Hina Matsuri Dolls
May 23, 2021
I’m afraid I have forgotton exactly where I came across this display of Hina Matsuri dolls, other than that it was in a small temple somewhere in the North East of Tokyo. I have since read that these are displayed by families on Girls Day on the 3rd March each year to pray for the healthy growth of young girls. I believe that sometimes Temples take old, discarded dolls and display them for a while as a kind of memorial service for them before storing them away, or, in some cases burning them to release their spirits.…
Towers of Glass
May 23, 2020
Tokyo has many stunning towers of glass, and this one, the newish Kitte building on the south side of Marunouchi Plaza, is one of my favourites. Here looking especially beautiful against a clear blue winter sky. The viewing platform from where this photograph was taken is the perfect location for looking out over the plaza and Tokyo Station too.
Apr 29, 2020
Marunouchi Plaza is one of my favourite public spaces in Tokyo. There is an endless variety of contrasting architectures to look at and explore, not to mention some very fine vantage points for viewing the surrounding area. From the new post office building (where this photograph was taken from) to the wonderful Tokyo Station and even looking down Gyoko-dori towards the Imperial Palace there is so much to see and explore from this space.…
Roof Tiles and Rain Chains
Apr 29, 2020
I love Japanese roof tiles. Their texture, shape, glaze and colours are a major contributor to the appeal of temples and other traditional Japanese buildings. Another fascinating element of such buildings are the rain chains, or kusari-doi, that so much more elegantly deal with off-roof water flow than the usual drainpipe. This photograph is of part of the Jyokan-ji temple near Minowa Station. It lies right on the boundary of the Arakawa and Tatio wards which is a fascinating area to explore
Apr 13, 2020
You do not have to travel far from the polished city centre before you start to see shops and stores that have been shuttered for the last time. Whilst it can be sad to see, and often fills my mind with the ghosts of happier days, the slow ageing of the materials is beautiful in its own right.
Pink, white and blue
Mar 30, 2020
This office block in Sumida City caught my eye, the very man made colour framed by the pink, white and blue of nature. It overlooks the Sumida River Park, a very pleasant long thin park whose pathways mark the boundary between many of the eastern and western districts of Sumida ward.
Mar 06, 2020
There is something tidy and considerate about the Japanese people. It is something I became aware of on my first visit and something that I feel has improved the way I behave. In this scene you can see that even on the edges of the big city the ubiquitous vending machines are used to a much greater extent than the provided bins can cope with. And yet the discarded tins are arranged as neatly as can be managed, awaiting collection and recycling.…
Feb 22, 2020
Rust is a universal sign of decay, and it may suprise some that you do not have to travel far in Tokyo to see it. Here, in northern Tokyo, two well rusted bicycles stand guard outside an apparantly abandoned store like the guardian sentinals outside a shrine. You can see rust stains on the road suggesting the bikes have been in situ for quite some time, giving the impression the road is rarely travelled.…
Jan 25, 2020
Tokyo Station is an immense building with an amazing history. Here is the south side of the station, and the central dome. It sits astride a massively complex transit system nexus and a vast underground shopping mall. With trains and metros, taxis, busses and coaches it truely is a location where journeys begin, end and transition.
Count the buildings
Jan 10, 2020
The variety in size, design, colour, texture and function of buildings in Tokyo never ceases to amaze and fascinate me. Looking east from the superb vantage point of the Skytree out over Kyojima and Yahiro, I wonder how many buildings there are in this one small area of the city. I wonder if any two are the same. The windows are like stars in the sky or grains of sand on a beach - uncountable.…