Whew! I can definitely call this year’s Sakura coverage a success on my end. After scoping out locales in Yokohama and executing my photography plans at the right time, it was just a matter of a few more days before the area’s cherry blossoms would begin to fall to the ground, almost all at once! In an effort to get more of the “big-city” picture, I managed to catch time for one last trip for hanami-hunting, this time in everyone’s favorite megacity, Tokyo!
For the first stop of the day, a friend and I got off the train at Suidobashi Station to head to Koishikawa Korakuen Gardens, possibly the oldest preserved garden in Tokyo. Built by the founder of the Mito branch of the Tokugawa clan in 1629, the garden is nearing 400 years old among Tokyo Dome and other sprawling high-rises. The garden is circuit-style, with a well-defined path throughout its entirety. The garden only has about a dozen or so cherry blossom trees, but that doesn’t stop it from being a local hotspot for hanami-seekers.
With the sun already getting low in the sky (still waiting for those long, generous summer days of sunshine!), I made my way to Ueno Park, one of the most popular Sakura spots in Japan! For some reason, the trees here bloom a few days before most other cherry trees in Tokyo, and for that reason, the park’s “Cherry Blossom Street” tunnel of flowers attracts hundreds of thousands—if not millions—of visitors every year. Despite almost all the trees showing their past-peak trademark of falling petals, the crowds were still surprisingly large.
Just outside Ueno Park is a nice pedestrian scramble complete with an impossibly-thin cornerstone building.
As blue hour came and went I packed up my camera gear and ate at a local ramen hotspot (readers should know by now ramen is my go-to comfort food in Japan) called Ichiran, known for their spicy tonkatsu broth. The 20-person line of people out the door proved to be a great indicator of the restaurant’s quality! Without a tripod in hand, and the mid-spring chill setting in for the night, I headed on back to Yokosuka yet again, but not before seeing one of the many Mario Kart troupes speeding along the tourist circuit.
Of course, no travel series nowadays can go without a bit of video experimentation with my a6500. I’m getting decently comfortable at some of the trickier sides of exposing and processing video properly, but I am having a bit of trouble getting enough dynamic range for more malleability in FCPX. I may try one of the S-Log settings soon for a more flat base recording.
That’s all for this post, guys and gals, and it concludes my three-part series on the great Sakura season in my region of Japan! If you missed the first two posts, check here and here. As always, thanks for dropping by and have a great day!
P.S. The cherry blossoms right on base put out a great show this year, as well!