Long papery tree shadows. An ice strewn road. Gathering clouds. These are just some of the images you might find in legendary Japanese photographer Yoshiro Higai's new book "Cold Frame." Double-corks and 1260s? Not so much...
Higai, 45, has been shooting photos for over 30 years and counts Patagonia,Gentem Stick and Mike Basich's 241 clothing among his clients, but "Cold frame" is decidedly uncommercial in nature. Let's just say it's more zen than yen. The images gathered here, shot in spots from Alaska to Fukushima, tend to be less about action and more about the quiet, contemplative vibe one gets in the mountains, especially on Hokkaido where Higai spent over a decade. Think real ultimate powder.
"I want to show this book not only to snowboarders but also ordinary people," he says. "Mr. [Toshio] Shiratani, who does surf and design for a long time and doesn't know much about snowboarding, I asked him for art direction. We chose images that [people] have never seen or scenes [they] tend to overlook. I want people to empathize with my feelings such as joy, excitement and solitude."
At $40 USD plus shipping you don't have to be rich to drop in on "Cold Frame" yet Higai reckons his target audience is probably, "a person who has rich mind [looking for] a journey of the imagination." So, if you're not afraid of the quiet moments on the way up the mountain at 5 a.m. or the subtler textures that make up a more minimalist life in snowboarding, check out this beautifully-produced book from one of Japan's most original eyes.