Born in Akita Prefecture in 1956. Played basketball for UNITIKA after graduating from high school.
Started photography under the study of Katsusuke Chiba in 1983. She went independent in 1999 and published her work through various magazine and calendar. Her main subjects are the seasons and flowers in the Northern Tohoku region of Japan. She also focuses on the lives of the people in the region as well. In 2008 to 2013, she exhibited her work at “Pukapukan” gallery. From 2010 to 2011, she exhibited her work in Sendai, Tokyo, Sapporo, Akita, and Nagano.
She has published a book “Kosai”
My mother’s family house, located in the foot of the Ou Mountains, had a “minja” (kitchen) that drew water from a stream running from the mountains, providing all the water for daily use. The image of abundant water overlaps with my memory of my family. However, this image has slightly changed when I started photography. There were times when I was carried away with my camera through a mountain stream, or been hit by an intensive rainstorm with drops the size of a marble– I was terrified that I would get pierced by the rain. Throughout my numerous experiences, I learned that water is a “double-edged sword”. From then on, “water” has been my theme and foundation.
I have been a fan of the X series since its release, falling in love with the rendering of memory colors from the film era and the lightweight, compact, and mobile nature of the camera. Among them, X-H1 is my perfect partner when I feel like pressing the shutter by instinct. It will always be at by my side when I drive. This time, I brought the X-H2, which is reborn with 40 megapixels and a 7-step image stabilization system, with me instead. The snow and rain of the mountains runs down the streams, moistens the forests, travels around the land, and eventually reaches the sea, forming clouds that return to the mountains. I hope to experience the endless story of “the reincarnation of water” with the X-H2. I decided to shoot in Mt. Chokai on the Dewa Fuji Mountain range. Off we go!
To begin with, I captured a time-lapse image of clouds rising from the Naso Vally of Mt. Chokai, as if the water is being created. The equalizing function of the interval shooting was sufficient to handle the rapidly changing exposures. It successfully captured the scene as I wanted to. Clouds flow down the river and into the sea.
Sensing the whereabouts of the abundant water, the next stop was the “Agariko-no-mori” (deformed beech), after rain.
With a sensation of the whereabouts of the abundant water, the next stop was an after-rain “Agariko-no-mori” (deformed beech)
Our goal is to find the “Stemflow”, which is water running down the trunk of a beech tree. I immediately targeted the trunk stream that I had found and started to compose my shot. To do so, I had to look through the viewfinder from various angles, but I never felt stressed because the X-H2’s viewfinder has been improved compared to previous models. I was totally surprised at the lack of stress.
As I walked along, I spotted a beech tree with shimmering streaks of water on the upper part of its trunk. I wondered why there were so many, but I continued to shoot anyway. I did not realize what it was until I pressed the playback button to check the focus. It was not only the stemflow that was creating the shimmer, but also the slugs’ food marks. Thanks to the high-resolution reproduction, I was able to find out another new fact about nature. We left the forest with a sense of gratitude.
The journey of water also takes you to ponds and waterfalls.
A glow of light in the drifting mist greeted us at Mototaki Fushiryusui, a spring waterfall.
As I peered through the viewfinder in the fog, I felt a strange sense of realism. It was as if I could grasp the particles of water with my hands. I couldn’t help but think “This is something totally different from the X-H1!”
Water passes through a stream,
moistens plants, nurtures creatures,
and eventually, flows to the sea.
At the Kamaiso coast, rain and melted snow from Mt. Chokai springs from the beach after a 20-year water journey- it mixes with ironsand and creates patterns on the beach. The pattern illuminated by the setting sun is adjusted with white balance to create my own image. I chose Velvia as the film simulation.
I found myself aiming for a composition that was led by a single stream of river flowing into the sunset-tinted Sea of Japan.
I was forever watching the Sea of Japan at sunset with X-H2, my partner for this trip, while thinking about how the water would become clouds and snow, and eventually fall on Mt. Chokai once again.