Back Stories: The Dog

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Iksan, South Korea. Sometime in 2011.

In 2011 I switched almost entirely back to film. In that time I was starting to understand that gear wasn’t that important. I was starting to get over the idea of needing every camera I saw. For much of that year I carried around nothing but a Ricoh GR21. It spent most of its time on the seat of my car or around my neck.

At that time I was living in the small Korean town of Iksan in the Jeolla province. I moved back there this year. It is about an hour from Seoul by train.

One day, I was driving to the train station. It was something I did often. I would generally leave my car at the train station during the day while I went to Seoul. At a red light, I saw this dog coming around the corner of a building. It was dragging its broken chain behind it. I stopped the car and leaned out the window to take the photo. I was almost too fast as I had to wait for the dog to be better framed against the building. I liked its white coat against the grey of the wall.

I’m weird when it comes to photography and taking photos. I only took 5 or 6 photos the rest of the weekend in Seoul. I knew I had already taken the one I would remember.

Iksan, South Korea.

Sometime in 2011.

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As a side note, I generally steer people away from buying the Ricoh GR21. While it may be my favorite camera I have ever used it is also far too unreliable for its price. I had three that year all of which developed some type of serious problem. I now use the Ricoh GRD (original from 2006) with the 21mm adapter instead of this now. I don’t actually think the digital Ricoh is more reliable but it costs only a hundred or so dollars to replace whereas the Gr21 is easily ten times that. Also would like to thank all the people that emailed me this week to congratulate me for the Lensculture portfolio or to say they were coming to Korea and want to meet up. Also, the story of this photo came as a request via email. Always, feel free to email me with any question or comment you may have. jt in seoul@gmail.com.

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