We enjoy publishing photos of Korea but, until now, we’ve normally only given airtime to the old, the very old, and the even older than that. In celebration of our continuing photo series, we invited Mariusz Sikorski, a Polish-Canadian photographer to share some of his pics from a recent trip to South Korea.
Originally finding his groove after drawing inspiration from Japanese street photography, Mariusz took himself and his camera on a much-anticipated trip round Korea and, true to his signature style, captured the people, sights and ambiance around him in stunning detail and character. Rather than letting the usual yawntastic long-exposure shots of moonlit temples and steaming pots of kimchi dominate, we like Mariusz’s style of photography as we believe it shows a more candid and natural side of Korea that is often loved, experienced, and enjoyed; but not often captured.
We asked Mariusz what makes him and his camera tick:
I wanted to take a shot at doing something similar to how I approached my photography goals while in Japan. I wanted to be able to capture aspects that draw people to the culture but also facets of everyday Korean life. In truth, prior to going I often saw both countries as quite similar even if different in cultural and ideological terms. I knew that, if I were to go to one, I would at some point in the near future go to the other. Of course, as one can guess I was quite mistaken about the shared similarities and differences which turned out to be both incredibly enjoyable and frustrating at times.
I spent most of the trip documenting some of the adventures I came across in my travels, more so than actually running around with my camera with a dedicated perspective or narrative. It is something I wanted to sincerely spend some time on but I ended up being much busier than anticipated. The majority of the trip was dedicated to spending time with my girlfriend after all.
We got a chance to explore a bit of Seoul, Chuncheon and the many attractions and sights of Jeju Island. I ended up meeting many interesting and kind people along the way and it has become a journey I plan on taking many more times, especially with the intention of spending some serious time with a camera in my hand.
South Korea is a beautiful country and I look forward to returning later this year and exploring it with my camera by my side.
This is part one of a two-part series of Mariusz’s photos of Korea. Next week: South Korea in black and white.
Got interesting photos of Korea, North or South? Contact us