Japanese Style



I took this photograph in Gion, the historic part of the city centre in Kyoto. Not posed at all, they were just walking down the street, totally absorbed in each other. Over the past decade it has become quite common to see young people wearing traditional dress, either on a date or on public holidays. Kimonos are even available in denim and modern patterns, but I loved the way the traditional bold floral design of the woman’s kimono contrasts perfectly with the plain and dark colours of the male outfit. No fashion designer could come up with a more perfect combination of colours and patterns! I was fortunate with the background to the pair, the lovely muted tones and materials of a traditional wooden house. The bamboo ‘skirts’ against the walls are a common feature of old buildings, particularly in the Kyoto region. Called “Inu-yarai”(犬矢来) they protect the walls during the rainy season (and supposedly against dog pee – inu meaning ‘dog’).


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