Hey guys! So at the recommendation of @Pepe I’m going to do a little post on my trip to Kasumi, the town in which Air was set. This is also part one of my “What does AIR mean to me?” post, the second part of which will go in the general discussion thread, but I thought this would just be too big to fit in a reply post and might be interesting for anyone wanting to travel their themselves. Also, I categorised this as Key discussion but I’m not entirely sure so I can change that if it doesn’t fit.
Before I get into it, I must give credit to this person: https://punynari.wordpress.com/2010/08/21/the-1000th-summer-an-air-anime-pilgrimage/ I used a lot of the reference images from the Air anime in their article (as I refuse to even touch the show outside of the times I’m desperate to view it) and discovered a lot of locations using it as a guide.
Also, for best results, listen to this while reading:
~ Okay, so let’s begin ~
Kasumi is a little seaside fishing village in northern Hyogo Prefecture and I’d always wanted to go there as soon as I discovered the town in Air was based on a real place, and it should be noted that Kasumi does have many differences to the town in Air. However, I think it’s more romantic to think I went to the town in which Air was set so I’m sticking with that (^_^).
Anyway on to the photos, I don’t think it ever hurts to start off with some sunsets now does it?
(excuse the light leaks, my poor Rollei film back is a little broken after I tried fiddling with it T_T)
Obviously it’s not perfect (I didn’t use reference images when I was shooting) but it really does give you an idea of how similar the towns are.
The classic Japanese fishing boats were also a treat, I get nostalgic just looking at them. Here’s a shot where I tried to recall the reference image and shoot accordingly. I love this shot in the anime by the way, for whatever reason it’s just one of those atmospheric shots that just make me melt:
And now onto my favourite scene ever, of course, it’s the seawall. Unfortunately this was the most disappointing aspect of Kasumi but I suppose it’s different designing for practicality as opposed to romance. To make it worse though, there was a huge construction going on in front of the seawall that really ruined it for me. I’m definitely going to have to go back at some stage when it’s finished though! Either way, here are some comparison shots:
As you can see, in terms of layout with the school it’s still very similar, though the school is further away and the water closer in Air than it is in Kasumi.
The train tracks were also very similar, though trains were most definitely running when I was there:
On the second last day I was there I also made the effort to photograph the shrine (there were about three, but this one reminded me most of the one in Air). It just so happened to be raining quite a bit, luckily my DSLR was weather-sealed enough that I wasn’t too worried, and it really did give the shrine a mystical quality.
It was certainly a lot less open than the one in Air, but there was still quite a climb to get there.
A short walk from the shrine I came to the observatory mentioned in the article I linked at the start. I was unsure as to whether it was operating or not, but no one was around when I got there so I sat down in the small park surrounding it. It had a great view of Kasumi and a few days later all the cherry trees burst into flower!
Finally, there was the area Misuzu and Yukito searched for his missing puppet. I probably would have missed this if not for that article again, but it’s very similar, in my picture you can see the guard railings in the reference shot as well as the building in the background.
And that about wraps up the Air portion of my trip! I stayed for 10 days in Kasumi at a traditional Japanese in called Shio, if anyone ever plans to stay in Kasumi I can highly recommend it, it was very affordable and the Inn keeper makes really good food! I must say, this was also the greatest chunk of digital photos I shot throughout my trip as this was more me documenting areas rather than just shooting what I thought was pretty, either way I had fun!
Finally I’ll link a Kaza-exclusive flickr album where you can see Kasumi in a bit more detail if you’re interested (still adding to it!): https://www.flickr.com/gp/102096868@N03/g2X1X7
I also made a little video (which is probably a lot more romantic than most of my photos -__-):
~Thanks for reading everyone! ~