If you are ever in Tokyo and see a young woman leaping unabashedly in midair that just might be Natsumi Hayashi photographing herself for her series called “Today’s Levitation.” Amazingly Hayashi uses just an SLR with a self-timer. When the moment strikes, she presses the shutter button down and, literally, “jumps” into place.
As humble as she is charming, Hayashi calls herself yowayowa (weakling) camera woman, poking fun at herself for struggling with the weight of her own camera. In 2009, she began publicly documenting her work in a photo diary. Hayashi’s initial shots show her with her two cats in various domestic scenes. In 2010 the photo-diary took a surprising turn when she started posting photos of herself in mid-air.
Although in the photos Hayashi appears frozen in midair, her work maintains an air of playfulness and spontaneity. When asked about why she took on the series, she replied, “”We are all surrounded by social stress as we are bound by the forces of earth’s gravity… I hope that people feel something like an instant release from their stressful days by seeing my levitation photos.”
For more work by Hayashi, see “More of Natsumi Hayashi levitating in Tokyo, Part 2.”