28 January 2011

Maiko Katsuyuki, Chion In temple

Maiko Katsuyuki, playing hanetsuki with...
Kyoto 2011


As I promised to some of you I finally posted some pictures of Maiko Katsuyuki. With her upcoming erikae, all the focus and attention will be on her. So the timing is good to post these pictures taken during a photo session at Chion-In temple in Nov 2010.


Katsuyuki, make up
 Kyoto 2011



Katsuyuki, smile
Kyoto 2011

25 January 2011

Maiko Chikayoshi at the Kabuki


Maiko Chikayoshi, after attending Kabuki
Kyoto 2011



While waiting for the bus in front of Minamiza (theater) on Shijo-dori, I saw Maiko Chikayoshi leaving the theater after attending Kabuki. She kindly posed for a portrait.


Maiko Chikayoshi, portrait
Kyoto 2011

Archery contest at Sanjusangendo

Archery contest, snowfall
Sanjusangendo temple, Kyoto 2011


As every year, on Jan 16 an archery contest took place at Sanjusangendo temple (Temple Webpage in Japanese). 2000 contestants came from all over Japan wearing their nicest suits. 20 year-old women could also wear their furisode (kimono) from seijin-shiki on this occasion (see below photos).
Most of the participants were eliminated after shooting only 2 arrows. And that's the beauty of it : what matters about the contest was not the contest itself but just to be there, to gather with friends and to wear these colorful kimono.

It was really cold and the young archer on the top picture was shaking before shooting. So he missed the target. His suit was really photogenic but surely not appropriate for such weather. I didn't like this spot to take pictures at first because of the back light but finally the snow made it quite nice.


Archery contest
Kyoto 2011


Preparation, focus, concentration. Most of them did not hit the target. But it was great to watch them preparing the bow so carefully.



Archery contest, girls
Kyoto 2011



Archery contest, portrait
Kyoto 2011


I asked her if she was not too sad to be eliminated after shooting only 2 arrows ? Obviously she was not.

23 January 2011

Maiko Chizu and Geiko Momiyuki at Ebisu Shrine

 Geiko Momiyuki and Maiko Chizu at Ebisu Shrine
 Kyoto 2011


What a great evening at Ebisu Shrine.

After Satono, Satomi and Tanewaka, I could see Geiko Momiyuki and Maiko Chizu reading Omikuji.
(Omikuji : Fortunes written on strips of paper that are taken randomly from a box at the shrines).

And it seems like good news for Geiko Momiyuki. She obviously picked up the right Omikuji.





Maiko Chizu at Ebisu Shrine
Kyoto 2011


So glad to see Maiko Chizu her again after Kodaiji and Gion Matsuri last year.

Luna chan, carrying kimono

Shikomi Luna chan, Gion
Kyoto 2011


First time to see Shikomi Luna-chan. Her misedashi will take place next month. She was helping her Okaasan to carry Kimono.



22 January 2011

Maiko Satono and Satomi at Ebisu Shrine

Maiko Satono
Kyoto 2011



This series follows the previous one of Tanewaka san at Ebisu shrine. Maiko Satono and Satomi from Miyagawacho distributed Sasa (bamboo leaves) for good fortune in the temple traditional new year celebration.



Maiko Satono smile
 Kyoto 2011


For those who wonder what is Sasa, Maiko Satono is surrounded by these bamboo leaves.



 Maiko Satomi
 Kyoto 2011



Maiko Satomi, smile
Kyoto 2011

Kinkaku-ji Golden Pavillon, winter

#Kinkaku-ji Golden Pavillon, snowfall
Kyoto 2011


Kinkaku-ji the Golden pavillon of Rokuon-ji temple is beautiful at every season. Snow usually makes it even more popular. This is such a "Kyoto cliche", always crowded, but you never get enough.
Kyoto is getting a low of snow this year. I went there for the gate opening before the crowd, NHK etc... It was snowing like on the above picture. Then, 10min later the weather and the colors changed completely as reflected on the below shots.

Golden Pavillon English Webpage





 Golden Pavillon
Kyoto 2011

15 January 2011

Maiko Tanewaka at Ebisu Shrine

Maiko Tanewaka, #Ebisu shrine
Kyoto 2011


Among all the new year festivities, Ebisu is one of my favorite. People go to Ebisu Shrine to pray for prosperity and success in business. It's about money so everyone is a bit more excited than usual and the atmosphere is great. I went there also to see Maiko Satomi and Satono from Miyagawacho who were distributing sasa (bamboo leaves) to shop holders for good fortune.


But but but, who did I see at Ebisu Shrine praying (for good fortune?) with a lovely shibori...Tanewaka san. What a great surprise!

She left right after her vows but gave me some time for another lovely portrait. So, good fortune was at least for me.

Then, I keep Satomi, Satono and other unexpected visitors for the next post.



 Maiko Tanewaka, portrait at Ebisu Shrine
 Kyoto 2011



Maiko Tanewaka, portrait at Ebisu Shrine
 Kyoto 2011

Seijin shiki, portraits

Seijin Shiki, portrait
Kyoto 2011


Jan 11 Seijin no Hi. Like I did last year, I went to Seijin Shiki at Heian Jingu (shrine) to see the enthusiastic 20-year-old girls wearing their colorful furisode (kimono). I am grateful to all the participants for these portraits and their lovely smiles.


 Seijin Shiki, portrait
Kyoto 2011

 
 #Seijin Shiki, portrait in front of Heian Jingu
Kyoto 2011

9 January 2011

Shigyoushiki Kamishichiken

The "Sato girls" , Satohana, Satoryu, Satohina
Kyoto 2011


On Jan 9 it was the turn of the hanamachi (Maiko district) of Kamishichiken to hold their shigyoushiki. Events in Kamishichiken are always less crowded than for the other Hanamachi so the atmosphere is more relaxed. 

The Sato girls on the above pictures. Their misedashi took place in 2010 so this is still first year as Maiko (read about Misedashi).

Thanks to my 3-year-old boy we could get the attention (and smile!) of Umeraku and Umeyae on their way to the ceremony. Last year he also helped me to get this lovely shot. Maybe I should take him with me more often.


 Maiko Umeraku and Umeyae
Kyoto 2011


And I could get Maiko Umesaya to smile, so shy so sweet. I was probably too close.


Maiko Umesaya, portrait
Kyoto 2011

8 January 2011

Shigyoushiki Gion Kobu

Maiko Katsuya, Katsumi and Katsuyuki
Kyoto 2011



Shigyoshiki is literally the ceremony that celebrates the start of a new school year. In Japan this takes place in April for every school. But for Geiko and Maiko, this ceremony takes place in January. They all wear a formal black kimono for this occasion.

These pictures were taken on Jan 7 after the ceremony of Gion-kobu.




 Maiko Mameharu
 Kyoto 2011



Tough to get a good shot through the crowd of photographers. This is Maiko Mameharu before she entered an Ochaya on Hanamikoji. On the below picture, this is Geiko Yasuha who kindly posed also before entering an Ochaya.


Geiko Yasuha, portrait
Kyoto 2011