Friday (18-May-2018) — Japan

Gone to See Japan.  Street Photography Workshop with Steve Simon and Soichi Hayashi. Day 2: Tokyo (Shinjuku Station, Harajuku, Shibuya).

The sky cleared, and the rising sun was reflected into my hotel room off the Tokyo Metropolitan Government building. It took six images to get the entire building in order to generate a composite image. I still need to work a bit on the geometry of the two towers.

Reflections of the Sun Rising. Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building from the Keio Plaza Hotel. Composite of six images taken with a Leica CL camera and 23 mm f/2 lens. Raw images processed with Capture One Pro and AutoPano Giga Pro. (David J Mathre)
Reflections of the Sun Rising. Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building from the Keio Plaza Hotel. Composite of six images taken with a Leica CL camera and 23 mm f/2 lens. Raw images processed with Capture One Pro and AutoPano Giga Pro. (David J Mathre)

The first stop in the morning was the Shinjuku Station. This is the worlds largest and busiest transportation hub. We got there in time to observe the morning rush. I have never seen so many people moving in an almost choreographed manner.  I couldn’t really figure out how to capture the frenetic activity in a single photograph, so decided to make a short time lapse video of passengers entering and exiting at one of the main entrances.

After this I went outside to clear my head and look for another subject. I found a pedestrian bridge where I could watch a busy street crossing from a distance. The folks in Japan only cross at intersections when permitted by a green light. As soon as the green light starts blinking the pedestrians start running to avoid being in the cross walk after the light changes. These images of folks starting to run rather than walk were taken with a Nikon 1 V3 camera with a 70-300 mm VR telephoto lens in burst mode.



In the afternoon we traveled to the famous Harajuku area and Shibuya shopping district. I am starting to lean toward a theme of folks taking pictures with phones, especially if I can see the image within the image on the back of the phone. Despite my preference for B&W, I have to show the two women in Harajuku with brightly colored hair. I noticed a large number of non-Japanese tourists during this walkabout.




Individual images in the slide shows can be viewed here.

Author: David Mathre

I am a scientist by training (Eckerd College, BSc; Caltech, Ph.D.). I worked for 27 years as a Chemist in the Pharmaceutical Industry developing processes to manufacture medicines for human and animal health. I now spend my time as a photographer updating images in My Image of the Day Photoblog, and My eBird (with images of nearly 450 bird species). hope post COVID-19 to be a world traveler again. My interests include the natural world, wildlife, landscapes, sky, and seascapes, travel, and astrophotography. I look for unique ways of viewing the world and presenting my images. I have traveled to over 55 countries in six continents, often on Semester at Sea voyages. While at home in New Jersey, I spend time on home renovation and expansion of a wildflower garden/meadow.

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