Jeremiah Rogers

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Sun, Jan 24, 2016

Marin, California. January, 2016.

Road up to Tomales Bay. The wind up the mountains causes the fog to blow out from the trees in strange and beautiful ways. If we’d had a minute it would have been nice to stop longer and watch.

Thu, Dec 24, 2015

Kandal Market. Phnom Penh, Cambodia. 2015.

The layers in Asia are fantastic. Spaces are so crowded that people stack on top of each other. Scenes like this exist in America but they’re much harder to find.

This small market near my house in Phnom Penh was a warren of activity. People kept their stalls so crowded with merchandise that walking through you’d have to duck under and around things. A section in the front sold watches, an expanse in the back was where my friend Oun Neth got her hair and nails done, and in the center under a torn tarp were the food sellers. Cooking over boiling pots, steam light pouring in through the holes in the ceiling.

I used to hate this picture because part of it is blown out and it wasn’t exposed properly. But images like these area hard for everyone, the difference between light and dark is so extreme. Canon 6D at 28mm.

Sun, Aug 23, 2015

A man on a small boat in a light rain storm as oil spills into the Buriganga River through Dhaka, Bangladesh.

Two weeks ago I spent five days in Dhaka, Bangladesh. On my second day in the city proper I made my way down to Shadurghat port by rickshaw. Shadurghat is a fantastically busy port with over 1.5 million people arriving every day by boat.

The almost one hour long ride to Shadurghat cost such a small amount of money, only 100 taka (about $1.28) that I felt badly for the rickshaw driver. He was happy to get the money and my small tip, but it shows just how poor some of the people in Bangladesh are.

At Shadurghat port I was quickly mobbed by curious locals, repeatedly asking me “What country?”, asking me if I had cigarettes for them, and men in blue shirts with red sleeve markers asking me if I wanted them to show me around.

Men on a ferry boat in Dhaka, Bangladesh look on as oil spills into the Buriganga, River.

One man stood out from the crowd, a man who’s name I would later learn is Juwul. Juwul asked me if I’d just like to accompany him into the port and look at a few of the boats — a hard offer to turn down — but then he led me on a kind of magical two hour tour through the boats, across the Buriganga River in a small dinghy, and through the ship destruction yards and propeller manufacturing plants of South Dhaka.

Juwul opening an umbrella as storms gathered and showing me where we were headed, the yards in South Dhaka.

This wasn’t a reporting project. I had no specific goals in mind except seeing what was in the city that I may find interesting to come back and photograph later.

This was the beginning of what I’d hoped was a one month long road journey between Dhaka, Bangladesh and Chennai, India. I ended up cutting that journey short because of illness.

My primary lesson from this trip, which I think was incredibly valuable, is that I want to be operating from a home base going forward. I love travel, I love the open road, but the fortitude needed to push into more and more remote areas comes more easily to me when I know that there’s a home and friends to return to. Being sick in Bangladesh and wanting to go home and not knowing where home is was tough.

Left: Man working to destruct a ship in a South Dhaka, shipyard. Right: Oil spilling into the Buriganga River.

Workers banging on ships with small hammers in South Dhaka, Bangladesh.

Welding propellers in South Dhaka, Bangladesh.

On the technical side, all of these images were captured with a pocketable Ricoh GR camera. In this series they’re all shot at 28mm and uncropped. The Ricoh GR is a marvelous camera for something that fits in your pocket. I’m stunned at the image reproduction it creates. I’m also in love with the mechanics of the camera.

Operating the Ricoh GR:

  • For me I generally keep the Ricoh in shutter priority (TV) mode with snap focus set to 1.5 meters. In daylight I often set exposure compensation to -13 stops so that it will retain detail in the sky.
  • I use the Fn1 button (left on the D-pad) to switch quickly between snap focus and autofocus. The effect button is set to snap focus distance, and the Fn2 button is set to ISO.
  • On this trip I didn’t have a laptop so I created JPEGs in camera for Instagram and Facebook. Generally those JPEGs were created after the image was captured using Raw Development mode, which does a good job at letting me change exposure up or down one stop.
  • In Lightroom or Capture One the Ricoh GR raw files, which are standard DNG, have a lot of latitude. I’m able to get up or down 2.5 stops without substantial noise in the shadows or errors recovering highlights.
  • For such a small package camera I think that the lens is remarkable. As with all cameras this really depends on getting the exposure right. Once the exposure is nailed, and especially in good light, the Ricoh GR shines to make some amazing photographs.

Left: Young men destroying a mould of a ship propeller in South Dhaka. Right: Men casting a new ship propeller in sand on the ground.

Looking north at Dhaka city from a ship yard in South Dhaka, Bangladesh.

Tue, Jul 28, 2015

Novice monks gathering alms. Chinatown, Bangkok.

When I first arrived in Bangkok in 2013 it seemed so fascinating. I stepped out of the airplane and thought for a while about the insanity of people standing upside down on the other side of the planet. I had never been so far from home.

Things were odd at a micro and a macro levels: different looking food, buildings, and transit. A different language with an unusual alphabet. Monks walking everywhere in gorgeous orange robes.

Now after many visits to the city and a lot of time exploring or visiting I actually have some difficulty photographing Bangkok because it feels so normal. That’s a strange mental place. Compared to Cambodia, Bangkok feels a solid 50 years into the future. Cambodia has one big shopping mall. Bangkok has dozens. Cambodia has no metro. Bangkok has at least two, and perhaps four or five, depending on how you count. It feels like a major place.

Like Cambodia, Bangkok’s Chinatown is hectic with a lot of action in the streets. Also like Cambodia this seems to peak at night — when everything is a bit too chaotic for me — and the mornings, when the air is cool, people are moving slowly, and I can see the city beginning its day.

I find that things are more collective and beautiful in the morning than at night: praying at temples, monks gathering alms, women selling flowers, people unloading trucks or cooking or sweeping. It feels like a rebirth.

Here are just a few photos after many days taking pictures. On one particular morning more things came together than had before.

Woman selling flowers. Chinatown, Bangkok.

Workers. Chinatown, Bangkok.

Praying. Chinatown, Bangkok.

Praying. Chinatown, Bangkok.

Feet and yellow chairs. Chinatown, Bangkok.