<This post contains 7 photos>
In our travels, we always come across merchandise displayed in shop windows.
I like window shopping- different cultures have their way of displaying merchandise.
The way merchandise are displayed in Japan is quite interesting and unique.
The shops are full of colors and vibrancy which are unique to their culture.
The following images were all taken in Shinkoku, Japan.
The first image is taken at the Towel Museum, the colors are just interesting.
Near to the Kintai bridge is this small shop which sells ice cream with 100 flavors – 100 flavors is their selling point – and there was a long queue of visitors waiting to buy.
Pottery shop alongside a waterway in Shinkoku.
Traditional lanterns displayed in the window shop.
Never saw an optical shop in such attractive colors – on first sight, I thought it was for something else.
Bags! These are what ladies are looking for.
Umbrellas – it is good that they still have specialty shops for umbrellas and fabric. Where I am based, all umbrella shops are closed because of the high shop rental and that umbrellas are now available at such a competitive price.
The world of merchandise is just a world of colors on display!
Here are two images of babies with a lot of contrasts between them.
The first one was taken in Japan.
I seldom take pictures of pictures. However, I have taken this from a photo by the side of a photo shop in Shinkoku, Japan.
I was attracted by the expression on his face and the seemingly large head when compared with his body.
The second photo was taken by Jennie, my sister-in-law, in Botswana.
It is the image of a baby girl of the Bushman tribe – an image I have shown before.
There is so much contrast between the two – one with white skin, eye almost closed, well dressed while the other is almost naked (apart from the necklace), dark skin, large and hopeful eye. They are of course from different parts of the world and so far apart.
To me, one represents joy while the other represents hope – and we need them both, as they are the Future of Humanity!
I was thinking of posting something on the Itsukushima Shrine, but never have the time to do it.
It would be a simpler task if I just concentrate on some of the things I saw – the Lions.
I have taken pictures of at least three Lions
Even when we alight the ferry and walked towards the shrine, there are various statutes, including Lions (second picture) alongside the seaside walk to the shrine.
Right at the waterfront of the shrine is a Lion (first picture)which is quite unusual in its sculpture. This lion looks powerful and photogenic.
In the nearby courtyard of the shrine, I also found a stone lion (last picture), which seems to be playful.
Lions have a special meaning in the Oriental culture, something which Orientals will revere.
This perhaps is my most liked image on Silhouette.
The image was taken in the aquarium in Okinawa, Japan.
The objects of the photos are not just the fishes swimming happily in the aquarium but also the visitors who appear as silhouettes against the blue aquarium waters.
Just from the silhouettes, it is clear that the visitors were having an enjoyable moment – pointing fingers at the passing stingrays or getting the fishes photographed with their mobiles or cameras.
I also had an enjoyable moment there getting both the fishes and the visitors photographed.
Well, everybody was preoccupied and having fun!
The picture was taken in the Towel Museum, Imabari, on one of my recent trips to Japan.
For those who have not been to this Tower Museum, I append below an introduction from this Museum:
There probably aren’t many towel museums around the world, so if you want to visit one before you die, you had better come to Imabari, Ehime. Here there’s a towel museum of unparalleled size and splendor. The reason for having a towel museum is that Imabari has a long history of producing towels, but competition overseas has meant that ‘just towels’ are a difficult sell. Ehime is responding by bringing a new design sensibility and quality with the aim of differentiating its towel products. So the museum represents something of a challenge to the rest of the towel-producing world.
They have a variety of exhibits showing how towels can be used in daily life and they have a shop too.
This is one of their exhibits – I am sure they are having a wonderful time and a leisurely dialogue over the dining table!
This post features trees the image of which I have taken in my recent trip to the Ritsurin Garden, Japan.
They are ‘sculpting’ trees. Japanese have taken great efforts to sculpt them so that they look like works of art and not just part of nature.
I am not aware of any better description of these trees than those given in the Wikipedia which I am reproducing below in italics:
Niwaki is the Japanese word for “garden trees”. Niwaki is also a descriptive word for highly ‘sculpting trees’.
Most varieties of plants used in Japanese Gardens are called niwaki. These trees help to create the structure of the garden. Japanese gardens are not about using large range of plants, rather it is about creating atmosphere or ambiance. The technique of niwaki is more about what to do with a tree than the tree itself. While Western gardeners enjoy experimenting with a wide range of different plants, Japanese gardeners experiment through training and shaping a relatively limited set of plants.
Trees play a key role in the gardens and landscapes of Japan as well as being of important spiritual and cultural significance to its people. Fittingly, Japanese gardeners have fine-tuned a distinctive set of pruning techniques meant to coax out the essential characters of niwaki. Niwaki are often cultivated to achieve some very striking effects: trees are made to look older than they really are with broad trunks and gnarled branches; trees are made to imitate wind-swept or lightning-struck trees in the wild; Cryptomeria japonica specimens are often pruned to resemble free-growing trees.
Some designers are using zoke (miscellaneous plants) as well as the niwaki to create a more “natural” mood to the landscape. Most traditional garden designers still rely primarily on the rarefied niwaki palette. The principles of niwaki may be applied to garden trees all over the world and are not restricted to Japanese Gardens.
I have taken five or six photos of this Japanese footbridge at the Ritsurin garden in Shinkoku, Japan.
Except for one of the photos, all photos have some visitors on the footbridge; this is not something I want.
I waited for a long while to get my only photo without any people on it; that photo was published recently under the post “Monet’s Japanese Footbridge?”.
Originally, this photo has one man standing at the top of the arch bridge, he also has one hand holding an umbrella against the bridge deck.
With a computer software, using the “Clone and Heal” function, I have successfully removed the man from the image!
For readers with sharp eyes, you may be able to see a dark blue umbrella freely standing on its own near to the top of the footbridge.
Is this magical!
For comparison, the original photo is attached.