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Tampa Friends, Tokyo Tomadachi, Republished Book from 1991

Saturday, October 27th, 2012

Christopher Ruff, 1991, Tampa, Florida from the Book Tampa Friends, Tokyo Tomodachi

This the last of my archiving projects for a little while.  It all started with the finding of my color analog prints that I made after hurricane Andrew and published on the 20th anniversary of that terrible storm.  It led me to redux my Broken Windows book.  Now I decided to take a new look at the project that I completed before Broken Window, and was only published as an artist’s proof.  I have decided to call it Tampa Friends, Tokyo Tomodachi (tomodachi means friends).

These images were all taken in 1991 with a Nikon FG mostly with a heavy flash.  I was photographing what was around me, my friends.  I spent so much time with all of them that I wanted to capture those moments.  It was my way or participating in life as both an observer and participant.

The book is split into two halves.  The first half is filled with my Tampa family of Jahn, Christopher, and Elizabeth.  We spent all of our free time together exploring life and the land around Tampa.  The second half of the book comes from two different trips to Tokyo and the time I spent with Tetsuya, Yoshinori, and Masami.  The two halves show a version of my life as it was in 1991.  A time when my friends were my family.

By 1991, I rediscovered my love of photography after having a passion ignited in my soul from cinema.  I wanted to go one step further and enrolled in a photography class.  A whole new world opened up before me.  I learned about photographers I never knew before.  I was eager to discuss the deeper meanings of photography, and that passion that was reignited by my teacher Beth Shields never has diminished.

I wanted to look at these old photographs of mine to see where I have been as an artist.  I wanted to know if the images that I were producing in my youth were still valid to my critical eye 20 years later.  The answer, for the most part, is yes.  It has been a process of learning and self discovery with my camera as my means of expression.

The PDF file can be downloaded here for free. Tampa Friends Tokyo Tomodachi PDF

the book can also be purchased online via Blurb.

 

Lastly I want to give a extra special shout out of love to all those whose images are contained within the book Tampa Friends, Tokyo Tomodachi.  All of you made my time as a young man some of the most interesting and heartfelt years of my life.

Flowerhood and Rolling Solo

Tuesday, June 7th, 2011

I saw two sides of flowership today in my walk back to the station in Chiba.  One was a a single budding flower.  It was pushing through between a stone wall and an iron fence.  It contrasted so nicely with the cool gray stone on this overcast day.

The other was a group of tiny purple flowers.  They had all budded and were growing in the tight space between a wall and sidewalk.  There were about half a meter off the main street I was walking on, but there flowerhood caught my eye.  They were all working together in a tight space.

I know that it takes a community to care for each other, just as these flowers were.  They might not be holding hands, but I’m sure their roots are all intertwined under the earth.  Search out those connection to each other.  Those connections that are so vital to humans well being.

Don’t be afraid to show a little flowership, or flowerhood to each other.

Violet Flowerhood in Ichikawa

Solo Out of the Wall

One Two Tokyo

Sunday, September 5th, 2010

I was fortunate to have a bit of family in Tokyo the other day.  I don’t get to play tour guide to my adopted city often so I always look forward to showing people my focus on the town.

Zig Zag Grease

Grinning Fan

Sandaled Reflections

Sex Fuck Whale

Yanaka GInza Square

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