Where ever you go, you are bound to see new things. The temptation is to take pictures of landmark attractions or beautiful landscapes, while ignoring shops and store windows. But having pictures of the town adds revives memories of the place, and it helps show others what it was really like.
Matsushima, pine island, is famous for its bay having over two hundred small islands. The town draws many visitors, and where there are visitors there are shops to serve them. I took photos of shops as we walked along the street skirting the shoreline. I’ll save the pictures of the islands for another day. These photos are about pointing the camera at interesting things.
I liked this scene because there is a lot going on: shops, people, cars, modern buildings, faux-European style, and a traditional temple. It’s better in a large print where you can study the details. I squared up the image and cropped out some sky with Photoshop.
One shop was selling cast iron teapots, a local craft beautifully done. The variety of interesting designs defies our era of stamped-out manufactured goods. the highlights in the image were darkened in Photoshop.
This shop selling grilled seafood had a large window opened to the street. The large scallops were about $3 each, pricey but tasty.
This scene has some elements likely to be perplexing to visitors to Japan. The cat figure, a Lucky Cat, is a traditional shop icon for greeting customers. The statues are typically more like a foot tall rather than this giant. Next to the cat is a rack selling fortunes told according to the signs of the zodiac. However, the Japanese twist is to refine the fortune telling based upon your blood type as well. The columns are headed A, AB, B, and O. Japanese pop culture claims that personalities correspond to blood types. I don’t remember my blood type, which is embarrassing when I’m asked.
This shop had plants and stick toys in front. I wonder why the sign says “fair trade” in English.
It’s easier to pick out interesting scenes in an exotic location, but once you adopt the mindset of capturing the differences from home, you can find unique shots wherever you go.