Monday, March 29, 2010

Fuji is with me all the time

I often exchange it for lunch or paper and pens. I love the pattern and detail of the border and "negative" space.

Friday, March 26, 2010


Heading back to Tokyo, today was sunny with clouds, so was not sure how Fuji will appear. But as there is still probably a fair amount of snow on the peak I thought it would most likely be shrouded in clouds, but as I had never seen this view I was pretty excited about being close enough to get that vista.

The first shot is of one of the rivers on the edge of Nagoya so you can see how the sky mostly was that day and appreciate the micro climate that Fuji produces with its height and snow expanse.

Asakusa onsen

I haven’t blog about this Fuji experience yet. And rushing now to get out the door of the couch surfed place so will update… yes yes…

Monday, March 22, 2010

stamp 2

Takao-san- I still owe the entry for this one

first drawing for rubber stamp

As you can see refers to my arrival. They are getting made at Federal in MArrickville- Federal are cheaper and faster than rubber stamp makers here in Japan.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Fuji is in my room in Beppu

and there is no way you can see it from here. Although there is a Fuji-look-alike here- I only just worked that out this afternoon in an onsen selling Beppu postcards- I will have to find some more out- there is no mention in my hiking book. Any ideas or local knowledge out there?

UPDATE: I there is a look-a-like in Beppu but this view is probably of Fuji- or another look-a-like.

UPDATE #2: The title of this print is: The lake of Hakone in Sagami Province, and it's one of The 36 views of Mt Fuji by Hokusai.

A speeding Bullet-

heading for Hiroshima. After staying up the whole night to pack up my flat and studio, I made a dash for the last possible connection to make the first Shinkasen for Hiroshima. The idea was to maximise my chances to see Fuji. It was pretty early and probably half an hour more would have given bluer skies but here is a lot of cloud around today so later might have been worse- I think the guessing and acquiring of the viewing knowledge is what fascinates me about Fuji –viewing.

Not far into the trip- just after the official announcements- one being that you could use wireless on the train- the first views of Fuji appeared after coming out of a tunnel.

I was so excited about the wireless, that I could blog seeing Fuji in the moment, that I almost missed the first viewing point. As it turned out you needed a Japanese account to use the internet- and I was so cross eyed with tiredness that I had to sleep.

The second view is again coming out a tunnel and the mountain profile at this point immediately reminded me of this Hokusai print- Fuji in the spring breeze (?) Not sure will have to look it up and correct this.

I didn't know that Fuji had a hump. One of the mysterious things about Fuji is its hard to orient where you are in relation to it, from it's profile- maybe this is just because I don't know it.

Pretty sure the last point is disappearing into a tunnel too- although I was pretty delirious so who knows.

Update: the Hokusai print is called Red Fuji or Mount Fuji in Clear Weather .

Monday, March 1, 2010

Oi Yacho Koen- third trip

Spent windy cold Sunday at Oi-Yacho Koen, a nice day including meeting new people and seeing lots of ducks, including the Common Teal and Tufted Duck.

Out the way out Masa told me you could see Fuji-san from the walkway bridge over the rail line. When I saw it I clapped my hands and squealed like a ten-year-old girl who has been told that she is going for a pony ride. I still don’t understand the pull it exerts over me. Even this pollution hazed view was exciting.

I have started to think about collecting views of Fuji has a work and see if I can meet any Fuji-san enthusiasts.

Grey Kamakura- missed nori-mono

I started the day at Kenchoji, which is the oldest Zen temple in Kamakura and an impressive wooden temple complex. The trail started up behind the temple climbing steeply straight away via a long sequence of stairs to a temple which had a lookout to view towards Fuji-san. As you can see the day was pretty clouded over and I only got glimpses of the very base at points during the day.

The hike was a good long walk with some steep climbing. It was mostly through deciduous forests, so lots of bare trees. The trail gave fantastic panoramic views of the coast (which photos don’t quiet capture). That coastal view made me think of home and I thought about lots of people as I walked along. At one point I got a view toward Fuji with just the very base visible below clouds. I didn't think to take a photograph because at this stage I didn't realise the turn my work was going to take- collecting the variety of views and moods- also with so many clear January days I had no idea of the grey that was coming...

I have found that the weather forecast changes pretty rapidly here. Rain was forecast for Friday- which was why I had headed out of town on Wednesday and Thursday. It held off till I got to Zuisenji and then started to come down pretty heavily, making me head off before I wanted to really. It poured the whole way back to town and meant I took pretty straight route and didn’t see that many temples.

Of course half way back to Tokyo it cleared and the sky cleared as I passed Yokohama and I got a view of Fuji-san from base to top, much like the blue evening view the day before. Little did I realise on that day, that it would be my last view of Fuji in the afternoon and that it was going to take another 6 weeks before I would get a chance to photograph the mountain from the Yokohama JR line.