While riding my bicycle to work earlier this week, I passed by an elementary school that had Korean students all bustling about and beating on traditional drums. I didn’t have much time to investigate, and I only had two frames remaining on the roll I had loaded in the Rolleiflex. I had a few extra rolls on me ( I never leave home without at least 2-3 rolls of film – even if I don’t necessarily have plans to go shooting ). Despite being in a rush to get to work, I hopped off my bike and snapped the two quick frames you see here. I wish I had more time to capture the commotion but I’m pretty satisfied with photos I managed. I’m especially pleased that the photo being taken in the shadows came out well. I didn’t have time to meter the lighting, so I just took an estimated guess, and adjusted my aperture hurriedly as I walked over to the bridge. I leaned up against a post, composed the frame, and fired that one last shot on the roll. It all went down in a matter of seconds. I hopped on my bike and peddled to work.
The students here are donning their special clothes and and instruments for Samul nori ( 사물놀이 ), a traditional Korean form of percussion music. This type of music was and continues to be played along with acrobatic performances, folk dances, and other rituals. Anseong, the town in which I dwell, is famous for these types of performances. Traditionally, Samul nori was performed in small rice villages ( like Anseong ) to ensure bountiful harvests. I guess the kids have been doing a solid job. Harvest has come.
I’m glad I just happened upon this scene and was able to capture a bit of it to share with you all. It was captured with a Rolleiflex Automat A on Rollei Retro 400s film, developed in the darkroom with D76. Enjoy ^^ © Patrick Bresnahan