Portrait Studio shares its message about life through pictures

portrait studio ,Shashinkan) is a short-animated film directed by Takashi Nakamura and released in 2013. The story follows the life of a portrait photographer and his relationships with three generations of a family living in Tokyo in the 19th and 20th centuries. With each photo taken, the environment, clothing and characters change to reflect the time in which they are living. The short largely focuses on the exchange between the owner and a young girl, who struggles to smile for his picture. With each passing year, the artist does everything in his power to please her, but fails again and again.

without any statement or dialogue, portrait studio It relies instead on its expressive animation style and a brilliant score composed by Jun Ichikawa (Pokemon: Diamond and Pearl), to express the feelings of the characters during the journey. Despite its length of 16 minutes, the short does an excellent job of building its world, the characters, and the audience’s connection to them. By the end of the film, the audience will likely have tears in their eyes and will be left with an important message about how to live a fulfilling life.

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Portrait studio plot

portrait studio Opens with a recently married couple walking up the stairs of the artist’s workshop which rests on a hill overlooking the city. Fauji’s wife sits down to take his picture, however, she is so shy that she finds it difficult to look at the camera and smile. Despite the owner’s best efforts, she remains depressed and unwilling to part ways. In a moment of realization, the painter wakes up to pick up a bouquet of flowers for the woman to capture. Finally, she looks up and smiles so he can take the picture.

Years later, the same couple returns to the photographer’s shop, but this time with their recently born child. While Mom quickly looks up and smiles, her little girl is far less eager to cooperate. This behavior persists throughout his childhood, and there seems to be little the owner can do to make him smile. Whether it is drawing funny faces, ruthlessly twirling puppets, whistling or dancing, she barks incessantly. Ultimately, the photographer can do little but take a picture of her and allow the family to leave with the memory of their grumpy daughter.

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Time passed and the girl became a woman. Despite her newfound maturity, she is still unable to smile for the camera and continues to walk through life with an air of sadness. The now middle-aged photographer has witnessed many devastations from the earthquake that destroyed much of the surrounding area, to the bombings of war that wreaks havoc on his local community. The resulting chaos destroys both the woman’s father and teenage son, leaving her in an even greater state of misery.

During the modern era, women have been left orphans, widows and without heirs. The only person who remains constant in her life is the photographer, whom she takes care of in old age. She remains as serious in her last days as she was in her youth; However, after finding a series of photos taken over the years, he is finally able to reflect on all the positive things that have happened in his life. After the owner of the portrait studio requests that they sit together for a picture, she is finally able to smile.

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An important message about the theme and life of Portrait Studio

portrait studio Examines ideas around time, memory, human bondage and happiness. While they tend to be singular moments, the photos the photographer takes serve as important reminders of events that have happened in the life of the family. Be it marriage, birth, personal achievements or even death, the artist remains a stable figure. The photographs they take are able to capture temporal passages of time and allow visitors to be reminded of the people, places and even the eras in which they were once inhabited.

While portrait photography is usually intended to promote the happy moments in a person’s life, the artist instead finds himself taking pictures of a girl who is unable to smile. This engagement reflects the difficult conditions in Japan during this period. From the great Kanto earthquake of 1923 to the devastation of Tokyo by American bombings in the 1940s, the woman’s sadness, which is shown even soon after her birth, foreshadows the challenging life she will have to live.

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The camera serves as a symbol of the continuous change that took place around the world from the Meiji to the Shwa period. The photographer not only takes pictures of people at different stages of their lives, but also captures how their clothes, customs and environments change along with them. From a relatively small city made of wood, Tokyo transforms into a sprawling cityscape made of metal and concrete. The serene, nature-filled landscapes that once surrounded the region’s people have now turned into commercial resorts, trains and bustling footpaths. As the characters enter their twilight year, Japan has begun to boom.

The short ends with an important message about how people should live their lives. The woman appears to have lived a life of misery in which she has struggled to find happiness. After losing her father, husband and son she has become irritable and unable to realize the gifts given to her. Even in childhood, it seems that she has focused on the negative elements around her and got lost in her rigid perception. However, in her old age, she begins to understand that she is loved and begins to be grateful for the life she is leading. portrait studio sends a warning that as spectators we should be grateful for the wonderful things around us and not let even the most terrifying circumstances poison the gifts.

Nakamura’s beautiful animation, coupled with Ichikawa’s classical piano score, provides an extremely enjoyable watch for anyone looking for a touching story. much like House in Little Cubes, portrait studio manages to condense a range of powerful human emotions into some well-constructed characters despite the lack of dialogue. The removal of the language helps the work become a truly universal experience, regardless of the setting of the film.


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