Rip Zinger: West Americanized Tour
Tomonori “RIP” Tanaka’s rolling perspective through the United States is a modern day survey on street culture. His recent release of a book called Ripzinger West Americanized Tour is a collection of images that document RIP’s infatuation with the American dream. Skating on a Krooked Zip Zinger deck, hence the name, he explores the notion that photography can be more than simply photographing a subject. He proposes that the action of snapping a picture is closely aligned to the act of skateboarding. There is a moment when one must make a decision- when to take that jump, when to bail and when to stick your landing. Photography holds similar decisions. There are fractions of seconds when you must decide on the composition, light, expression and then click.
RIP gained an interest in shooting moments after acquiring a GR1s camera. The camera’s performance seemed to match the style of the skateboard, allowing him to roam the cities and be wherever, whenever. This blend of maneuverability and freedom provided a platform for an endless urge to obtain an abundant amount of photographs. Throughout this journey, he noted how parks have changed, the subtleties of the past and present culture, how interactions have evolved, how retail chains play a huge role in the ever expanding market, and ultimately to question his own existence, “What is the true meaning of skateboarding in my life?” The answer to that question seems to float in between his constructed view of what the “American Dream” is and actually fulfilling one of his own dreams, realizing the production of this book.