Monday, April 16, 2007

Summary of this class

This semester, I loved making my own blog. I had never designed a webpage before, or written a blog. It was exciting that my friends checked my blog and commented on my pictures.
For the International project my group initially decided to photograph the subways of Philadelphia and Tokyo, and then talk about the comparisons and contrasts. That turned out to be infeasible, so we decided to go out and photograph the many facets of Tokyo nightlife. My night life is composed of sweet, innocent dreams in my bed or in the bright gym dancing ballet, so my night life is a lot like my day life. But Tokyo is a city of so many different tastes and obsessions. It is at night that the Japanese lose their self-consciousness and forget about their duties to others.Some go to arcades, some to maid or anime cafes, and some just drink and drink and drink and then stumble to the last train for the long ride home.

I will always remember the field trips I took with my classmates and professors! We left our footprints in so many wonderful and fun places in Tokyo! I could not go to the party of our final projects, and I lost the chance to celebrate our achievements from this semester. But the staff who worked at the presentation told me that people appreciated my projects, and I feel so happy about that! My hard work got results!

Thank you to my professors and precious classmates! I will maintain my blog and keep putting up pictures of my experiences in Tokyo, and I hope that all of you will come and visit!

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Statement of my final project

Nail Art in Azabu-juban

There is a nail salon that I love to visit in Azabu-juban, 5 minutes from my apartment. I first found it in November 2005, and ever since then I’ve been going every three weeks. I can not speak Japanese, but I manage to communicate to the nail artists the designs I want for my nails. I do not like just using the samples they provide. It is more fun to choose a different design for each of my ten fingers, and ask them to change some from the original samples. When I am lonely, the nail art on my figures and the artists are my friends.

It usually takes three hours for them to get all ten of my nails done (about 18 minutes per finger)! During the process, I may sleep, or use the time to reflect on recent events in my life. But usually I like to watch the artists doing their work. I appreciate their patience, their ideas, the value of their hand-made art, and the cost of beauty for women.

My project will be take pictures for video during the different steps as they create my nail art. I will chronicle a little of this worldwide fashion which reflects the artists' attitudes and the development of the beauty industry. What inspired me to choose this topic was seeing the artists wearing masks to protect themselves from the fumes of the acrylics and other chemicals they use. Even though it might not seem like it at first glance, they do a difficult and demanding job. As a customer, it is also not easy for me; the stones on my nails always rip my stockings. The long nails make it difficult for me do certain tasks, like putting in my contacts. Life is like this; when you choose one thing you have to give up others. I choose the self-satisfaction that my nails give me, and have to give up some convenience.

study question about Donald Richie

After read Donald Richie’s Japan: A Description, I know more about Japanese society and how gaijin think about this country.

I am taking Professor Richie’s Asian Studies class. I like Akira Kurosawa’s movies, and very much enjoyed hearing his analysis of the Seven Samurai and other Japanese period films.

Professor Richie also told us fascinating things about Japanese architecture, which maximizes open, aesthetically beautiful space with pillars, beams, cut wood, and tatami. He calls these design concepts “metaphysical.” I plan to read Meditations on First Philosophy. I remember Yan Fu, a Chinese pioneer in western learning, who made a great contribution to Modern Chinese legal scholarship and philosophy. It was he who first translated the western word “metaphysical” into the Chinese characters “形而上学”
Having lived in Japan for over a year, I have thought a lot about Professor Richie’s theories about the balance (often the conflict) between society and the individual in Japan.

My apartment is on the 5th floor of a building in Azabu-juban. On the other side of the building is Johnny’s, the most prominent talent agency for Japan’s male stars. I always see female fans waiting for the stars on the street. During my 10 minute walk to school, I can experience some of the Japanese people’s attitudes and spirit.

But even though there are some differences in Japan, I am not a person who minds living in different places. If I love a place, it is because my lover is there.

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

February 27th class field trip to Tsukiji Fish Market

We went there at 6 am in the morning, it was so cold.
Look,the fish is as big as a pig.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Sunday, January 21, 2007

My Neighborhood Photos.

Here is the L.D.S. church near the Chinese embassy.

This is one of the most famous maternity hospitals in Japan. The royal family uses this hospital.

Look here is the golden angel on top of the church!

This is where all the Chinese ambassadors are living.

This is a tennis club in Nishi-Azabu.

This is a shrine for praying to go to Harvard. I put 10 yen.

One of the most famous buildings in Roppongi.

I forgot where is it.

This is a kindergarten.