Hanegi Park Plum Blossoms 2022 and camera thoughts

Hanegi Park Plum Blossoms 2022 were excellent. They put some life back into Tokyo. It was a sign winter would soon be over. Plus, the weather was great. Flower photography on that day was superb. And by chance, it made me wonder about the future of cameras.

What was my photo gear for this shoot?

  • Camera Body: Fujifilm X-T3
  • Lenses: XF 16-55mm F2.8 R LM WR and the XF 55-200mm f/3.5-4.8 R LM OIS

How was my Hanegi Park Plum Blossoms 2022 experience?

There was one disappointment. Overhead, we had great weather, but clouds covered the horizon. So we couldn’t see Mount Fuji. Did you know that? Yes, you can see it from this local park in Setagaya. One day, I’ll post pictures of it from an earlier festival.

In 2022, there was no festival due to the pandemic. I was happy about that for selfish reasons. With no stalls, the park looked better. That meant fewer people to share the flowers. I liked that!

One thing about Hanegi Park Plum Blossoms 2022 surprised me. Many people had cameras. I’m not talking about smartphones. There were DSLRs and mirrorlesses.

It was good to see. It made me feel that the camera industry still has a future. Were people showing interest in photography again? Or what I saw was an anomaly? It was probably an anomaly.

Most people don’t do long exposures, portraits, or shoot at night. Those genres take effort. The need for a “real camera” is dropping.

Flowers are different. They are beautiful and relatively easy to photograph. People want to get the best possible image quality of them. That’s why they use “real cameras.” They are a step up from smartphone cameras.

Look at the statistics. Camera sales have plummeted in recent years. According to Camera Pop, sales amounted to 120 million units in 2010. Most of those were point-and-shoots. In 2020 the number was 9 million.

You don’t see many compact cameras these days. Most people use mirrorless or DSLRs, with some medium format thrown in. Smartphones are good enough for most people, to be honest.

Let’s get back to the flowers. Hanegi Park’s plum blossoms looked pretty good. I would like to go again to get a photograph of Mount Fuji, but that probably won’t happen. Well, the park doesn’t have the best view of the mountain, but I like to get pictures of it from unexpected places.

The weather might deteriorate again next week, and I’ll probably need to work. I might get lucky and have some free time. If I do, and if the weather is good, the smart thing will be to photograph another place. Already I’m thinking of going to Keio Mogusaen.

Wrapping up

Hanegi Park Plum Blossoms 2022 were exceptional. They injected life into the city and signaled the end of winter. With the fantastic weather, we had an exceptional day of flower photography. And this was enhanced by the smaller crowds thanks to the absence of the annual festival.

And yes, camera sales are falling. However, the presence of photographers with “serious” cameras at Hanegi Park suggested ongoing interest and demand. Enthusiasts focus on the superior quality of dedicated systems. Smartphone cameras suffice for most, though. Please leave comments and questions below.

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2 thoughts on “Hanegi Park Plum Blossoms 2022 and camera thoughts”

  1. The first signs of spring which means we’re probably only days away from hay fever hell! Good to see plenty of folk sticking with interchangeable lens cameras. For close ups, portraits and the like smartphones are fine but for landscape and action pics I’m afraid a 12-megapixel iPhone 13 isn’t going to cut it. Still loyal to the Pentax brand and about to drop a pretty penny on the Pentax K-3 Mark III which by all accounts rivals the Fujifilm X-T4 at least with IQ.

    1. Thanks for dropping by David. If I had the money to spare I’d pick up a K-1 for sure. The K-3 MkIII seems like a great camera, but the price? Anyway, as a former Pentax user, I’m glad they are still going. I actually miss my K-30. That was a nice beginner’s camera.

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