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The Michelangelo of Microsoft Excel

The Microsoft Excel program, which comes pre-installed on most PCs, is typically reserved for financial analysis, or bookkeeping. But for Tatsuo Horiuchi, a 77-year old retired man living in Japan, it’s his acrylic paints; his watercolors; his canvas.

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Edo-Ball: Ukiyo-e Prints Inspired by NBA Culture

“The Gateway” (Season 2)

Ukiyo-e has inspired countless numbers of spinoffs that have riffed on everything from Star Wars and Nintendo characters to animated gifs. But one mashup we did not see coming was Edo Ball, a series of artworks by Australia-based art director Andrew Archer and “inspired by basketball, Japan, NBA and culture.”

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Photographing Factories Against a Mt. Fuji Backdrop

all photos by Hirota Kiriyama courtesy Sankei News

In a previous series on Mt. Fuji we talked about the many niche subcategories of photographing Mt. There’s Mt. Fuji with clouds, Mt. Fuji from afar, Mt. Fuji from the city and Mt. Fuji framed by various objects and sculptures. There’s even a dedicated group of photographers who get their kicks by shooting Mt. Fuji from different train stations. Now there’s one more subcategory: photographs that capture factories against a Mt. Fuji backdrop.

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A Display of 8000 Paper Sculptures Made from Chopstick Sleeves

Yuki Tatsumi was working as a waiter in a restaurant when one day, as he was cleaning up a table, he noticed that a customer had intricately folded up the paper chopstick sleeve and left it behind. Japan doesn’t have a culture of tipping but Tatsumi imagined that this was a discreet , subconscious method of showing appreciation. He began paying attention and sure enough noticed that other customers were doing the same thing. Tatsumi began collecting these “tips” which eventually led to his art project: Japanese Tip.

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Shiba-inu Geoglyph Made Entirely From Natural Materials

photo by jiji press, taken from ferris wheel

With just about 2 weeks before Japan welcomes in 2018, the new year of the dog, Hitachi Seaside Park in Ibaraki Prefecture has unveiled an enormous geoglyph of a Shiba-inu and 2 pups. The large sculpture measures 23 x 27 meters (75 x 89 ft) and is made from natural elements found in the park like kochia plants, tree branches and pine cones.

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Colored Pencils Modeled After Traditional Japanese Flowers

Japan has a rich appreciation for flowers like sakura (cherry blossoms) and kiku (chrysanthemums), which are practically national symbols. Deeply ingrained in the culture as part of the country’s appreciation for the 4 seasons, Japan even has a language of flowers (花言葉) that associates different emotions with plants. Now, a Japanese designer has adopted 5 of the most symbolic flowers and turned them into a set of colored pencils, recreating each color but also the shape of the flower.

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Dense Tokyo as Seen Through the Lens of Tatsuto

all photos by Tatsuto | used with permission

It’s well-documented that Tokyo is amongst the world’s most densely-populated cities. And you don’t have to look to far for visual confirmation of this: simply board a train headed for central Tokyo during rush hour, or walk around Shibuya almost any day of the week. But the discerning photographer Tatsuto captures Tokyo’s density in a different way: through spectacularly chaotic and overstimulating photos of objects that make up this vibrant city.

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The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Mascot Candidates Unveiled

The many decision-making processes for the upcoming Tokyo 2020 Olympics have been a bumpy ride, to say the least. Plagiarism allegations forced the committee to scrap their original logo and seek a new one. Then, when the new Tokyo Stadium proposal by the late Zaha Hadid was unveiled it was met with heavy criticisms over budget and site-specific appropriateness, which eventually forced the committee to start from scratch again. Now, with less than 1000 days to go, things seems to be back on track. Earlier this week 3 candidates were announced as potential mascots.

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Winners of the 2017 Kansai Photojournalism Awards

The 2017 Kansai Photojournalism Awards were announced last week. Exceptional photojournalism and videography from this year was recognized in various categories like News and Sports. The Kansai Photojournalism Association, which is made up of 76 news organizations with offices in the Kansai region, presented the most coveted Association Award to 2 photographers at Sankei News for their coverage of fireworks festivals over the summer.

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Torietsu: Yakitori and Japanese Whisky Come Together in this Tokyo Eatery

I’ve been on a Yakitori kick these days. Sure it’s just chicken, but it’s also so much more! There’s nothing quite like sitting at the counter, watching the chef roast your skewer over hot coals as he fans the flames and smoke rises from the cinders. Omoide Yokocho, which also has the less-appetizing name Piss Alley, can be fun, but it’s swarming with tourists. If you’re looking for something a little more exclusive and intimate, head to Meguro where, nestled away on a side street is Torietsu.

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