National | AT A GLANCE

Head-turning camera puts new spin on Tokyo tourist sites

by Yoshiaki Miura

Staff Photographer

Talk about revolutionary. Ricoh’s Theta S camera shoots 360 degrees and turns out head-spinning spherical images when paired with an image-processing app. The camera, which has two lenses, can be hand-held or triggered by remote control.

It turns well-known Tokyo tourist sites into scenes of fantasy, producing images that might come straight from “Alice in Wonderland.”

The busy Shibuya scramble crossing, where up to 3,000 people surge across the intersection every time the light turns green, becomes a small, densely populated planet with buildings sticking out like trees.

The nearby statue of Hachiko, the district’s most famous dog, can be made to watch over the crowds, waiting loyally for its owner to come back, as legend has it the dog did in the 1930s.

An image of Sensoji Temple’s Kaminarimon gate in the Asakusa district makes the giant red lantern pop out.

Taking the same, rabbit-hole-like approach, downtown Shinjuku gets its neon-lit buildings squashed together.

In short, the camera’s images make a walk in the park or a stroll on the streets more intriguing, and you can easily share the fun with friends and family on social media. A pinch and a click on Theta’s app allows users to edit the photos and post them online.

The Kaminarimon gate at Sensoji Temple in Tokyo
The Kaminarimon gate at Sensoji Temple in Tokyo’s Asakusa district gets a new twist in this Sept. 17 image. | YOSHIAKI MIURA
The neon-lit buildings of Tokyo
The neon-lit buildings of Tokyo’s Shinjuku Ward get ringed by pedestrians in this head-spinning Sept. 25 image. | YOSHIAKI MIURA
The bronze statue of the dog Hachiko in front of Shibuya Station in Tokyo pops out from the crowd in this Sept. 25 image.
The bronze statue of the dog Hachiko in front of Shibuya Station in Tokyo pops out from the crowd in this Sept. 25 image. | YOSHIAKI MIURA
Sensoji Temple in the Asakusa district of Tokyo is transformed into a miniature planet in this image taken on Sept. 17.
Sensoji Temple in the Asakusa district of Tokyo is transformed into a miniature planet in this image taken on Sept. 17. | YOSHIAKI MIURA
An image taken inside the Kaminarimon gate at Sensoji Temple in Asakusa, Tokyo, gives it a new perspective on Sept. 17.
An image taken inside the Kaminarimon gate at Sensoji Temple in Asakusa, Tokyo, gives it a new perspective on Sept. 17. | YOSHIAKI MIURA
Japan Times staff photographer Yoshiaki Miura experiments with Ricoh
Japan Times staff photographer Yoshiaki Miura experiments with Ricoh’s Theta S 360 degree camera in Tokyo’s Yoyogi Park on Sept. 25. | YOSHIAKI MIURA

Shibuya Shibuya

Post from RICOH THETA. – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA

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