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Sanja Festival, Asakusa

Sanja Festival, Asakusa

The wildest & most interesting Tokyo festival, Asakusa Sanja Matsuri. Sharing my selective photographs from the 2nd day of this great event.

Photo Walk: Roppongi Halloween

Photo Walk: Roppongi Halloween

Roppongi Halloween, Tokyo Japan. Japanese Halloween is amazing, everything goes; manga characters, TV idols, ghostsy costumes and of course lots of random stuff. Great place to photograph on the street.

Autumn is coming- SANMA Festival

Autumn is coming- SANMA Festival

Welcome to Autumn! This once a year Sanma (Pacific Saury) Festival in Meguro will make your mouth watery. The festival is held every year in early September where 6,000- 7,000 sanma are grilled and given away!

Stranger Project III

Stranger Project III

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Well, Im not gonna be shy about this as I approach people and ask for a permission to snap their photo all the times. It's a pity when seeing someone with a unique look on the street and regret it at home not getting a shot.  

I have asked and spoken to all strangers's photos below and they're all cool about it. Big thanks to all beautiful strangers out there!

P.S. The model on top of the page is from the shop, 'Oz Abstract' in Ura Harajuku, pls support him if you pass by: http://www.oztokyo.com/jp

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The Abandoned: Queen Hotel

The Abandoned: Queen Hotel

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I have seen several examples of urban exploration/ haikyo and decided for a quick trip to try it out myself. This place, Queen Hotel was a love hotel situated in suburban not too far from Tokyo. I think it was discovered several years back when lots of things inside the room were still in place. However, during my visit, the place seems like it went thru a civil war where most stuff was torn apart and the access was totally sealed from the outside world.. L1010658

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My 3rd Asakusa Samba Carnival

My 3rd Asakusa Samba Carnival

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Think the first time I went was in 2010, then I was there again in 2012 and this year. One thing that I have started to realize is that the festival seems to become more & more of a fancy parade with Brazil + etc. related theme on top of a carnival touch. I mean in a positive way, this is what I like about Japanized events, anything goes. Rather than focusing only on hot dancers like the original carnival, they make it more elaborated with wider and creative ideas integrated into each team's parade & costume. Interesting themes/ concepts include Hawaiian, Alien (see below), some kind of Gladiator (see below), bugs/ insects, etc. I mean I really admire their creativity, although not very sure about the relation to the samba carnival :D I believe it makes the event more interesting  and dynamic, you dun really know what to expect and you can be sure that the scene will always be fresh every year. Another point to add is their costumes/ props' seriousness, every piece looks really fantastic. It gives an idea that they carefully decorate and didn't pick it randomly from a 100-yen store.

(M-E + Canon 85/1.8 LTM)

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-The Bug Theme-

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-Gladiator-

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I really like this one, they made it like the airport.

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-The Alien-

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-Da Police-

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The Way I spent 2012

The Way I spent 2012

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1 These are just random events/ things/ places I went/did/ visited in 2012. Some are my favorite photos whereas some are something worth recalling and remembering. Here are how I spent my 2012, how did you spend yours?

January-  I had a chance to reunite with my classmate from a high school in NZ where I was back in 1998/ 1999. Time really flies by..Great to see you, Lilly!

(M8 + Summicron 35/2 pre-ASPH V.2)

Jan Reunion

February- It was my first time going to CP+ event at Pacifico Yokohama, this is one of the major camera & stuff events being held annual. There was a photo exhibition dedicated to 3/11 incident and its aftermath. Fight Fukushima!

(iPhone 4s)

Feb CP+ 2012

March- It's month where actions started happening, the beginning of Spring. Although there are some early sakura, I particularly like this photo of Ume (plum) flower.

(M8+ Jupiter 85/2 LTM)

Mar Ume

April- This was when Spring was in a full swing and lots of things to see here and there. Despite the popular of sakura, Im gonna go with my favorite shot at Hitachi Kaihin Koen (Seaside Park). The doggy happened to sit there and I managed to take a nice snap of him/ her with pink tulips as foreground.

(M8 + Voigtlander Nokton 35/1.2 ASPH V.2)

Apr HitachiKaihin

May- It's definitely has to be the solar eclipse of May 2012. It didn't last very long but it was amazing to observe this phenomena. This picture was taken somewhere in Roppongi. Did you see it?

(M8 + Summicron 35/2 pre-ASPH V.2)

May Eclipse

June- Having watched Iris, the popular KDrama some years ago, the scene is always trapped in my head. Somehow, this year my gf and I decided to finally visit the place, Tazawa-ko in Akita prefecture. I know sooner or later, this has to be done!

(M8 + Summicron 35/2 pre-ASPH V.2)

June Tazawako

July- Upon entering of Summer, what could be better than gathering in Yoyogi Park and expressing your concerns about Nuclear power usage. The No Nuke gathering drew quite an army of supporters with a mix of rally, concert and activities to promote green power. It was said to attract 150,000 people at that evening.

(M8 + Canon 100/2 LTM)

July No Nuke

August- I didn't realize how much I enjoyed seeing this festival until I went there again this year (2013). Several happened simultaneously within this month: Asakusa Samba and Super Yosakoi; but nothing beat Koenji Awaodori. I like this photo a lot, I happened to stand where this grandpa who just finished his dance giving a high five to his grandchild, very sensational.

(M8 + Canon 50/0.95)

Aug Koenji Awaodori

September- Nothing fancy here, didn't really find lots of inspirations as there was no major happening. Managed to find some nice cosmos field in the middle of Tokyo (think this was at Hamarikyu Park in Shiodome).

(M8 + Canon 50/0.95)

Sep Cosmos

October- Might be a little early, but leaves started to change their colours. We had a chance to get some fresh air outside of Tokyo, photo was taken at Shiodamachi, Nagano-ken.

(M8 + Summicron 35/2 ASPH)

Oct Nagano

November- This is the peak of foliage in many parts of Japan, I remember cruising thru the super crowded street and zillion of people in Arashiyama last year. But it was amazing, IMO Arashiyama foliage is second to none. However, this year we happened to be in Miyajima when the timing was perfect. I would say the colours were like 70% out and the tourist army was at its peak.

(M-E + Summicron 35/2 ASPH)

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December- The weather became pretty cold by this time, already said goodbye to all the summer festival, foliage, and most of outdoor fun... Well, on the other hand, it's a good opportunity to see plenty of illuminations. Somehow, Japanese are quite fond of lighting up the places in winter. This was at Toshimaen amusement park.

(M-E + Canon 50/0.95)

Nov Toshimaen

Rin | Charles (Pre-Wed)

Rin | Charles (Pre-Wed)

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Celebrating my 1st blogging experience with my 1st pre wedding shooting (^o^)v I have known Rin & Charles for several years thru a graduate school, they're planning their big day in May 2013. The moment Rin asked me to take their pre wedding photo, I didn't even think about it and simply agreed (while having some ideas popped up in my head). We set out on a good Sunday and picked a few memorial spots for the couple. We started a day around 10-ish and headed to the river bank near Rin's apartment, then the shooting began....

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'Beginning of the Journey'- Leica M-E with Summicron35/2 ASPH

After a few good shots and sun burn, we moved to Ginza as Rin & Charles wanted. In the afternoon on every weekend, the road in Ginza turns into a walking street where pedestrians sit, walk a dog, or just stroll along the luxury neighborhood.

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'Hush'- Leica M-E with Canon 85/1.8 LTM

Ginza is always vibrant with fabulous shop displays and tourists, I felt bad for the couple as they were posting in the middle of the road surrounded by a tourist army, local shoppers, strangers...and a very cold wind ;(

We then looked for the greenery and a little but of Japanese touch, Hamarikyu Garden in Shiodome provided a superb spot for our shooting.

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'Violently in Love'- Leica M-E with Sonnetar 50/1.1

More photos from the park, it was such a lovely day to attract colours from the nature (:

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'Reconciled'- Leica M-E with Sonnetar 50/1.1

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'Serene'- Leica M-E with Summicron 35/2 ASPH

Rin really wanted to take their photo at Odaiba, the famous man-made island, where she & Charles usually spend their time at. As the sun started to leave the sky, without a tripod, my life was hell as I have to reply on my shaky hands...

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'A Tourist Shot'- Leica M-E with Sonnetar 50/1.1

The weather was cold, we were all worn out, but there was one last spot left...The day wouldn't be completed without the scene with an Eifel-tower-like, Tokyo Tower. We decided to base ourselves and take a shot from Roppongi.

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'Bubbly Dream' - Leica M-E with Summicron 35/2 ASPH

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'Just the two of Us'- Leica M-E with Sonnetar 50/1.1

Before starting to do this pre wedding photo session, I thought I'd screw up a big time since I've never done it. I think the result was quite pleasing and we really had a great time. Wishing Rin & Charles a happily ever after!

 Special Thanks to Karens for your hard work with a reflector!

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