Meditation 4 Madmen presents Ken Nagahara


Cross-promotion is vital in our industry to move forward. Many companies look to one up each other vs. joining forces and working together. Instead, I’m a firm believer that if we work together, we all take a step forward. For example, we currently cross-promote with a few national print magazines and they, in turn, receive love on ChopCult. I’ve been a huge fan of the Meditation 4 Madmen videos for awhile now. Daniel James focuses on the lives of those who contribute to the classic chopper scene from around the world. This is the first of many features from Daniel and we would like to welcome him and Meditation 4 Madmen to the site!



Ever heard of Maslow's hierarchy of needs? This guy Maslow discovered there's an order to what people find as a priority in life. It's simple really. First is shelter, food, air, and water. Second is security and safety. The third is family and friendship. Forth is self-esteem, respect for others and achievement. Last of all is creativity, meaning in life and experiencing purpose. Makes sense right? Most people think so but Maslow found one group of people who completely live outside this hierarchy of needs, they are the Creative, the Artisan or Craftsman.



For example, a photographer consumed by his subject matter will choose a roll of film over buying food, give up the security of home for a life on the road if it means getting that perfect shot. Live away from family and friends if it means being closer to his subject matter. Ken Nagahara is a perfect example of this. 100 percent dedicated to his photography, Ken lives a humble life far away from his family back in his native country of Japan, with no prospect of returning. He came to the US with literally nothing but a dream.



Everything about Ken and how he lives shows devotion to his work. He lives in an old machine shop in Oakland's ghetto. It's been hobbled together over time to house his simple living space, a developing dark room, and a bike building workspace. It's a space that provides no comforts just the total accessibility to create whatever he feels like.



Anyone who knows Ken will tell you he is a professional and a gentleman. Most people go their whole life without achieving their dreams. Ken Nagahara is living his. We took the time to hear his thoughts.


Ken Nagahara from Meditation 4 Madmen on Vimeo.


The Meditation 4 Madmen videos are made possible through our generous sponsors and t-shirt sales. Check out our website or Instagram for more information.


- Daniel James

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Comment with Chopcult (2)

Commented on 8-11-2014 At 09:52 am

Check their website out, cool vids.

Commented on 8-13-2014 At 02:58 am

Always a pleasure to run into Ken and get to hang out.

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