On Japanese design, photography and books.

It’s noticeable that photography books these days are not just confined to hard case, limp-bound or saddle stitch, neither are the design layouts looking same old formulated. I hope I don’t sound too bias, but such is the case with some of the Japanese photography books that made the shortlist in the recent Aperture Paris Photo Book Awards.

Not surprising with the Japanese having a penchant in design, clearly seen in ‘Tsunami, Photographs, and Then’ by Muemasa Takahashi, which made the ‘Photography Catalog of The Year’ shortlist; I like its simple and clean design layout which is really comfortable to look at. Check out the book flip.

I love this hand-made, hand-sewn, two facing gatefold limp-bound books in one, with odd size pages photography book titled ‘Red String’ by Yoshikatsu Fujii. Beautifully design by Yoshikatsu Fujii, Yumi Goto and Jan Rosseel as part of a photo book-making workshop at Reminders Photography Stronghold, it has a nice tactile feel to it. I’m rooting for this book win the ‘First Photo Book Award’. Check out the book flip.

Here is another book I like, a similar limp-bound book with opened hard case with loose sheets as seen in ‘Silent Histories’ by Kazuma Obara. Shortlisted for the ‘First Photo Book Award, this book is also part of the photo book-making workshop at Reminders Photography Stronghold, design by Kazuma Obara, Yumi Goto and Jan Rosseel. Check out the book flip.

I’m not all about design, printing and finishing. I simply adore this beautiful and simple concept paired with nice french binding seen in ‘Photograph’ by Yuji Hamada, a perfect example on how we don’t have to think too hard on projects. This book also made the ‘First Photo Book Award’ shortlist.

And lastly, some nice big print over the image-wrap open hard case with two stacked limp-bound books seen in ‘Marrakech’ by Daido Moriyama which made the ‘Photo Book of the Year’ shortlist. Check out the book flip.

I will love to own all these beautifully-made photography books, but they are unfortunately mostly sold out…

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