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Japan’s Imperial Palace



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Silhouette of Serenity
Photograph by Sam Abell

Pausing before he faces the target, Tsugihiro Osaki gathers his strength for archery practice. Mr. Osaki, who trains Imperial Guards in kyudo, the ancient form of Japanese archery, says the practice is a form of mental discipline. “When you step into the kyudo hall, you leave your old self outside,” he says. “In daily life you get thrown off guard all the time, so much is going on. Here it is different. You are concentrating on one thing.” Another archery teacher, Kunio Matsui, puts it this way: “In a monastery they teach you Zen sitting down. Here we teach it standing up.”




Camera: Canon EOS
Film Type: Fujichrome Provia
Lens: 28mm
Speed and F-Stop: 1/60 @ f/5.6
Weather Conditions: N/A
Time of Day: Mid-afternoon
Lighting Techniques: Available light from outside; exposed on the exterior in order to render it and to silhouette the archer.





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