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Satoyama Consortium

Snapshots celebrating Japan's rural beauty

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The Japan Times Satoyama Consortium held a photo contest to further expand interest and awareness in satoyama — a Japanese term referring to woodlands in rural areas maintained by area residents. The general public and relevant parties, including local governments, submitted photos in hopes of capturing the beauty of satoyama.

Here, we introduce the two Grand Prize winners — one each from the general category and that of the municipalities — in addition to four Excellence Award winners — two each from those categories. The winners were announced at a satoyama practitioners’ event held in the town of Jinsekikogen, Hiroshima Prefecture, on Oct. 20. The event was organized by the consortium, the Chugoku Region Governors Association and Jinsekikogen.

The 879 submissions — 828 in the general category and 51 in the municipality category — were narrowed down in an initial selection stage by judges and the consortium secretariat. Readers cast ballots to choose winners in the final stage.

Grand Prize, general category

Hoshi-toge in Tokamachi, Niigata Prefecture, taken by Hideto Hirayama
Hoshi-toge in Tokamachi, Niigata Prefecture, taken by Hideto Hirayama

Excellence Award, general category

Nantan, Kyoto Prefecture, taken by Kensan
Nantan, Kyoto Prefecture, taken by Kensan

Excellence Award, general category

Itoshima, Fukuoka Prefecture, taken by Masayuki Mafune
Itoshima, Fukuoka Prefecture, taken by Masayuki Mafune

Grand Prize, municipality category

Town of Hayama (Mayor: Takahito Yamanashi): Rice terraces in the Kamiyamaguchi district in Hayama, Kanagawa Prefecture
Town of Hayama (Mayor: Takahito Yamanashi): Rice terraces in the Kamiyamaguchi district in Hayama, Kanagawa Prefecture

Excellence Award, municipality category

City of Yamagata (Mayor: Takahiro Sato): Hilly area in western Yamagata, Yamagata Prefecture
City of Yamagata (Mayor: Takahiro Sato): Hilly area in western Yamagata, Yamagata Prefecture

Excellence Award, municipality category

City of Kumano (Mayor: Kanji Kawakami): Maruyama Senmaida rice terraces in the Kiwa district in Kumano, Mie Prefecture
City of Kumano (Mayor: Kanji Kawakami): Maruyama Senmaida rice terraces in the Kiwa district in Kumano, Mie Prefecture

For more information on the contest, see satoyama-satoumi.net/global/contest/photo2018/result/.