Saturday, July 21, 2007

Views from Tokyo Part I

A few photos I took over the past few days...


Because of earthquakes, most wiring in the Tokyo area is above ground (something fairly rare in Europe, but somewhat frequent in the US). As a result, every 20 or so meters, one encounters one of these huge transformers. They may seem fairly unesthetic, but they somehow seem to fit in with the general vibe of Tokyo (even in richer, leafier neighbourhoods like Setagaya). They also serve as a reminder of how electricity Japanese society is (as are most first world countries). I think I'll take a few more pictures of these things and build a collection.


Another one.


A street in the upper-crust neighbourhood of Seta-gaya. It must cost a small fortune to own a house here, given the collection of luxurious import cars parked in front of each one of them. A very nice place for a morning stroll, away from the hustle and bustle of the main roads.


One of the few traditional houses around St Mary's. Hard to believe this is in an urban metropolis like Tokyo, eh?


The view, from just a few steps away from the house pictured above.


I just thought this looked cool...


This sort of set of stairs is fairly common in hilly Tokyo. Going down...


... and coming back up.


Looks like a quaint little stream, eh? Good thing you can't smell a photograph...


Very totalitarian looking luxury apartments between Setagaya and Futako-Tamagawa, suitably named "Setahaus".


A small thingamabob the size of a credit-card, which you might notice on the ground near "Setahaus". Marks the beginning of Setagaya-ku (hence the arrow).


A pointless shot which turned out nicely. I was trying to see how my camera would fare at high shutter-speeds by taking a picture of a flashing light.


Some interesting architecture. Loads of weird and wonderful constructions like this, across the Big Mikan. Expect more pictures like this... may more.


I thought this lone house, isolated from other buildings by some rough (soon to be built on) ground, made for a nice photo.


A common site in high-pedestrian-traffic areas like Shibuya or Shinjuku (the latter, in this case): politicians sending representatives (or representing themselves) to canvas directly to the public. Here, some (presumably) washed-out pop-star singing some encouraging songs to support his favourite candidate. Wasn't too impressive, musically, although it was a riot picturing similar political tactics in France or the UK.


More interesting architecture. A bank of sorts, I believe.


The slogan/name "Universal Language" appealed to the philosophy of language geek inside me. I'm not a chomskian though, I swear! Once again, a cool fa├žade which somewhat resembles the contents of a rather large library shelf.


A common view in areas like Shibuya or Shinjuku: shedloads of people walking around, people yelling to try and get you into their store, and big-ass screens and adverts everywhere.



This was taken around 3.30am (jet-lag!), while experimenting with long exposure times (15s), to take pictures in low-light conditions. The result was somewhat interesting, but not quite what I expected. I decided to keep the photo anyway...


Ditto above: early morning, experimenting with shutter-speed and ISO settings. This picture has a slightly surrealist feeling to it, hence its place in my collection. The blurring is accidental, but somehow works with the mood at the time (ie. me being half awake before 4am).

1 comment:

Jim Casper said...

Wow, I feel like I know the place a little already. Really great photos, and the captions are perfect. I am especially drawn to the quirky things that you have chosen to photograph: exactly the kinds of pleasantly strange details that a traveller notices with fresh eyes and an open mind. Hats off!

--Jim