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Japan: A Study in Colour.

I recently spent two months travelling around Japan, the land of the rising sun. It is an experience I will never forget. I could wander Tokyo for an eternity and still find new areas to explore, the city being so vast and sprawling, with endless laneways forming an intriguing urban maze. Photo opportunities appear at every turn, with Tokyo’s colourful streets being particularly enjoyable to capture on camera. Here are my impressions of this vibrant and intriguing country.

Published November 3, 2017

Country: Japan


Words and Photography by James Weber

Two women walking at low tide towards huge orange gate with green tiled roof in the sea, Japan
The huge torii gate is the characteristic symbol of Itsukushima shrine on Miyajima island, off the coast of Hiroshima. When the tide is in, the gate appears to be floating on the water and is commonly referred to as the ‘floating torii gate’.
Few pedestrians waiting for a whizzing train to go past, Tokyo
Walking around Tokyo, there are numerous train crossings with trains approaching every 10 minutes. The characteristic bell sound as the train approaches can be heard from some distance as the barriers lower down.
Looking out through open lattice doors to a calm and peaceful Japanese garden from a room lined with mats, Osaka
The only temple in Kyoto where one is allowed to walk around inside is Kennin-ji. Having stumbled across this temple by accident, navigating the complex hallways provides a sense of enlightenment and a zen atmosphere when sitting on the straw tatami mats looking at the garden.
Just a person in a typically old-Japan street with pink flowers and lanterns
Located near Shinjuku station, Memory Lane is full of food stalls that sell some great food in the evening and a lively atmosphere. During the daytime, it is eerily quiet despite being in the middle of Shinjuku, with only a few people walking through it.
A pathway under orange, close-set torii gates, Japan
The ten thousand torii gates (Senbon Torii) of Fushimi Inari Taisha in southern Kyoto, line the main path leading to the summit of Mt. Inari. At twilight, the lamps are turned on to create that magical, mystical atmosphere, and if one stays around long enough, one could catch a glimpse of a shinto priest carrying out his last duties of the day.
Pedestrians waiting at a pink-lit pedestrian crossing in Osaka
Commuters wait at the crossing outside the JR station in Osaka. With a lot of road traffic in Osaka, crossings occur every five minutes, meaning a quick dash across if in a rush for the train.
A path through a towering bamboo grove with sunlight filtering through in Japan
A dense bamboo forest on the western side of Kyoto, known as Arashiyama, is the perfect place for admiring the huge, tall bamboos. When a gentle breeze passes by, the bamboos move all together in synchrony and sound like the forest is speaking.
Two women praying at an altar under a red roof, above the bustling crowd on the street below, Tokyo
Sensō-ji Temple is located on the east side of Tokyo. Many visitors visit the shrine each day to pay their respects, with huge numbers visiting during the festivals. Walking up to the main shrine, a long street is lined with stalls filling the air with the delicious smell of food and drinks.
Bright neon sign lit street bustling with only people at night, Japan
Akihabara, also known as Electric Town, is a district in Tokyo known for all things electronics, anime, manga and videogames. On a Sunday between 1pm and 6pm, the main street in Akihabara is closed to traffic, allowing shoppers to roam freely without hindrance.
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