Tokyo Calling

We chat to the incredibly talented Australian photographer, Alex Knight, who brings the streets of Tokyo to life. 

North: How long have you been living in Japan? What inspired you to move there?

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Alex: I moved here about six years ago after taking a trip around the world and deciding I needed to change things up from what I was doing.  So I sold my company, packed my stuff and dived in.

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North: What’s the best thing about living in Japan?

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Alex: There is a lot to love about Japan: the culture, safety on the streets, the food, of course, but for me, it has been the inspiration and opportunity to explore more creative projects.

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North: How did you get into photography?

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Alex: I studied it in highschool and always had an interest, but it wasn’t till I moved here, and bought a decent camera to capture my travels that I really fell in love with the art form.

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North: What inspires your current work?

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Alex: Most of my new work takes its inspiration from sci-fi and cyberpunk genres.  Anything futuristic. Bright lights, neon sign and big screens around the city.  Along that note as well, trying to contrast that with the traditional Japanese vibe, which is commonly seen in various anime.

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North: If you could describe your photographic/artistic style in three words, what would it be?

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Alex: Colour, neon and surreal.

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North: Tell us about an interesting thing you experienced on your night walks.

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Alex: I was wandering around Shibuya one evening and came across a huge gathering of people, all dressed in white jumpsuits and plain white fox masks.  Everyone standing in a double file line.  I was super confused at first, only to realise they were shooting a music video for a J pop idol group in Shibuya crossing.  It was awesome to watch. 

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North: How would you describe the personality of Tokyo?

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Alex: ‘Work hard, play hard’ comes to mind.  Everyone puts in huge hours at work, especially the salarymen, and then drinks in bars and izakayas late into the night.

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Wake up next day, do it all again.

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North: What do you hope to capture and bring out in your work?

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Alex: I am not really interested in capturing the touristy travel shots of this city.  There are lots of others doing a great job of that already.  I hope to capture a darker, surreal side that not many see.

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Alex is an Australian UI/UX Designer living and working in Tokyo.  He loves exploring the endless city, trying to capture it in a different light than most people are used to. 

Check out more of Alex’s amazing work on his website (online print store) and Instagram

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