Regardless of where you or what you are doing, I believe your actions are dictated by the influences around you. Within my 365 challenge I always maintained a rule that I wasn’t going to take close ups of food and sakura 桜 (cherry blossom). I always saw Japanese people standing so close to a flower or some sakura and thought ‘what are they trying to achieve?’. But this sakura is not the cherry blossom you get in England (although it really is, just English people don’t appreciate it), it is absorbing and it transfixes you in a mesmerising stupor until you can’t help but take hundreds and thousands of photos of it.
I tentatively approached the angle of this scene and cautiously fired off a few ambitious shots. They weren’t too bad. I lowered my haunches to create the desired effect and took more. After a review of my work satisfaction spread across me. I don’t think I was aware of the quality of the picture, having not decided whether it was good or bad, I just wanted to be part of the group that takes close ups of flowers. Isolated no more I had a picture that had eluded me for 3 years previously and it felt so so good.
I don’t remember the next few weeks, it was just one blur of pink and white little flowers. I existed purely to look at pretty blossoming trees and to find something that would compliment it well in the background or foreground. I would get on my bike and ride to the furtherest reaches of Kyoto to find more of what I craved. I was so obsessed with these flowers, I threw my photography morals away and indulged myself in the notion of hanami 花見 (basically looking at flowers). Although having said that, I never really stuck to my rules of photography having captured close ups of food on many number of occasions beforehand.