This time we spent most of our holiday in Kyoto. We first visited Kyoto for a couple of days back on our first trip in 2001. This time I wanted to fully explore Kyoto's reputation as the creative centre of Japan.
I wasn't disappointed. Prior to the trip, I had organised several guides to act as interpreters to help us to connect with the Japanese culture and arts.
With the assistance of our guide Takano-san, we participated in a number of art 'experiences' - paper lantern making, woodblock printing, shibori dyeing and basket making.
Mitsuhara took us to a popular temple area with beautiful autumn leaves.
Chizuko took us through the Nishiki markets and gave us a cooking lesson in her apartment.
Such personal 'hands-on' experiences with English-speaking guides enriched our holiday, although we still had plenty of time to indulge in our favourite activites in Japan - hot onsens, eating Japanese food, and filling my suitcase (and Craig's) with washi paper!
|Autumn Leaf reflections|
|Fallen autumn leaves carpet the temple gardens|
|Saiundo Fujimoto's shop caters for traditional|
Japanese brush painting
|Basket making with Takano-san (our guide), and |
|The finshed basket made from bamboo|
|Shibori dyeing - the director of the Shibori museum|
likes to personally help you reveal your dyed scarf!
|Paper Lantern making|
|Finished lanterns at the Akari Design Workshop|
|Trying traditional woodblock printing |
with artist Ichimura - awesome!
|Ichimura is printing labels for sushi products.|
Amazing that its done by hand, several blocks & colours
rather than printed by machine.
|Getting refreshments at a vending machine|
during one of our cycling adventures around Kyoto
|Not too sure about these sandwiches - strawberry and banana!|
|My new favourite store - Bumpodo Art Supplies in Tokyo|
|Woodblock carving tools, only part of the range available|
|Etching Inks, Bumpodo's own brand. Great value and|
quality. I bought some of these last year in Osaka and
am very happy with them, so I stocked up this time,
20% off as well!
|2nd hand bookstore. |
I bought some vintage books with
beautiful papers and text.