When one is trying to photograph maiko and geiko on Kyoto streets, one is certainly not alone. Cars cruise by while dangerously-speeding taxi drivers blare their horns at straying pedestrians. Delivery boys on bikes whizz and a constant stream of cheek-by-jowl pedestrians wander willy-nilly. Huge whale-like tourist buses haul themselves down narrow Hanamikoji-dori. (Why, oh why, are buses allowed on such a narrow pedestrian-filled street?) On every trip I get many photos which are severely compromised by other people’s body parts or rushing traffic. I usually delete them but I thought you might like to see some from this trip. It can be quite entertaining to see what turned up in one’s photos, often not realised until one is examining them back home. (Click on each photo to enlarge.)
A very common situation – another person walks into my picture frame. (By the way, the girl at the back is a shikomi; if she makes it through her shikomi year, she will become a maiko.)
“Dear Shikomi, one day in the future you may wear clothes like those whose bags you are carrying, but for the moment, you spoiled my obi shot”.
Sometimes it is the people behind your subjects that spoil the shot. No offence to them personally, mind you.
Another person walks into my picture frame. Because I always stand and photograph quite far away from my subject, this often happens. I never want to loom in a person’s face.
In this case I was the unwelcome addition to a photo. The person you see taking a photograph of this wedding couple kindly asked me to move. (I quickly did so.)
Fast action on the part of the photographer who jumped in front of me.
The ubiquitous elbow photobomb as its owner takes a photo of Kimihiro.
“Look at me!” I was in the view of all these guys (sorry guys!) just as they are in my view.
Another ‘drats’ moment.
There is one of those tourist buses. In my opinion, such a huge vehicle should not be allowed on this tiny street. Plus, a small example of the billion school children who I saw over my three days on Hanamikoji-dori.
Nothing wrong in the foreground. But the guy in the black face mask behind the maiko is the spoiler. And the car doesn’t do any favours either.
I would just like to point out how NOT to photograph maiko and geiko. Here is poor Sayaka having her personal space totally invaded by a woman. Meanwhile the woman’s partner waits right at the entrance to Ichiriki, where Sayaka will enter, to accost her again. This is utterly insensitive and predatory behaviour by tourists.
As opposed to the previous photo, these tourists, also at the entrance of Ichiriki, look on with admiration and respect; completely non-threatening.
And finally, if you have read and looked this far, I am happy to say that not every photo I take photobombs out! Here is Fukutama.