Sacred Gate

Tori-i 鳥居

The monument called “鳥居”(Tori -i)can be seen many places in Japan. They are mostly  gateways as the entrance to a Shinto shrine.The monument signs us “from here you are going to enter the sacred area”.

Its symbolic and photogenic appearance are popular for tourists.

Thousands of Tori-i, Kyoto:Fushimi Inari-taisha(京都 伏見稲荷大社)

Fushimi Inari-taisha, Kyoto, is the most famous and popular destination. They have more than 5,000 tori-i (less than 10,000?) are standing in the line. The tori-i tunnels is simply amazing. Any companies or any individuals donate some amount of money in order to  build their own tori-i with their name on it. So the total number of tori-i in there is keep going up nowadays.

RED GATES by Yoshihiko Wada on


Miyajima, Hiroshima prefecture (厳島,広島)

Miyajima(宮島) is also a popular sight. I visited there  the last summer with my family.
Allow me for showing you some snap shots from there.


Kami-iso no Tori-i(神磯の鳥居), O-arai, Ibaraki(茨城県大洗)

Let me introduce one of the famous “Tori-i” location”Kamiiso-no-Torii”, Oarai, Ibaraki, prefecture.

Since my home town is pretty nearby the location, I visit there in every new year holiday.

the sunrise on New Year’s day

In Japan it is celebrated as the first crack of dawn once a year,so lots of people visit to see the sunrise on New Year’s day. The location is so popular for the beautiful sunrise that many, so, sooou many people come to see the place throughout the night to dawn.If you want to visit there to shoot, you have better to avoid the January 1st, or you just hold your camera without the tripod in the crowded people.
I always visit there the 2nd day, January. Still there were so many photographers, but I can assure that you can find one or two spots for your tripod.



Since I’d visited there many times before I wanted to try different method: Panorama.

You can find How to make panorama picturesanywhere in the Web,  so just let me show you the “before and after”.

Actually panorama method is not good for a closed seascape because sea stacks can be the  hindrance for smooth transition of stitching. However “long exposure” can solve the problem.

Below are 9 raw shots , before stitching panorama:

Tech info:D600, 70-200 f4(70mm),f9, 30seconds for each shot.

After stitching (rough edit):

The long exposure flattened the sea stacks, transition of the border of  each images were greatly done.


The above is the just before the sunrise, and I was keep shooting for another version of panorama:

Tech info:D600, 70-200 f4(70mm),f9, 1/3 seconds for each shot.

result ( finished version)


This time the transition was much harder but I blended the sea stacks manually and carefully for acquiring the  natural look.  Bellow is the right half of the  above, which original file has still around 6000×12000 pixels.


Godsend by Yoshihiko Wada on 500px


I visited the location the next day and tried some long exposures.


302sec,f8,iso100,24mm used by Firecrest 16 filter.



Yomi by Yoshihiko Wada on 500 px

I wish you got curious about the monument and will shoot “your” version of a tori-i images. Bye!


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