SAMURAI FOTO members participated in Portfolio Review “Meeting Place” of FOTO Fest in Houston.

FOTO FESTのポートフォリオレビュー”Meeting Place”に参加しました。

March 20th to 23rd, 2018 / 2018年3月20日 - 23日

Like the year of 2016, we participated in portfolio review of Foto fest this year. Six of the members actually registered and participated in the meeting place. The other member was just with us and saw how the reviews were going. He got a chance to show his artworks at the lobby in the hotel.
We gave presentations to many reviewers such as gallery owners, curators and publishers. We had very good reputations from them. We were sure that our artworks got much improved than last time.
2016年に引き続き、FOTO FESTのポートフォリオレビューに参加してきました。今回は6名がエントリーし、1名が見学とロビー活動(ロビーで作品を見てもらうこと)。ギャラリストやキューレター、パブリッシャーなどアート・フォトグラフィのエキスパートたちに作品をプレゼンしました。その反応はとてもよく、たくさんのいいお話をもらえたのですが、それはSAMURAI FOTOのメンバーの作品のグレードが前回よりも上がったためだと私たち自身にも嬉しい驚きがありました。

The site was located in the business area in Houston.

The portfolio review had been held in Double Tree Hotel before. But there was still the influence of last year’s hurricane damage, White Hall Hotel became a venue this time.
これまでずっとDouble Tree Hotelが会場でしたが、昨年ヒューストンを襲ったハリケーンの影響がまだ残っていたため、今年はWhite Hall Hotelが会場となりました。

It was a good season to visit this time of year. The diurnal temperature rose high and one day it got up to 28 degrees Celsius. We felt cold because the air-conditioning in the hotel room was too strong.

The first day of the portfolio review got started. Basic precautions were announced. Every morning we checked the information which was put on the wall and saw which table the reviewers would be.

Starting the activity at the lobby in the hotel

After we arrived at Houston airport, we went to White Hall Hotel to check in. There, we saw a Russian organizer who had invited Yoshida to the international photo exhibition once and asked him to see our artworks.

We also showed our artworks to gallery owners of Blue Sky Gallery. They are the host of portfolio Review “photolucida” in Portland. It was a good practice for the actual presentation at Meeting Place, starting from the following day.

Actually, they weren’t registered as reviewers this time. So we had to ask them at the lobby and showed our photographs by ourselves. At the actual portfolio review, we had to give a presentation within a time limit of 20 minutes. But there was no time limit to show our photographs at the lobby, so we were all relaxed.

Our English Skill and Presentation Technique got better day by day.

This was Aoyama’s very first photo review. She said she worried about giving presentation without an interpreter, so Hasumi and Yoshida were there with her to help. But on the final day, she finally could do the presentation all by herself. We were impressed by her rapid progress.

As it was Motoko Sato’s first photo review abroad, she was with her interpreter almost every time. But on the third day, she tried to do the presentation by herself. Some of the reviewers said that they wanted to purchase her artworks. She also made a good appeal for having her photo exhibition.

It was Chiyoda’s second challenge for FOTO FEST. Every time she finished her presentation, she checked what was missed at the presentation. Then she added them to next presentation. Last time Chiyoda was asked to make a handmade photo book of her, she made one and brought it to the photo review this time. It achieved a successful outcome.
FOTO FESTは2回目の千代田さんは1つのレビューが終わる毎に、自分のプレゼンに足りないことを加えていきました。前回、ハンドメイドの写真集を作ってくるよう言われたことを実現してきたことも功を奏しました。

Hasumi showed platinum prints to the reviewers this time. He made the artworks integrate with digital photography. His artworks had high reputation and Hasumi got an offer to hold a photo exhibition at Southeast Museum in Daytona State College next year.
蓮見さんの今回はプラチナプリント作品。しかも、従来のものではなく、デジタル技術と融合させています。そこが評価され、すでに来年のフロリダ州立デイトナ大学のSoutheast Museumでの写真展が決まりました。

It was Maeta’s second challenge for the portfolio review in a foreign country. He once had joined the photo review in 2014 in Arles, France. He brought a picture book that he made using his photos and contrived ways to do presentation. He seemed that he succeeded to make reviewers inspire his artworks.

It’s fourth time of the portfolio review for Yoshida. He presented his new work. His artworks were created by classical technique, called ambrotype photography. He combined the photo with digital technique and made new artworks. It was highly valued by the reviewers and Yoshida got a lot of proposals to hold photo exhibitions.

The movie of PortfolioReview, Free Bus Tour, Portfolio Walk
SAMURAIメンバーのレビューと写真展巡り、Portfolio Walkの動画

Most of the members had three or four reviews during the portfolio review. Some of them were really nervous because it was their first reviews. But by the end of the day, their tension loosened up. They could do the presentations all by themselves on the last day. It was a remarkable achievement. Suga didn’t register this time but came to Houston with us to see how the portfolio review went. Luckily, she had a chance to show her artworks to some reviewers, which was a good experience for her. She may be able to participate in another portfolio review next year.
There is no substitute for experiences. We learned a lot of things at the portfolio review this time. From now on, all we have to do is to keep working hard to create good artworks. We are all grateful for those precious opportunities and opened the door to our next adventure.
FOTO FEST 2018のポートフォリオレビュー第3セッションで4日間、毎日4~5つのレビュー受けていたSAMURAI FOTOメンバーたち。レビュー自体が初めてだったり、海外レビューが初だったメンバーはとくに初日の朝にはとても緊張していましたが、1日目が終わったところで緊張も解け、最終日には通訳さんがいなくても一人でもレビューできるほどになりました。その進歩の度合いは目を見張るほどです。見学がメインだった須賀さんもいろんなレビュワーさんに作品を見せることができて、いい経験となり、次回のポートフォリオレビューのエントリーも実現しそうです。

Bus Tour for Seeing other Photo Exhibitions

After the review, we joined a free bus tour to see another photo exhibition. Many reviewers were coming as well, so it was a great opportunity to communicate with them.

There is a famous fine art photo museum in Houston. We could visit many other photo studios. They held not only photo exhibitions but gave various workshops.

Every photo studio was big and we enjoyed seeing many kinds of artworks. The wide range of the photo expressions inspired us and we were all overwhelmed by their sense of photography. The experiences in oversea portfolio were exciting and refreshing.

Appealing the artworks at Portfolio Walk
Portfolio Walkでさらに自分の作品をアピール

4日間のうちには”Portfolio Walk”と呼ばれるこんなイベントもあります。19~21時の間、参加写真家全員がテーブルに作品を並べて見せるというもので、これには多くの一般の方、レビュワーなどがやって来ます。また、無料のワインも配られて、和やかにプレゼンしながらも、ほかの参加者の作品も見られる絶好の機会にもなります。FOTO FESTのエグゼクティブ・ディレクターや大物コレクターなど、思わぬ重要人物がふらっと現れたりもするので、ここですごい話に繋がるというチャンスも生まれたりします。


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