Kokyu: A visual journey through the inspiration of legendary snow surfer, Taro Tamai

This book feels alive.

If Chris Burkard is the rockstar of photographing our Earth, then Taro Tamai is the conductor of its symphony.

Taro is the founder of Gentemstick, a Japanese company that explores the connection between surf, snow, and creating the perfect snowboard to capture the energy of the mountain. That philosophy is visualized in his book, Kokyu, which translates from Japanese to breath, air or breathing.

Images of a soft sky at dusk, the light cast by the setting sun over a surf break, of snow-covered trees during a break from a snowstorm. You can hear the ocean wind and feel the biting cold on your face with each turn of a page, as if you were there.

It seems alive.

In Kokyu, you won’t find high contrast landscapes or the type of photo that becomes Instagram famous. The photographs within these pages offer a glimpse of the inspiration for Taro; they are scenes of home, of his relationship with the natural world. He has a gift to find beauty in what you and I would dismiss as ordinary, and to see the simple beauty in the trees, sky, snow and sea.

Rather than focusing on the expanse of the natural world, Taro trains his lens on its intricacies. He leads the reader through the elements that inspire him to create the tool that accentuates each scene, to make us feel connected of the environment rather than an observer of an otherworldly destination. It is honest and true.

You can get your copy of Kokyu by Taro Tamai here

Follow Taro on Instagram

Watch also: Patagonia presents The Northern Sky featuring Josh Dirksen, Gerry Lopez, Alex Yoder, and Taro Tamai


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