Japan Travel Photos: Tokyo, Kyoto and Niseko


Japan has got to be one of the best places to travel with a camera –  the hyper-industrialised cities, bright lights of the shopping districts, old temples and shrines, not to mention the epic snowscapes. Japan is full of epic visual scenes. And so it was a dream to finally be able to visit Japan this year … for snowboarding, and photography.

Along with what Apple likes to tell us is the “World’s most popular camera” in my pocket at all times, I travelled to Japan with my new Canon EOS 1D Mark IV, a pocket Canon Powershot AS3300 IS and a funny Russian panoramic 35mm film camera, a Horizon Perfekt. Have you had a look at the quick little blog posts of my iPhone photos from Tokyo and Kyoto? Well, here is a selection of my non-iPhone snaps.

I bought the old fashion, fully mechanical Horizon Perfekt from Lomography, and this trip in February was my first real chance to use it (besides one test role). The Perfekt uses a swing lens that moves left-to-right to project a 120-degree-wide image across almost two normal frames of 35mm film. As with any film, and particularly as I wanted to cross-process Fuji slide film, using the Perfekt was a little bit hit or miss – but that’s the fun of film! I took along a digital light meter to try and take some of the exposure setting guesswork out of it, and some of the results came out great.

As it’s taken me so long to post these extra non-iPhone photos, I think in future I’ll travel on non-photographic trips with just the little phone, and maybe a film camera for fun. I hope you enjoy these photos, as much as I enjoyed taking them.

Click on the photos to view them in a pop-up gallery…

To see more from Japan take a look at my iPhone shots from Kyoto and Tokyo.


An iPhone Tourist In Kyoto


Ah, Kyoto. The former feudal capital of Japan and home to 2000 temples and shrines, 17 of them UNESCO World Heritage listed. Yep, it’s a “must see” city in Asia … so, we just had to err, see it.

After zipping through the heavily industrialised countryside of Japan and gazing through the surprisingly small shinkansen (bullet train) windows, first impressions of this city were not good. I wish I had read the Lonely Planet entry for Kyoto before I arrived, because I was expecting a beautiful old place. Instead you are affronted with the typical beige and grey concrete blocks and crowded streetscape. However, when you get out of the city, and find the pockets where the famous temples are, and head to the foothills on each side of the city, then the true magic and hidden beauty of Kyoto becomes apparent. And the traditional feel of the city speaks to you. We even caught a glimpse of a couple of geisha nipping into a restaurant before the start of their night’s entertainment. A rare sight indeed. But sorry, they were so quick in avoiding any cameras that no-one on the street got a photo.

Here’s just a few photos from my iPhone from two days in Kyoto. I took my new Canon 1D Mark IV around with me, but you know what, due to the ease of iPhone-ography, I haven’t even uploaded the shots onto my computer yet to look at them.

But sometime soon I will post some entries with my “proper” photos, and the slide film panoramas from my new Horizon Pefekt camera.

An iPhone Tourist In Tokyo

As I said back in this post, iPhones make it easy nowadays. I downloaded the WordPress app, so we’ll see how this goes posting directly from my phone.

Here’s some iPhone-only photos for my three days in Tokyo. (Well, it looks like it’s a little hard to insert a gallery so this selection below will have to do.)

See more of my iPhone-ography by following me on Instagram @sean_radich.