Reflecting on China Airlines’ 747 Passenger Plane Retirement

Last October I did a post about British Airways’ retiring its last passenger 747 plane. This time I am reflecting on the news that this week it was China Airlines’ turn to retire its last passenger 747 planes (it still has some freight ones). That another airline has retired its 747 passenger planes is not…

Anniversary of the Opening of the Shinkansen

1 October marks the anniversary of the opening of the first shinkansen (‘bullet train’) line, the Tokaido Shinkansen. The line opened in 1964, just a few days before the Tokyo ‘summer’ Olympics (which were held in October to avoid the heat of a Japanese summer). Since then the network has expanded across the country, and…

Photographing the Shinkansen: Mishima Station

Having mentioned how you can photograph the shinkansen at Atami in a recent post, this post covers the next station west along the Tokaido Shinkansen, Mishima. There are two key things about Mishima station from a photography point of view. First, is that it is the only shinkansen station with an island platform with the…

Coming Across Nature When Researching

As I mentioned in my most Photographing Planes Near Haneda Airport, Tokyo: Jonanjima, one of the things I associate with going to that site is seeing stray cats, birds and even Mount Fuji. I thought I’d say more (largely show photographs) about this and also some other encounters with nature during my research trips, where…

The BOAC Flight 911 Memorial

In the next of my series of posts about memorialisation sites I have visited (see also The Tōya-maru sinking and The JL350 memorial), I’m writing about my visit to the BOAC Flight 911 Memorial (英国海外航空機空中分解事故). I visited the site on 19 September 2017. A (currently very brief) summary of what happened to the flight itself…

Blurring the boundaries between research and fiction: Aokigahara

For many years I had been aware of the English-language media’s seeming obsession with Aokigahara – often referred to as Japan’s ‘suicide forest’. I’d not seen the same level of interest in the Japanese media. After having spent many years researching the JAL flight JL123 plane crash and particularly the memorialisation of those who died…

Photographing the Shinkansen: Fuji

The view of the shinkansen passing Mount Fuji is probably the most well known and well used image of the shinkansen. This article will explain where to go to get that shot… what it cannot do it help you with the weather. Winter is a better bet than summer – but Mount Fuji tends to…