I’ve wanted to go to Japan ever since I was a little girl. This year, that dream was finally fulfilled. Cherry blossom season starts from the end of March to early April and there is only a short period where you can find the flowers in full bloom. It was always my wish of visiting the country at the height of the season and I’m thankful to say that I definitely hit the mark; as my wonderfully pastel pink photos show. For two whole weeks, I was able to immerse myself in Japanese culture and spend time relaxing on the other side of the world – a much needed escape from reality, where I could go off grid for a little and be present in my surroundings. The vision I had for my photos before I went on the trip was to capture Japan in all its light, airy and whimsical beauty. With the sakura at its finest and how naturally photogenic the country is, my idea became a lot easier to fabricate.
We started out in Tokyo and explored the main districts such as Sibuya, Harajuku and Akihabara. Once you venture your way out of the main busy tourist spots, the side streets we found were the treasures. Architecturally interesting buildings and structures were what drew my attention when I was trying to photograph the spirit of the city. The fish market was a particular highlight for me, which is ironic as I don’t eat fish anymore. We weren’t allowed to take pictures inside but something about the place seemed so quintessentially Japanese that it left a lasting impression in my mind. Despite being a spectator, watching the vendors go on about their business and hurry around made me feel like I was living as a true native.
The time we spent in Kyoto felt a lot more traditional, where tall buildings and neon signs were replaced with shrines and small houses with wooden fronts. A particular favourite of mine was spending an evening wandering through Gion, the famous Geisha district, and going down Shinbashi-Dori which is considered to be one of the most beautiful streets in Asia. We were lucky enough to see some real Geisha in the windows of the tea houses, serving their customers and looking beautiful in their full traditional clothing. I have probably eaten the best food of my life in that short week which was filled with matcha and lunch sets comprised of tofu, pickles, miso and rice.