Rainbow Bridge, Tokyo

The magic of Tokyo lies in the mix of futuristic modern landscape and the bustle of the small traditional lanes, full of restaurants and tiny shops. One of the symbols of the city, connecting the man-made artificial island of O-daiba and the Shibaura Pier, is the Rainbow Bridge, with its nickname given by the public to one of the largest bridge of Japan.

Panorama of Rainbow Bridge and Tokyo Skyline at Sunset, Tokyo, Japan
June 2015, panorama from 2 horizontal images, additional exposures for highlights, focal length 25mm, aperture f/8, shutter speed 15 seconds, ISO 100, 5-stop ND filter, tripod.

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The popularity of the bridge name is still featured today in the colourful pillars of the suspension metallic construction, which are found on the pedestrian bridge walkway.

A splendid architectural landmark of Tokyo, it is a metallic giant that links both sides of the city, and can be seen from all neighbourhoods. At night, it becomes an iconic character in a science fiction like urban life.

In my first attempt to find the perfect bridge view, I decided to stand on Harumi Pier, where the view is famous, but too far away from the bridge and with many distracting objects between the bridge and myself.

On my second attempt I went to Shinagawa Pier to try view from the other side of the bridge. In order to get there I went on to ride the monorail over the fantastic urban landscape of Tokyo. It felt just as if I was in a manga or a science fiction movie.

Arrived to Tennoz Isle station by monorail I found that Shinagawa Pier was still far away to get there by foot before sunset. Jumping in a cab, with some body language, I explained driver where to go and reached the location I was aiming at just in time for the best evening light!

I used neutral density filter to smooth the bay water and remove distracting details to guide viewer attention to the Rainbow Bridge itself. The graduate change of colours, from the warm sunset hues to the cool twilight shades put a fascinating emphasis on the bridge itself, and the actual Tokyo skyline, facing us through the metal frame.

The photo gives a sense of the reflecting peace in urban Tokyo, with the Bridge, as a sizeable landmark connecting millions of humans each day, by car or by train.

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