Shibuya Halloween Eve 2022 was kind of fun

Shibuya Halloween Eve 2022. I doubt that is the official name for it. Well, it was the night before the main event, so that is what I call it. What can I say about it? Well, it didn’t measure up to previous years. But, it wasn’t bad either. I headed home with some decent photos. Yeah, it was a good night.

I have to be clear here. It wasn’t a bad event. We need to be clear about that. Like in previous years, people were smiling and friendly. But something was missing. Actually, there was something that no one wanted.

It was the masks to prevent the spread of Covid. They killed Halloween 2022 for me. Some costumes looked strange with them. Seeing one of them on an undead bride or a vampire was a little weird. They put a damper on the event. 

Yes, I know, my photos hardly have a mask in them. That is true. I walked the length of Centa-Gai a few times to find these people. It took a long time. Was I in the wrong places at the wrong times? We’ll have to check photos from other photographers.

And there seemed to be fewer people in costume this year. I don’t know the reason for that, but I can only assume the pandemic had some influence here. Let’s see what happens for the main event.

There was one positive thing I noticed about Shibuya Halloween Eve 2022. It was the police crowd control. At some previous events, they had hard barriers on the crossing. 

Those barriers were gone. This time, a squad of officers darted out into the middle with tape to block off the middle of Shibuya Crossing. It seemed slightly inefficient but very safe. The Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department had obviously done some homework. Kudos to them.

Did anything change at Shibuya Halloween 2022?

Well, it had been a couple of years since I had been to this event. 2019 was the last time I went. But, not much had changed. Obviously, masks were out in force, generally speaking. Other than that, it was the same. As always, there were so many people.

I don’t know if this major but one “famous” spot was inaccessible. There is a walkway that connects JR Shibuya and the Keio-Inokashira stations. From its windows, you can observe the crossing. Photographers often use it. But not this year. It was covered with blue sheets.

As a photographer, I don’t understand the logic. In recent years, Tokyo has been promoting itself as a tourist destination. Why would it do something that reduces the travel experience? The windows should have been open for photos. It’s free publicity for the city.

And one problem was me. Yes, I was a problem. I found it difficult to get into the groove. It had been three years since I last attended a Shibuya Halloween event. In the beginning, I was very hesitant to approach people for photos. It took me some time to get over that. But once, I gained a little confidence, it was easy.

Photography at Shibuya Halloween Eve 2022

  • Camera:  Fujifilm X-T3
  • Lens:  Fujifilm XF 16-55mm F2.8 R LM WR
  • Flash:  Godox V860II

Wrapping up

I got some decent photos so Shibuya Halloween Eve 2022 was kind of fun. So I should be happy. But I hoped for more. Let’s hope next year sees the end of the pandemic and a return to a mask-free Halloween. That would be a lot more fun.

For more Halloween articles, look at:

External website for Tokyo Halloween 2022

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