Tokyo in Pics


A photography blog about Tokyo, run by Australian photographer Rohan Gillett

Revisiting the Cherry Blossoms on the Kanda River - 2018

As you probably know, it was only a short time ago that I published some photos about the cherry blossoms on the Kanda River near Takaido station, which is very close to where I live.  As soon as I hit the publish button though, I realized I had made a big mistake.  A BIG mistake.  What mistake?  They were just like every other photo I had ever taken there for the last five or six years.  Exactly the same.  Taken from the same places at roughly the same time.  Just repeating what I had been doing every year.  Pretty silly.

The sun going down over Takaido's cherry blossoms

Don’t get me wrong, as I like those photos, no matter how many times I see them.  After all, the cherry blossoms on the Kanda River are beautiful.  But isn’t it about time I put out something new?  I think it is a pattern with my photographs.  Like a safety blanket, just doing the safe things over and over.  It was bugging me.  So, when I had a rare weekday afternoon off, even though I was tired, I loaded up the camera again and headed back out.  I really wanted to get something that looked a little different.

That morning I’d already been all the way over to the Sumida River, an hour’s train ride away, and taken six hundred photos which had taken another few hours.  Seriously, I was tired.  But I really wanted to do something a little different.  So, in the end I’m very glad I dragged myself down to the river as I think I did get something a little different.  And it was different because I was able to get some shoots during that fabulous, “Golden Hour”, when the sun is low to the horizon and the light becomes soft.

A beautiful moon lighting up Tokyo's skies during the cherry blossom season of 2018

There were people on their way home from work, a few families with babies and/or dogs, enjoying their time photographing the trees.  I think it was my first time to shoot cherry blossoms in the evening.  And to top it off, we even had the moon with us.  It was great shooting in the evening light.

The Kanda River near Takaido station is really beautiful, but I've never seen it really crowded

In the end though, it was kind of funny shooting something because I had no plan.  With the light starting to turn golden, I just couldn’t make up my mind and just ended up doing everything completely random.  A few steps one way, take a pic and then move back in the direction I had just came from.  It was a little silly, but I think I got some good pictures.

The Kanda River during cherry blossom season, and I'm perfectly happy

Next year my next target is to do the same with places like Chidorigfuchi, as that is another place I always shoot in the same style.  I don’t know what I’m going to do with that one as it has only limited space to work in, long and narrow, just like the Kanda River.  If I can ever arrange my time, I’ll try for a night shoot there too.  That might be asking too much though with my kind of luck.

This is definitely the last of my Kanda photographs for 2018.  Hopefully you’ve seen my other pictures of the cherry blossoms at this great spot. If you haven’t click here to see the article.  I’ve got one or two more cherry blossom articles still to come, so if that is what you like, come back and check soon!