Tokyo in Pics


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

Great places to shoot in Tokyo - Takaido

I posted a blog article about Takaido before, but I thought as I wasn’t completely satisfied with those shots I’d try one more time.  The place was once again, the pedestrian bridge along Kanpachi-dori (Kanpachi road). I chose it because it the road is long and straight and always has heavy traffic on it so you can get shots with amazing light trails.  With the approaching cars, on the right side, you get rivers of white lights and on the left side, the receding cars, you get rivers of red. It’s a great place for long exposures.

The light trails of Kanpachi-dori in Tokyo's Suginami ward

To get there, leave the station and walk up the hill past the Ozeki supermarket and move on to the bridge.  Set up camera in the middle and take your shots. Just a note of warning - be really careful with your gear because if you accidentally drop anything over the side there is a good chance that what you drop will fall directly on to the road where cars pass directly below which might be catastrophic.  Also, keep in mind people will also be walking by and as the bridge isn’t that wide you don’t want them tripping over your gear.

The good thing about the bridge is that you can take pictures from both sides, so looking north and south.  The north side gives you the long shot. The south side has a nice curve in the road with the station visible at the bottom, and that looks awesome too, but I’ll be doing that one in a future article.  Cars are plentiful, but there are traffic lights not too far away so there will be occasional break in the traffic so you might want to keep that in mind if you are only taking short exposures.

For the shot you see here, I took a total of five eight-second shots using the focus stacking technique.  All the shots had some adjustments made in Lightroom, then they were exported to Photoshop where, after all the shots were aligned and blended together.  Finally, the Orton Effect was added. I think the picture is fairly good, not great, but fairly good. There is a chance I’ll be doing it again in the future at some point.

If you ever decide to take your own photograph there, I’d love to see your picture!  If you post it on Instagram use the hashtag #tokyoinpics so I’ll see it. And if you have any comments or questions, please post them below.

Equipment for this shot:

Camera - Fujifilm X-T2

Lens - Fufjilm XF 16-55 mm f 2.8 R LM WR


Cable release