Raw elements: Highlighting 10 of the finest and freshest ingredients in Japanese cuisine
Publication: Vault Magazine
Publisher: ABS-CBN Publishing, Inc.
Photographer: Pat Mateo
Writer: Patricia Tumang
Illustrator: Kendrick Bautista
Special thanks to Norimasa Kosaka, executive chef of Yakumi at Solaire Resort & Casino
Notes on creative direction
Freshness is key to Japanese cuisine, where many ingredients are presented raw. At Solaire's Japanese restaurant Yakumi, we photographed fine raw ingredients, many flown in fresh from Japan. My goal for this shoot was to highlight the raw beauty of the food, no props, only subtle gestures and styling. A plain white background and soft lighting shows off the symmetry and color of the lobster, the alternating rhythm of the hamo pieces, the sinuous curves of filleted fish, the lines and textures of shellfish. On the page, these contrasts and complements are further set off through pairings. The story is punctuated at the end with a manga-style primer on dining etiquette in a traditional sushi-ya.