Reminders Photography Stronghold Gallery will be celebrating its 4th year anniversary. We will be proudly organizing Junpei Ueda’s solo show in upcoming November. He is one of the 2015 Photobook As Object workshop participants and he has been working on his book project “Picture of My Life” almost a year and finally it’ll be launched at the exhibition. Prior to the show, Junpei is sharing a series of his essay.


In 2015, I participated in the hand-made photobook workshop at Reminders Photography Stronghold (RPS) Gallery in Tokyo. During the workshop, I made a dummy of the book “Picture of My Life” under the guidance of RPS curator Yumi Goto and photographer Jan Rosseel. Together, we made a rough storyline as well as edited and sequenced the images. When I was working alone, the editing work was going nowhere. Discussions with Yumi had helped me to eliminate the weak images and to weave the images together into a story.

“Picture of My Life” is my history. It is the history of Junpei Ueda – son, husband, father and photographer. I had a fantastic feeling when I saw the book finally finished, 18 years after I first had the idea of making it. The book is me. The traces of my life, my parents’ teachings and the unforgettable events – all rolled into one. It was filled with my aspirations for the future. This book is my reflection and it carries the gene I inherited from my ancestors.

The book has been designed appropriately to reflect the story. My history book combines photos and text to tell the story of what I really want to express. I choose a cloth hardcover that resembled the family album. I used the portrait my father had painted of me for the cover. In this book, his paintings and my photos are harmoniously combined. What my parents had passed on to me was crystallized as a book.

During the process of making my history book, I realized what I have received from my parents. I was finally able to confront their deaths and found them alive inside of me. My wish is to share with the whole world my parents’ teachings, which I had learned through the prolonged process of making the book. I wish to show that one can stay alive in the people we love.

—- END

English translation: Miyuki Okuyama
English proofreading: Tan Lee Kuen

Essay archives:
Picture of My Life Essay #1 My Father’s Paintings by Junpei Ueda
Picture of My Life Essay #2 My Parents by Junpei Ueda
Picture of My Life Essay #3 The Escape by Junpei Ueda
Picture of My Life Essay #4 Nightmare by Junpei Ueda
Picture of My Life Essay #5 Moment of Death by Junpei Ueda
Picture of My Life Essay #6 Family Album by Junpei Ueda
Picture of My Life Essay #7 A Photo Student by Junpei Ueda
Picture of My Life Essay #8 New Family by Junpei Ueda
Picture of My Life Essay #9 A Photographer by Junpei Ueda
His exhibition forthcoming November 3rd to 27th.
Picture of My Life has been all pre-ordered.