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First of all, what does ‘stekki’ mean? In Japanese the word is spelled 素敵 or すてき. You would pronounce it su-te-ki.  It’s an adjective, meaning beautiful, great, lovely, splendid, wonderful or nice. People would also use it to describe, for example, someone who looked smart or cool.

We spelled it ‘Stekki’ because, well, it looked kind of cool… kind of Scandinavian. We like Scandinavian design, Japanese design. ‘Stekki’ seemed like a nice way of looking at the word.

So that’s what Stekki means but what do we do and who is behind it?

Stekki started as an idea to showcase the wealth of photographic talent in Japan. The first manifestation of that has been an online magazine.

Alfie Goodrich, founder of Stekki, recently teamed up with photographer and fellow Hasselblad Ambassador, Derek Makishima, to take the project forward. The first development is that Stekki as a magazine will begin to focus more on automotive creativity in Japan.

Why this direction change for Stekki?

Derek and Alfie were asked by the owners of Octane Magazine [Japan] to come up with a concept for a magazine about the Japanese car scene, predominantly the unique creativity, enthusiasm and innovation happening here. The magazine’s main target readership will be people living overseas, to attract them to what is going on here in Japan. Given Derek’s and Alfie’s backgrounds, the magazine will feature photography of the highest quality. Given the fact that the two of them are also lifelong petrol heads, it all proves to be a very exciting project.

A project which has the full backing of Octane Japan and which, for the first four issues, will be exclusively online. The eventual goal will be to bring the magazine to print, maybe within its first six issues but we’ll see. Success online will speed the transition to print.

So, why use the Stekki name? Well, after spending some time trying to think of a decent name for the new magazine… Derek and Alfie reckoned that Stekki was a pretty good name for it.

What happens to the old Stekki?

Nothing really. The strap-line of ‘for lovers of photography and japan’ just expands to ‘for lovers of cars, photography and japan’.

There will still be fashion photography inside the new Stekki.

There will still be issues that have photography that has been shot on photography workshops that Alfie and Derek organise. The difference now is that there will be an automotive element to those workshops.

The long-term goals of Stekki are still to showcase great photography, in the following ways:

  • The formation of an agency to represent and find work for inspiring photographers & visual artists who create inspirational pictures
  • To provide an education programme for those wishing to learn more about photography, whether their goal be personal satisfaction or a career in commercial photography
  • Alongside our commercial operations, to form a body which encourages photographers to meet in person, exchange knowledge, share issues and solve problems

To find out more about Stekki, Derek and Alfie please use the contact form and drop us a line.

If you are interested in getting involved, please drop us a line about how and why you think you can help.


Stekki is the creation of Alfie Goodrich, a British photographer and photography teacher who has been based in Tokyo full-time since 2007. Alfie’s clients span a wide range of photographic genres, from cars to fashion, travel and landscape to editorial features. His photography teaching is with photographers of all skill levels and runs from one-to-one through to small and large group workshops.

Alfie Goodrich by Lisa Fujiwara / Paint With Stars Photography

Photo: Lisa Fujiwara |

Alfie’s working life has not always been spent solely with the camera. He spent some time in the British Army, worked as a chef, was PR director for a record label for eight years and managed another recording company for almost two years. After leaving the music business in 2001, Alfie moved from London back to South Wales and started his own company. That business combined his PR, design and photographic skills to produce websites, brochures, PR campaigns and complete corporate identity packages for a range of clients.

He and his family moved to Japan in 2007 and since then Alfie has concentrated solely on photography, both shooting and teaching.


Check out Alfie’s other photography sites here: