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TJ Expert

TJ Expert (102)




 |  Published in Japanese Business Expert

Former Accenture Chairman Masakatsu Mori shares his 30 years experience of advising many of Japan’s leading corporations as well as foreign corporations doing business in Japan and beyond.

How to Compete in the Global Market

The global marketplace provides ample opportunities for companies to expand their business. While cultural values, social behaviors, affordability and legal issues may be challenges for running a successful global business, the principles for success are clear. Only a few global companies can survive in each industry. Most of the rest will get acquired or go out of business.

Successful companies should be able to acquire the best capital, labor and raw materials at the lowest cost globally. And their products and services should meet the diversity of needs of international markets.

Rethinking the MBA

Written by  |  Published in Commentary


Rethinking the MBA


As the global financial crisis has subsided, some business schools have added one or two courses on ethics to their MBA programs. The courses are mostly an afterthought. The thinking behind them is: “Our financial institutions have behaved badly, so maybe it would be a good idea to add a touch of ethical instruction to the curriculum.” Nothing could be more revealing of the mindset of our economic thinkers than that business ethics has become a sideshow, an add-on, an extra frill.

The prevailing view of the economy as a giant autonomous mechanism following inexorable laws is a highly abstract, quasi-scientific conception. Like the laws of gravity, there isn’t much room for ethics. But, in fact, this prevailing view conflicts sharply with how we actually experience the economy in our day-to-day encounters.

The Hungarian philosopher Karl Polanyi emphasized the importance of what he called “tacit knowledge,” or non-conscious knowledge that accumulates from our experience with ideas, objects, people or institutions without our being fully aware of it.

On Tour with Bob Gruen

Written by  |  Published in Music Gallery

Go on tour with legendary rock photographer Bob Gruen, who is one of the most well-known and respected photographers in Rock and Roll.

I was 24 years old when I met Ike and Tina Turner, and they were the first well known band I worked with. A friend of mine told me I should go see them and I became an immediate fan. Soon after that I went to see them again at a club called the Honka Monka Club, and brought my camera. I took some good pictures that night and at the end of the show Tina danced off stage with a strobe light flashing. I didn’t know where to set the focus or the exposure, but I thought that maybe if I tried a one second exposure I could catch several images of Tina in the flashes of light. One of the pictures came out really well capturing the energy and excitement that is Tina Turner! A few days later when I went to another Ike & Tina show I brought the pictures to show my friends. After the show one of my friends saw Ike Turner and pushed me in front of him saying ‘Show Ike your pictures!’ Ike looked at the pictures and took me into the dressing room to show Tina. They both liked my pictures a lot and asked me to come and work with them.

Movie Subtitling: Natsuko Toda

Written by  |  Published in Translation & Subtitling

Interview series with Japan’s most renowned translator of foreign films and interpreter for Hollywood stars, Natsuko Toda.

TJ: What is the most common challenge or difficulty that film subtitlers are faced with, and how can this challenge be overcome?
Toda: Practically speaking, having no job is the most difficult situation. Many people want to do subtitling, but job opportunities are limited. Movie companies don’t want to ask someone who has no experience, as they put so much money into the movie. So they usually only ask experienced subtitlers. It’s a vicious circle. You can’t get a job without experience, but you can’t get experience without a job. Getting a job and doing it well is the most important thing. If you fail, you will never be asked again. It’s very hard. I think most people fail because of their lack of Japanese proficiency.

Hiroyuki Suzuki Photo Exhibit Interview #2

Written by  |  Published in Tokyo Photography

Hiroyuki Suzuki's camera lens has taken him to construction sites around the world in an ambition to capture the instability, energy, beauty and hope – he sees as intrinsic within these sites.

Hiroyuki Suzuki

TJ: How and why did you get interested in this style of photography?
Suzuki: I shoot pictures of buildings, not people. However, my pictures can tell people there was a process that went into the history of a building, and there were people involved in the development and timeline of the building. Although very few of my pictures have people in them, it is my hope that people, who look at my pictures, see that people were involved in the creation of that building or thing.

My sensitivity is very sharp for seeing a picture perfect moment and I can see when 1 +1 = 3 very quickly. In 2006, I instantly captured the moment for a striking picture of a bridge being built where the opposite sides were created, but the middle joining piece was missing. I like to photograph very unusual or shocking moments like that. It’s like making a documentary movie and I feel like I’m like a war journalist. For example, if I see a bridge being built while driving to work in the morning, I know it might look very different when I go back home at night, so I have to quickly react to photograph it as soon as possible.


TJ: この撮影スタイルにこだわるようになった いきさつは?
スズキ: 私は人でなく建物の写真を撮ります。 でも私の写真は、建物の歴史を物語る移り変わ りがあり、建物の発展と来歴に関わった人たち がいたことを、見る人に語りかけることができ ます。私の写真に人間が写りこむことはほとん どないのですが、わずかな例外の場合も、その 建物やモノの創造に関わった人であることを感 じてもらえればと思います。

写真についての完璧な瞬間に対する私の感性は 非常に鋭く、1+1 が3 になる瞬間を即座に見 極めることができます。2006 年には、建設中 の橋の決定的瞬間をとらえました。両側が作 られていて中央の結合部分が欠けた格好の橋で した。私は、そうした普通でない、あるいは衝 撃的な瞬間を撮影したいのです。ドキュメンタ リー映画の制作に通じるところもあり、従軍 ジャーナリストのような気がしています。たと えば、朝の通勤途中に建設中の橋を見かけたと します。夜、家に帰る頃には全く違う光景に

Chavez and the World

Written by  |  Published in Haitian Culture & Politics

IN October 1999, after only eight months in office, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez made a state visit to Japan. I had the honor of meeting him at The Foreign Correspondent’s Club in Tokyo after he gave a speech that remains engraved in my memory. He shared with the diplomatic corps and journalists his discussion with the Emperor of Japan who had asked him how a country as rich in natural resources as Venezuela can have 80% of its population living under the poverty line. Chavez confessed that while he welcomed the Emperor’s concern, he was not expecting such a question from him.

The Emperor pinpointed the dilemma Chavez faced all his life: a huge disparity between the rich and the poor. How can it be that Venezuela’s vast natural resources could only benefit the elite? How can such a trend be reversed after plaguing his country for so long? How could anybody convince the country’s privileged class that it is in their interests that the fundamental rights of all Venezuelans are respected? Is it acceptable that foreign companies control 95% of the petroleum reserves of his country?

Fashion Design by Junko Koshino

Written by  |  Published in Fashion Designer

Tokyo's Fashion Queen and Tony Award-nominee Junko Koshino, renowned for her fashion, costume and uniform design, shares the latest in Tokyo's fashion scene.

Junko Koshino

TJ: Can you tell us about your recent projects?
Koshino: In 2012, I did the costume design for The Art of Japan Drum “Drum Tao” and the launch of the Cashmere 2012 Autumn Winter Total Collection Line. Projects in 2013 include the March costume design for the Yuzuru (Twilight Crane) Opera in Vietnam and a museum exhibition in Sao Paulo in November.

TJ: In recent years, what do you think have been the most significant changes in women’s fashion?
Koshino: I think artistic sensitivity has increasingly been freely expressed in women’s fashion designs.

ファッション・衣装・ユニフォームのデザインで知られ、 トニー賞にもノミネートされた東京のファションクイーン コシノ・ジュンコさんに、 東京のファッション・シーンの最新情報を語っていただきました。

TJ: 最近のお仕事についてお聞かせください。
コシノ: 2012 年の活動としては、和太鼓を使っ たアート・パフォーマンス「ドラム・タオ」の 衣装デザイン、カシミヤのトータルコレクショ ンラインのスタート(2012 年秋冬コレクショ ン)などが挙げられます。2013 年には、ベト ナムでのオペラ「夕鶴」公演の衣装デザイン、 11 月のサンパウロのミュージアムでの展覧会 などを予定しています。

TJ: 近年のウィメンズファッションで、最も大 きな変化だと思われるのは?
コシノ: アーティステックな感性がデザインに 現れ、より自由になったと思います。


Fashion Design by Junko Koshino

Written by  |  Published in Fashion Designer

Tokyo's Fashion Queen and Tony Award Nominee Junko Koshino, renowned for her fashion, costume and uniform design, shares the latest in Tokyo's fashion scene.

Junko Koshino

TJ: How did you first get started in fashion design?
Koshino: My mother owned her own clothing boutique in Osaka. Therefore, from early childhood, I was surrounded by design. My older sister, Hiroko, was supposed to take over my mother’s business so I didn’t have to enter the fashion world, and I tried to become interested in other subjects. Before I entered Art College, Hiroko and I went to the same high school. It was a very prestigious one, and we both chose the same art club. I did oil paintings and my sister did water colors. I then went to Art College, but it turned out that the fashion world was my destiny after all. I liked to paint from early childhood, so for me it is very easy to create pictures of design styles. At one point, after I entered Art College, I decided I actually wanted to be a designer instead of a painter. So, I switched my major and I focused on design. This story of my mother and my sisters (who are all fashion designers) was featured on the NHK (Japanese national broadcasting station) Drama “Carnation” in 2011 and 2012.

TJ: Your sisters Hiroko and Michiko are also renowned fashion designers. How often do you keep in touch and do you ever collaborate?
Koshino: We don’t meet very often, about four times a year. Each year, we meet at a very famous festival in our hometown, which is the Kishiwada area of Osaka and also at the Lumiere Vision Exposition in Paris. We sometimes meet for a ceremony in memory of our mother as well. We collaborated for a show for our mother two times a few years ago, but we haven’t collaborated since she passed away.

Movie Subtitling: Natsuko Toda

Written by  |  Published in Translation & Subtitling

Interview series with Japan’s most renowned translator of foreign films and interpreter for Hollywood stars, Natsuko Toda.

TJ: Can you tell us about how you got started in your career?
Toda: I saw a lot of movies in my school days, and I absolutely loved them. After graduating from Tsuda College, I visited Japanese subtitling pioneer Shunji Shimizu to ask about working in the field of movie subtitling. He said mastering the skill was difficult and there weren’t many opportunities for work in the field. But, I was not discouraged. I chose a non-film industry related job and began working at Dai-Ichi Life Insurance Company in the Hibiya area of Tokyo. However, I didn’t abandon my passion for movies. Pretty soon I quit Dai-Ichi Life and began working part-time jobs as a translator. I did all kinds of translations including industrial manuals, magazine articles and books. Eventually, I began doing movie-related translations and dictation for Shimizu sensei, and through this relationship, I was offered the opportunity to interpret at a press conference. It was almost 10 years after I graduated from college before I had the opportunity to be offered the job of subtitling for a Francois Truffaut movie and I was fortunate to have Shimizu Sensei provide advice during that time in my career.

On Tour with Bob Gruen

Written by  |  Published in Music Gallery

Go on tour with legendary rock photographer Bob Gruen, who is one of the most well known and respected photographers in Rock and Roll.

HELLO Japan! I am very happy to have been asked to make a regular feature column for the Tokyo Journal! I thought I would start with a few pictures that show where my career began.

Growing up in the 1950s, I heard rock and roll when it was first played on the radio and I was an immediate fan. After High School in the late sixties, I was living with a rock band and started my career by taking pictures of them. When they were discovered, their record company used my photos and hired me to photograph more groups.

Soon I was working for many record companies and in 1972 I was included in ‘The Photography of Rock’, the first book of rock music photos. The writer, who interviewed me for the book, liked my photos and the following week brought me to his magazine interview with John Lennon and Yoko Ono. John & Yoko liked the photos I took and used one in the package for their next record album. And I’ve been very busy ever since.

Tokyo Journal

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