The photographic blog of Sean Wood (aka motionid)

Mystery Road

Trying to figure out where this road starts from. Took a stab at finding it today on the bike but with no luck. This happens to be the same road I shot more than a year ago albetit with a lot more colour and different personality.


Kyōdō Awa Odori

Awa Odori at Kyōdō in Tokyo. It's a small, local event with a great local atmosphere. This is used by the team (Tensyouren) to practice for the event in Koenji at the end of August. It's also a chance for new members to experience what it's like to perform in front of a crowd. I tagged along for the event in an unofficial capacity which limited my access but it was worth the effort. Driving there for the first time was more of an ordeal than dodging rain and people while shooting. Google maps just does not work right now and the trip to and from the event took way longer than expected. 

hmmm. Guess I should add something about the pictures - shot a load. This is a super quick edit. Mixed white balance because I am lazy and processed in VSCO film using the tried and true Provia 400x - which is my favorite film in the real world also (I heard they stopped making the 120 version. crap!!).

Adventures of Mountain Man and Pale Rider

Outing with Mr. Ellis late last year. A drive to Izu via almost the opposite side of the world thanks to a Google maps bug. Must have been a gale force 9 out there the day we went. The wind really accentuated the whole mountain man look Jon was sporting. Made it all the way down to a little place called Heda where we stopped at the only restaurant open in town.

A place I'm going to visit again once the roads are less icy. 


Mobile tools

This post is a test of a few mobile tools I've been trialling.  

The workflow is as follows: 

Shoot with the Canon to an eyefi 2 card.  

Upload pics to phone.  

Edit pics on phone in VSCO cam then use the SquareSpace blog tool on the phone to upload the pics and write the post.  

The photo workflow seems to work quite well. The idea of not having to sit in front of a computer to edit and adjust is quite appealing. I suppose this approach is not only normal to some but the only way of working.  

I'll be interested to see how this post turns out when viewing the site. There doesn't seem to be a lot of control with this blog tool.



After posting I discovered a few thing's. First issue was that I edited an old post from the days of Wordpress which happened to have a load of code injected into the body which could not been seen using the SquareSpace app. So I removed that once I checked the post using the computer.

2nd issue was that I could not enable the Lightbox function for the pictures using the SquareSpace app so I subsequently tweaked each image. Other than that the workflow seemed to work quite well.

Downside to all of this, however, is that the images being edited are jpg's not RAW and, I have no ability to apply any editing settings to the RAW files if I so choose at a later date.


If you happen to be around the Okutama area and are looking for a very quiet and out of the way place to have a BBQ or a spot of lunch (provided you have brought your own) I recommend visiting the Otaba area. The river is also perfect in thew summer for swimming.

Note that you'll likely only be able to reach it by bike or car.

The Little Road - part 2

I'm sitting on a little set of images I seem to have grown quite fond of over the last week. The title says it all. I could end up making parts through to 19 or thereabouts but I might hold off a bit. I'm always unsure if the images are all too the same to be a little series or they are different enough. I've managed to break to usual habits so far. One is to not sit on these for half a year and procrastinate. And the other being I may end up calling this a set and moving on for fear of never completing the series.

I think the blog might just be a good place to think out aloud and let new ideas form.

The little road

I'm sure this little series I've just made will appear in B+W but for the moment I'm releasing maybe a single colour image.

Venturing to the mountains again I happened upon a little road I did not know existed. Followed it quite a way before the rain caused me to turn back (that's what happens when you carry three cameras and no umbrella on your journey :-)

I will be visiting this area again but hopefully next time it will be by bike and I will see where the rest of it leads.

The weather, if you have not guessed by the picture was wet and foggy with the whole mountain covered in cloud. At points you couldn't see beyond 15 feet in front of you (that's 4.5 metres for the modern world).

I also shot Holga and Horizon Perfekt. Will be interesting to see how the film turns out.

As usual click the image for a larger version.


Dirty Laundry

Coin laundries in Tokyo come in all shapes and sizes. I've seen few fancy ones and more than a few run down, barely working places. What I'm really interested in is getting shots of people in them waiting but given their size it seems like a difficult task. I hope add a few more in the coming months. Wondering if this can turn into something.

Oh, I almost forgot. This one happens to be just up the street from me. I'd been meaning to shoot it for months but hadn't gotten around to it until now.

Huis Marseille

While visiting Amsterdam I was determind to see a few photo galleries. I had no idea where to start looking and no idea if anything beyond World Press Photo existed there. The first gallery was Foam of Foam Magazine fame. I knew the magazine but had no idea it was based out of Amsterdam. It's was an interesting space but perhaps my timing to the gallery was not a match for the type of photography that I am interested in as I found most of the work on display at the time a bit too conceptual for my taste.

The Huis Marseille on the other hand I had not heard of and stopped by as it was on the route of other places to see. I had no idea what was showing at the time nor any expectations about the place. It turned out the entire building was being used for one large exhibition titled "Apartheid & After" put together as a showing of thirteen photographers work from South Africa. The whole experience was really impressive with each photographer having a different viewpoint on issues in the region. I'd never seen a whole building committed to showing one theme and I found it a very immersive experience. I would highly recommend adding the Huis Marseille on your list of galleries if you happen to be in that part of Europe.

Below are a small set of images of the space and the exhibition.

Contrails in Amsterdam

While in Amsterdam (I'm still here as I write this but about to leave) I discovered a lot of planes leaving contrails. I'd seen this occasionally but not to the point where there were so many planes and trails all in the same place. I recall a contact on Flickr from France posting a shot that reminded me of the same and that I must live in a low trafficked area. That and the weather where I live is not as conducive to making trails.Amsterdam was an amazing place but these contrails are the one thing that seemed to really grab my attention. Rather than just try to shoot the trails I've attempted to add a bit of unique context by leaving in the surrounding buildings or trees.

Koenji Awa Odori 2013

Where to begin!?
Yes, it’s a LOAD of pictures. But I guess when you’ve been trying to edit 9000 pictures down to around 1700 and tweak the white balance and colour for each, they start to grow on you. What has inspired me more than anything are the smiles in all the pictures. This team are a happy bunch and it makes life a LOT easier to edit 9000 smiles.

So every year for the past 5 years or so I have been the photographer for the Tensyouren team. This basically makes me a member of the team which requires me to be where the team is to document the two days the event runs.

Part of the requirement is to make sure that everyone’s picture gets taken both days. When you have 110 members that’s not easy. Especially when they are waving their hands all over the place the entire time :-)

With so many people to shoot and each group having their own little routine I need to work my way up and down the whole team several times during one session ensuring I capture each group. This requires I duck and weave my way through the team as they dance past and then rush back up past them to catch them and do it all over again. This is straight forward on wide streets but really difficult on the narrow streets.

Then there is the choice of lens.
I only have one camera body so I either stick to one lens for one session or change half way through. On long wide streets the process is less stressful because there is more time to capture what’s going on as well as space to move. But on narrow streets changing a lens can be impossible due to the lack of space. All you need is one spectator to push past and you’ll see a lens bounce down the road.

The most difficult part about the whole process is the huge difference there is in capturing a narrow or wide street. Because of the wide / narrow street variation and the speed at which the event happens, gaining experience in lens choice, which angle works, how to dodge the spectators and dive up and down the team as they dance becomes a multi year process. And the event is only once a year over two days so there is no other opportunity to gain experience.

The whole event has such an amazing atmosphere and the team is so enthusiastic it makes any issue a non issue.
So I leave you with too many photos as proof that the Tensyouren team had a fantastic time at this years Koenji Awa Odori.


Bon Odori 2013

I shoot this every year. I like the atmosphere. And every year the location seems to have this great light at the end of the day. And every year on the same day it threatens to rain and doesn't. Until now :-)

We (Thomas - pictured above) managed to escape before the downpour. Seconds after we arrived at the izakaya the sky opened up and let loose for several hours.

I could (or should?) add more shots but if you search through the blog you'll find others almost the same from previous years.

Small note. My gallery ordering is broken which is really annoying me. Just so you know it's not by choice the images above are in this order.