The blog of Tokyo based photographer and photojournalist, Damon Coulter

Personal Pic

2011 was a year to remember. Am editing my archive now to put together a selection of some of the best images I took this year, as I try to do every year. Of course 2011 was one of the busiest news years anyone can remember. Though I was not involved in recording the over-throws of dictators in the Arab Spring or the killing of Osama bin Laden or any of the other big news stories that happened this year. Here in Japan we had the March 11th earthquake and tsunami plus the nuclear crisis in Fukushima that resulted from them, to deal with. It was a busy year and one that is forever etched in my memory. Choosing a few meaningful photos from the thousands I took related to this event alone is difficult.

But I like the one above and thought I’d share it with you. It shows Daily Mirror Journalist, Tom Parry, interviewing tsunami survivors in Otsuchi in Iwate. To me the images sums up the situation working up there. Surrounded by devastation the like of which I had never seen before, I found the locals’ needs to share their stories something useful I could encourage and translate (inexpertly it has to be said due to dialect) to allow Tom to do his job. I know it sounds strange given the place and what we listened to but I liked working up there with this journalist who is smart and sensitive and a good person to share such an intense experience with. I hope I get to work with him again some day. But this image does remind me of the unreal, workaday reality of news-gathering in the disaster zone and is one of my favourite images from the year.

Please read back through the posts I wrote at the time for more of my feelings about what happened in Japan this Spring.

More later.


More images of the 2011 Tohoku tsunami in Japan at my archive site here



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