Jean B - Bienvenue au Japon !
Recently, I made good on a long-standing desire with a visit to Japan. The Land of the Rising Sun is that and so much more: beautiful nature, beautifully natured people, paradoxical and, at times, incomprehensible. Whether in villages or cities, people go about their lives in meticulous, diligent, but never predictable ways, governed by unique quirks that are both endearing and exasperating.
Photography, especially street and people photography if not embraced, is certainly tolerated. Never did I face hostility when my camera was turned towards passersby or on scenes where people were clearly in the frame. At worst, I would receive a polite wave of the hand requesting that I not proceed.
Photographing Tokyo is an overwhelming proposition. I felt like a kid turned loose in the world’s largest candy shop, with engaging and compelling images around every corner. And, of course, it was Sakura time: cherry blossoms 24/7. People are in a trance, incapable of satiating their appetites to photograph and be photographed with the pinkish-white flower. Cameras are everywhere. I got caught up in the fervor, trying to capture the happy phenomenon.
I decided not to post any of these photos, ’cause I’m not a nature photographer. I’ll stick to the other nature: human nature! One cannot help but be touched by the civility and the genuinely accommodating disposition of the Japanese.