In traditional kimono - Arachiyama - © Claire Blumenfeld

In traditional kimono - Arachiyama - © Claire Blumenfeld

In traditional kimono - Yasaka-jinja shrine - Kyoto - © Claire Blumenfeld

In traditional kimono - Kiyomizu-dera temple - Kyoto - © Claire Blumenfeld

I walk in Kyoto, my eyes dazzled by explosions of colors and varied patterns wandering in front of me. The Kimonos are out. Obi (belt) attached in pretty knots, Zôri and Tabi(traditional sandals and white socks up to the ankles) and elegant chignons. Cell phones and small handbags. Mix of tradition and modernity.

Ancestral practice from China, the port of Kimonos is very codified and today only worn on special occasions. Women wear very colorful clothes while men are more formal.

In traditional kimono - Kyoto - © Claire Blumenfeld

En kimono traditionnel - Kyoto – © Claire Blumenfeld

In traditional kimono - Kiyomizu-dera temple - Kyoto - © Claire Blumenfeld

In traditional kimono - Kyoto - © Claire Blumenfeld

In traditional kimono - Kyoto - © Claire Blumenfeld

In traditional kimono - Kiyomizu-dera temple - Kyoto - © Claire Blumenfeld

In traditional kimono - Arachiyama - © Claire Blumenfeld

En kimono traditionnel - Temple Kiyomizu-dera - Kyoto – © Claire Blumenfeld

In the middle of all of these gorgeous costumes, some are even more impressive. Geiko (confirmed geishas) and Maiko (apprentices) attract everybody’s eyes. The majesty of their kimono and makeup associated with their status, fascinate. In a temple, two girls dressed in a beautiful red kimono draw my eye. They wear a brocarded uchiki (kind of long coat) with a tsubo ori (wide straw hat around which hangs a long transparent veil allowing to remain anonymous).

Uchiki (embossed coat) and Tsubo ori (veil) - Kodai-ji Temple - Kyoto - © Claire Blumenfeld

Uchiki (embossed coat) and Tsubo ori (veil) - Kodai-ji Temple - Kyoto - © Claire Blumenfeld

Uchiki (embossed coat) and Tsubo ori (veil) - Kodai-ji Temple - Kyoto - © Claire Blumenfeld

Maiko (apprentice Geisha) - Kyoto - © Claire Blumenfeld

Maiko (apprentice Geisha) - Kyoto - © Claire Blumenfeld

Maikos (apprenties Geishas) - Kyoto – © Claire Blumenfeld

Maikos (apprenties Geishas) - Kyoto – © Claire Blumenfeld

Geisha - Kyoto – © Claire Blumenfeld

On this morning of April, a torrential rain falls on Kyoto. This is my third day visiting the « City of Traditions ». During these days, I saw more temples and kimonos than in the space of five months. It is dazzling. And the rain does not prevent the wearing of the kimono. To the ensemble is added a new accessory: the umbrella. Traditional, transparent or colorful for even more style.

Walking in Kyoto is walking in the past and in aesthetics. Each kimono is a work of art, a vestige of Japanese traditions. Although deeply rooted in culture, the wearing of the kimono is disappearing. Fewer and fewer Japanese have real kimonos and its use is increasingly limited.

In traditional kimono - Gion area - Kyoto - © Claire Blumenfeld

In traditional kimono - Gion area - Kyoto - © Claire Blumenfeld

In traditional kimono - Gion area - Kyoto - © Claire Blumenfeld

In traditional kimono - Gion area - Kyoto - © Claire Blumenfeld

In traditional kimono - Gion area - Kyoto - © Claire Blumenfeld

In traditional kimono - Gion area - Kyoto - © Claire Blumenfeld

The Old Man of Storr - Skye - Scotland - © Claire Blumenfeld

Photos – Isle of Skye

The Isle of Skye, located in northwestern Scotland, is the largest island in the Inner Hebrides archipelago. The end of my trip to Scotland being close, I could only enjoy four days on the island to discover its rugged coastline and its mountain scenery.

West coast of South Uist - Hiking the Hebridean Way - Scotland - © Claire Blumenfeld

Photos – The Outer Hebrides

The Outer Hebrides are an archipelago of islands east of Scotland. For two and a half weeks, I crossed on foot following the Hebridean Way, the different islands constituting the archipelago, from Barra in the south to Lewis in the North.

Beinn Dorain - Hiking the West Highland Way - Scotland - © Claire Blumenfeld

Photos – The Scottish Highlands

Eight days of hiking on the West Highland Way in Scotland. Many variations of green and gray with touches of colors. A selection of my best photos on my 156km across the Scottish Highlands.

Chamonix - France - © Claire Blumenfeld

Photos – Winter rebirth around the Mont-Blanc

A selection of my best pictures taken towards the end of winter in Chamonix. The season was difficult for me and I did not manage to enjoy my stay as much as I would have liked. But after several months of reflection I found again a bit of creativity.

Portfolio - Chamonix - France - © Claire Blumenfeld

Photos – An Autumn in Chamonix

After three years abroad, I missed the mountain landscapes of the French Alps. This is one of the things that I felt I was missing the most. When I decided in early August 2018, to return to France for a few months before continuing my trip, coming to Chamonix Mont-Blanc was an obvious decision.

Mount Buller - Victoria - Australia - © Claire Blumenfeld

Photos – In the clouds at Mt Buller

Mount Buller is a small mountain of 1,805 meters. For Australia, it’s high mountain. It is also part of the great chain of mountains spreading from Melbourne to Canberra and considered as the Australian Alps.