Japan Photo Gallery
The night lights of Osaka. This is the famous Guriko neon advert. Guriko are sweets the claim being, if you eat one you can run 300 meters. As a cultural landmark this view is as famous in Osaka as the Coke neons of Piccadilly Circus, are in London.
The golden palace of Kyoto. The picture is very deceiving, it looks peaceful but behind me are about 700 tourists. Still, its a very beautiful place. Unfortunately, this scan has not captured the depth of colour of the original print, so much for digitising.
I really like photographs taken at night and Japans cities offer tremendous scope for this type of photography. There is so much ambient light you can get great results, often getting shots you could not achieve in a western city. This for example was only taken on a simple point and shoot camera, not a great photograph yet the result is quite pleasing. I went to the dome to watch a boxing match with a friend, however the person we went to see lost. Oh well.
Unfortunately, I can't remember the name of this place. My friend took me there as it was their home country. It was very beautiful and this photograph does it no justice. We walked up the hill to the village and ate some Ramen at a restaurant, then drove to my friends Grandfathers house in a town nearby. We went into his shop and met Grandmother then I was sat down next to Grandfather while the women went off to make tea. It was only then I realised Grandfather was asleep. So I sat patiently waiting for the tea to arrive. A couple of minutes later, however, Grandfather woke up. He looked very surprised to see this Gaijin (foreigner) sitting at his table warming himself on the Kotatsu (heater). He said nothing so I introduced myself in my best Japanese. He didn't reply. I tried to explain I was a friend of his grand child but he did not seem to understand, he just sat and stared at me. I was beginning to get very uncomfortable when Grandmother arrived with the tea. She shouted something at the poor man and he pulled a small box from his pocket. I slowly realised that this was a deaf aid. No wonder he could not understand me, It wasn't my bad Japanese, he couldn't hear me. I grinned widely as I saw the funny side of this and the old gentleman responded with an equally broad grin. Later, he explained to me how he had modified his deaf aid with tin foil to make it more efficient. He must have been nearly 80 years old and still running his electrical store.
I have been very lucky with my friends in Japan. They have taken me into their homes and some into their hearts also.
Shinjuku Stations Bands
Saturday night outside the East exit of Shijuku Station you will find all types of bands vying with each other to get the attention of the many young people who go to watch them. Some of the bands are very good. These photographs were taken of the Shinjuku Shit Band as they played opposite Studio Alta in the square. The band were playing punk style rock and roll and drew quite an audience. I would like to take more photographs of the Shijuku bands next time I go back to Japan.