Autumn in Japan: Your Own Personal Budda

Jen Waltmon

Sydney, Australia

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Artist's Description

Part of my “Autumn in Japan” series.

I’ve wanted to visit Asia since I was a teenager, and in October of 2010, my wish finally came true. I spent about 10 days in Japan.

My fascination with Asian culture and traditions finally became a reality to me, and the photographer in me went into overdrive. In 10 days, I captured 2,500+ pictures. I hope you enjoy my first (but hopefully not my last) perspective of this beautiful & amazing country.

I found this tiny “Inari” tucked in amongst a crowded residential back street in Nihonbashi-Kakigaracho, Chuo-ku, Tokyo. Here’s a bit about Inari’s: Inari is a popular deity with shrines and temples located throughout most of Japan. According to a 1985 survey by the National Association of Shinto Shrines, 32,000 shrines — more than one-third of Shinto shrines in Japan — are dedicated to Inari. This number includes only Shinto shrines with full-time resident priests; if small roadside or field shrines, shrines kept in a home or corporate office, smaller shrines without full-time resident priests, and Buddhist temples were included, the number would increase by at least an order of magnitude. The entrance to an Inari shrine is usually marked by one or more vermilion torii (orangish-red traditional Japanese gate) and some statues of kitsune, which are often adorned with red yodarekake (votive bibs) by worshippers out of respect. This red color has come to be identified with Inari, because of the prevalence of its use among Inari shrines and their torii. Offerings of rice, sake, and other food are given at the shrine to appease and please these kitsune messengers, who are then expected to plead with Inari on the worshipper’s behalf. Captured with a Nikon D90 in October 2010.

Post-processing done in PSE 8. Grunge frame added from Altered Bits.

© jdub photography 2010

Artwork Comments

  • Ellanita
  • Jen Waltmon
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