ideas”).
Below are some personal New Year’s Resolutions I am going to make for myself in 2015. I will probably break some of them, but will try my best to stick to them. This is advice I will give to myself— and feel free to pick any of these ideas for yourself (or modify them as you see fit). This list is inspired mostly by Nassim Taleb’s New Years Resolutions for 2015. Here are my street photography resolutions for 2015:
- Don’t buy any photo books I don’t plan on re-reading.
Buy at least 1 photo book a month (and get to really know it).
Give at least 1 in-depth comment/feedback/critique (once a week) to a street photographer who doesn’t get any favorites, comments, or feedback on his/her photos.
Try to meet a lonely photographer once a month for a coffee (with no expectation of “networking” or “gain” on my end)
Don’t go a single day without taking a photograph (smartphone is fine).
Don’t own more than 1 type of camera (only own 1 35mm camera, 1 medium-format, 1 digital). If I accrue more than one of each type of camera, either give away to friend or sell.
Walk for at least 15 minutes everyday to make photos (I’m becoming a fat and lazy car-dependent American).
Focus on education and creating value (not money, fame, or external recognition). Engaging the street photography community more and always try to help.
Make my photographs more personal.
Have at least 1 exhibition of my photos (and also curate at least 1 group exhibition).
Teach at least 1 free workshop for charity (once a year).
What are some New Years’ Resolutions that you have for yourself when it comes to your photography? Share them in the comments below!
Hey streettogs, to continue with my “Ask Eric Kim” series (any questions you had about street photography, business, marketing, social media, etc.) I put a question out on Facebook regarding what questions you had (so I could try my best to help out and offer some ideas):
Kai Kienzle asked the following:
“How [do you] discover interesting scenes in your familiar (thus boring) home city?”
Thank you to Fujifilm Vietnam and Gin Tran for putting together this feature of me shooting street photography in Saigon this summer. I hope the tips I share in this video can help you when it comes to traveling and shooting street photography. I also give some tips when it comes to shooting with the Fujifilm XT-1 with the 27mm f/2.8 lens (read my review here) and the Fujifilm x100s (read my review here). You can also read my new review of the Fujifilm x100T on the blog here.
If you are curious what it like shooting street photography in Vietnam, check out my “Saigon Diary” series below:
- Saigon Diary #1: First day in Saigon
- Saigon Diary #2: Learning Vietnamese, Seeing Common Threads, and Triangles
- Saigon Diary #3: Motorbikes, Vietnamese Coffee, and Night Shooting
- Saigon Diary #4: Leading Lines, Golden Triangle Composition, and Working the Scene
- Saigon Diary #5: Travels to Bien Hoa, Learning Vietnamese, and Coffee Culture
- Saigon Diary #6: Trip to Pulau Bidong, Switching to Black & White, Thoughts on Digital
- Saigon Diary #7: Trip to Hanoi, Now in Seoul