Walter Shintani Continues to Crush WM’s “Creative In Place” Requests

Jun 24, 2020
Photographer Spotlight

What happens when you ask hundreds of creative people to make intriguing imagery out of mundane, everyday activities? You get a wide swath of interpretations, a nice collection of shots, and, every so often, a photographer like Mexico City-based Walter Shintani, who stretches his — and our — imagination.

Every week, Wonderful Machine has asked its members to get shots of them or their family members that fit the broad parameters of a given theme. The project is called “Creative In Place.” As an example, one week we’ll ask photographers to send us shots of them cooking. Another week it was imagery based on the topic of companionship. Vague, one-word asks can lead to all kinds of work, including the eye-catching stuff that Walter has delivered each time.

I thought it was a great way to know more about each other around the globe, and the fact [the brief] says “stretch the creative muscle” let me know that WM was concerned about keeping up the good spirit in this dark season.


Walter Shintani During COVID Walter fulfills the food ask


Walter’s favorite shot was the one you see above, which was his interpretation of the theme “cooking.”

I normally spend a lot of time in the kitchen, and it was a fun way to do this ask.

Like many creatives in all sorts of fields, Walter is pop culture fluent. The Mexico City-based photographer made sure to include a reference of some kind in each shot — no matter how obscure — for each image. Aside from “Cooking,” Walter sent us his takes on “Home Improvement” and “Companionship.”

Walter Shintani During COVID Walter makes a gif

All have been movie or art references. I think we in this industry have embedded images from all we consume, and when the challenge comes up, you start “cooking” imagery to start playing with ideas.

Walter Shintani During COVID Walter lives alone I think

I like the idea of shooting these because they give me a moment to share myself with everyone. 

Walter Shintani Creative In Place Consumer Electronics submission

Walter has not only enjoyed making images, he’s loved the idea of seeing everyone else’s work as well. He sees “Creative In Place” as Wonderful Machine’s way of connecting people across the globe.

My friends enjoy it when I share the blog and they’re happy to see every ideas of every member photographer. It’s cool to see how diverse we all are and what make this exercise interesting to enrich our vision of the world.

Check out more of Walter's work at

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Check out how WM is helping photographers during the pandemic on our COVID-19 Resources page.