Cherry-Blossom “Snow”, and Some So-So Desktop Backgrounds
NOTE: Images with an icon next to them have been artificially shrunk to better fit your screen; click the icon to restore them, in place, to their regular size.
Cherry-Blossom “Snow” from last year -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2008 Jeffrey Eric Francis Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D200 + Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8 @ 190 mm — 1/125 sec, f/7.1, ISO 500 — map & image datanearby photos
Cherry-Blossom “Snow”
from last year

This year's cherry blossom season in Kyoto is turning out quite odd, or, at least it seem so to my limited experience. Last week, matching up how the blossoms were shaping up compared to how they were in the month-long cherry-blossom timelapse I posted last year, it seemed that this year was a couple of days ahead, and indeed, one of the trees outside my window is getting full of blossoms.

But I was out and about quite a bit today, and from what I could tell, most trees were nowhere near as far along. Some trees had no blossoms at all. One reason, perhaps, is that it's been quite cold for the last week, with evening temperatures dipping into the low forties, not getting much higher during some days (like today) than the low fifties.

Anyway, here are some pictures from last April 7th, from a fountain near the park where Anthony likes to ride his bike. That day was overcast, sort of gloomy day, but cherry blossoms can brighten anything up. I posted just a few photos that day (Just Like That, Kyoto's Cherry-Blossom Season Ends), but posted some others from the day later in the fall.

And now a few more today. In the shot below, you can see Anthony riding his bike next to a fountain. You can see all the cherry-blossom petals accumulating everywhere, including the edge of the grass next to him...

Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2008 Jeffrey Eric Francis Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D200 + Nikkor 17-55mm f/2.8 @ 24 mm — 1/80 sec, f/4.5, ISO 200 — map & image datanearby photos

The blossom petals that fell into the water were pushed by the brisk wind to the far end of the fountain....

Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2008 Jeffrey Eric Francis Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D200 + Nikkor 17-55mm f/2.8 @ 23 mm — 1/180 sec, f/4.5, ISO 200 — map & image datanearby photos

The view when you got up close was pretty...

Floating Cherry-Blossom Petals -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2008 Jeffrey Eric Francis Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D200 + Nikkor 17-55mm f/2.8 @ 55 mm — 1/125 sec, f/9, ISO 200 — map & image datanearby photos
Floating Cherry-Blossom Petals

I suspected that a straight-down shot might make for an interesting desktop-background image, so I took a few different types...

desktop background image of bed of cherry-blossom petals floating in a fountain in Kyoto, Japan -- Bed of Blossoms -- Copyright 2008 Jeffrey Eric Francis Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D200 + Nikkor 17-55mm f/2.8 @ 55 mm — 1/160 sec, f/7.1, ISO 200 — map & image datanearby photos
Bed of Blossoms
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Unfortunately, the blossoms turn brown as they start to go bad, and that sort of mars the composition. Or not, depending on your view. Personally, I'd like it much better with just pure, fluffy petals.

Here's a less close-up view..

desktop background image of bed of cherry-blossom petals floating in a fountain in Kyoto, Japan -- Middle-Close View -- Copyright 2008 Jeffrey Eric Francis Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D200 + Nikkor 17-55mm f/2.8 @ 55 mm — 1/180 sec, f/7.1, ISO 200 — map & image datanearby photos
Middle-Close View
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For the one above, I spent a few minutes clicking on the clone tool in Lightroom to hide the most egregious brown spots, but I don't know that it was worth it, because the result is just a different degree of “not pure”.

FWIW, here's a pulled-back view...

desktop background image of bed of cherry-blossom petals floating in a fountain in Kyoto, Japan -- Pulled-Back View -- Copyright 2008 Jeffrey Eric Francis Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D200 + Nikkor 17-55mm f/2.8 @ 34 mm — 1/180 sec, f/7.1, ISO 200 — map & image datanearby photos
Pulled-Back View
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Cherry-Blossom Petal Inspection Service -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2008 Jeffrey Eric Francis Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D200 + Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8 @ 200 mm — 1/250 sec, f/4, ISO 500 — map & image datanearby photos
Cherry-Blossom Petal Inspection Service
Somewhat Mesmerizing for some reason -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2008 Jeffrey Eric Francis Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D200 + Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8 @ 200 mm — 1/1000 sec, f/3.2, ISO 500 — map & image datanearby photos
Somewhat Mesmerizing
for some reason

Here's a view with more water and fewer petals....

desktop background image of bed of cherry-blossom petals floating in a fountain in Kyoto, Japan -- Less Dense -- Copyright 2008 Jeffrey Eric Francis Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D200 + Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8 @ 200 mm — 1/500 sec, f/7.1, ISO 500 — map & image datanearby photos
Less Dense
Desktop-Background Versions
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I don't know that any of these are particularly interesting as desktop backgrounds, but since I took them, I thought I'd share them.

Here's a shot from the same location, looking past the park through to the main gate of the Heian Shrine...

Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2008 Jeffrey Eric Francis Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D200 + Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8 @ 200 mm — 1/320 sec, f/2.8, ISO 500 — map & image datanearby photos

Those trees don't have any blossoms yet this year. Nor does the big tree in the middle of the park, which was at full bloom 51 weeks ago...

Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2008 Jeffrey Eric Francis Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D200 + Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8 @ 200 mm — 1/80 sec, f/5.6, ISO 500 — map & image datanearby photos

So, it seems like things will be a bit later this year, although everyone was saying that it would be early this year. We'll see. As it looks now, Easter weekend is shaping up to be the main event this year.


All 2 comments so far, oldest first...

Nice pictures.
I hope you don’t mind, I stole one to use as my diary background online.

Hmmm, did your really take one from this page? I don’t notice any missing 😉  —Jeffrey

— comment by Kmi on January 13th, 2010 at 2:57am JST (7 years, 11 months ago) comment permalink

Hi… i’m from Brunei. i was browsing pictures of planting rice when i found your blog. wow… you makes the world look so wonderful… i can’t help myself to look more pictures from your blog. i hope it’s ok with you. Very nice pictures and i hope you won’t mind that i took some pictures to show to my pupils. (yes.. i’m a teacher… hehehe…) thanks for sharing those beautiful pictures.

— comment by susie on May 9th, 2010 at 7:48pm JST (7 years, 7 months ago) comment permalink
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