Recent Work: REKROW Denim

Last year the wonderful Sayaka Toyama got in touch with me and wanted to know if I’d like to spend 3 days in Hiroshima making a reel about the denim industry there. I was of course very pleased to do it- Hiroshima is a wonderful area and I’m always fascinated to visit the workplaces of people in Japan, as I did when I made my book Handmade in Japan. 

The client in question was REKROW, which is an amazing company that repurposes used denim into cool new products. The source of this used denim is the workwear of Tsuneishi Shipyards - a massive ship building factory on the Seto inland sea. The official work uniform of their engineers and workers are these denim coveralls which already look amazing - once they become too damaged to wear on site REKROW inherits them, breaks them down and uses the raw scraps to collaborate with various artists in making bags, shows, furniture and so on. The natural wear on the work garb lends to an amazing variety of textures and hues, which is great for artistic expression once broken down. 

We shot over three days, starting with the factories where denim is manufactured and refined, moving on to the shipbuilding yards at Tsuneishi (boat ride woo!), and squeezing in an interview in the evening. The third day was a visit to the beautiful town of Tomonoura to see the finished products as bedcovers in a series of beautiful old restored villas. Edit was done in house and incorporated interviews shot separately with collaborating designers in LA.  

Big thanks to Hamish Campbell for assisting and supplying the Sachtler Flowtech tripod and Small HD monitor, and the good folks at REKROW who set up a beautiful tour of the denim scene in Hiroshima! You can see the finished product below.

Using Format