4 years before the cult classic anime 'Akira' was released, legendary artist Katsuhiro Otomo created two commercials for the debut of the Canon T-70. The original title for the project was, 'Canon T-70: Future Cityhen (未来都市篇)'.
The Akira manga was actually being published since 1982...but could this have been the first on-screen arrival from the Akira universe? 🤔
Not much information is available on the project at all, except that the building seen in the commercial was inspired by the historic paintings (c.1563) of Pieter Bruegel's depiction of the Tower of Babel. Otomo is a true artist.
The song in the first clip is titled 'Dawn' by Japanese synth-pop artist, Takumi Iwasaki and the second is titled 'Fragments of Time', also by Iwasaki. If you saw our previous posts of the Takeshi Kitano commercials, they also used a song from Takumi Iwasaki and its featured on this same album release on the B side!
Also interesting is that Otomo designed the cover illustration for the release of the record, which also ties in with the commercial. It would be cool to know what the story behind the commercial was about🤔.
Another curious note is that in the later Akira movie, the 'Canon' logo was shown on the side of Kaneda's bike. A nod and thank you to Canon perhaps?
Has anyone seen these commercials before or have any more information at all? Let us know!
Below are various images we found related to commercial, album artwork and the lesser known English version of the commercial.
We are big fans of Konica at Third Culture and even bigger fans of this questionable Konica advertising jingle sung by Hong Kong Canto-pop icon & actor, Leslie Cheung (RIP Legend).
Did you know Konica actually pre-dates Kodak in the photography business, starting in 1873? Konica have always been a very innovative company: releasing one of the first all Japanese produced 'compact cameras' (Cherry Portable Camera) in 1902, pioneering the creation of auto-exposure in cameras with focal-plane shutters in the 60's, developed countless cult favourite film cameras such as the tiny half frame 'Konica Recorder', 80's on-trend aesthetic 'Konica Tomato', voice-activated 'Konica Kanpai', compact legendary 'Konica Big Mini' series and my own daily camera the (super underrated) Konica Hexar RF.
Konica's own 'Hexanon' lenses were that highly regarded (but still underrated commercially!) in terms of optical quality that they were used by the Japanese Government as the standard against which all other lenses were measured. ALL other lenses. Yup..even against Nikon & Canon giants.
They also were a major player producer of 35mm film, originally sold under the name 'Sakura' (seen at the start of the video) but changed the name worldwide in 1987 to fall under 'Konica'.
Konica was the genuine, fun brand that did their own thing, never followed trends and kept it real. They were once the greatest optical company in Asia and one of the top in the world. All until..digital cameras took off and they got left a bit behind. They eventually called it quits in the photography business in 2003 and merged with (another once glorious company) Minolta and decided to make photocopiers together instead.MF photocopiers, man. Damn shame.
Remember the Konica legacy next time you're thinking of photocopying your ass at work and pay respect to the OG instead.✊🏽
These videos feature an amazing street photographer out of Sydney, Australia named Markus Andersen. He shoots using all mediums but prefers 35mm analog photography, as seen in these two mini-documentaries. These videos definitely deserve much more views on YouTube but I feel they may be overlooked because it's from Australia and well..things get overlooked in Australia at times.
The first video examines Andersen's philosophy when it comes to shooting street photography and what drives him to feel the need to do so. There aren't many great documentaries on the subject of street photography in my opinion (that do it well) besides 'Everybody Street' and a handful of others that I am aiming to post up here. Most of what you find on youtube about Street Photography focuses more on the cameras or film stock rather than the photos and process, itself and what that really means to the photographer. I really enjoyed this documentary and find myself watching it every once in a while when I feel like I need some inspiration.
"Markus Andersen doggedly pursues not merely cool images but great images with urban and suburban Sydney, Australia as his canvas. His art practice encompasses documentary, street and conceptual bodies of work using analog and digital as his capture mediums. This video shows the thinking behind the artist's work."
"For over a year, Sydney-based photographer Markus Andersen photographed one of Western Sydney most vibrant suburbs, Cabramatta. Get insight into the making of his latest series of work, as you wander through the bustling streets of the city. Meet the community and contemplate fleeting moments of everyday life in Cabramatta. This colourful and bold photographic series is regarded as a unique reflection of Australian multiculturalism."