Sunday, 19 June 2016

Spring 2015 Hanami in Hasselt

Hasselt is home to one of the largest real Japanese gardens (built by Japanese gardeners) in Europe and I'm lucky to live an hour or so away from it.
Traditionally every Spring the garden holds a Hanami.

What better place to wear a kimono ?

Lucky for us the weather was splendid : lots of sun, no rainclouds anywhere ( very unusual here in Belgium !).

 
 The Japanese garden has a large waterfall cascading down into the upper lake ,


 from where the water flows through a winding stream , with paths alongside it.

 

 

Several plants and shrubs were already in bloom , thanks to the warm weather. 
 
 
Ofcourse we were here for one blossom only : sakura !
 

And we weren't disappointed : the sakura were in blossom everywhere around us.


First to arrive : Maaike and Ben, as always impeccably dressed.


Maaike's musubi.

Meeting up with their friends from the tea ceremony , that was held in the tea house later on.


Joining us from the Netherlands : Thirsa , Amy and Jody.


Our party settles down in a choice spot underneath the sakura trees.

 
And while we're getting comfortable in the sun,
 
 
below us in the square, the taiko drummers are getting ready for their performance.

 
 

Amy, watching the drummers play.


Thirsa , who's here for the first time, is a professional photographer. She also loves to pose for photographs.
 

 That's a very dignified look. Stern almost :)


Lovely smile, though :)


Amy and Jody , showing off their sleeves.


Amy at the entrance to the teahouse.


Posing by the tea-house : Thirsa, Amy and Jody.
Personally I prefer not to pose people in the sun, because of the shadows on their face, but here I had no choice.

 


 What a lovely surprise : Caroline (in kimono) and her sister.


That's a wonderful plushy ! Oh, it's a pirate ?


Everyone posing at the bridge.


The traditional tabi shot ( well at least three are tabi ! ).


When you visit a hanami in kimono, people are always curious and ask what you're wearing :)


and want to have a picture posing together as a memento. It's lots of fun.

 Before we go back to the lower lake by the tea-house , everyone poses
fearlessly on the narrow bridge by the waterfall.


And while Jody is trying to lure the koi and get some free sashimi,


we're taking pictures in the setting sun by the lake.








Tip of the day :) : use a flash or a reflector for this shot, when the sun is behind your model, otherwise this side will be too dark.
 

Another day over, one last look at the waterfall and we're headed for home.


Till next time, sakura !

 
 
 

2 comments:

Kumiko said...

These are amazing photos,Walter!
All of them look gorgeous in their kimonos!
These are stunning photos.
Thank you for sharing these pics,Walter!

Walter said...

Thank you Kumiko !