Spirit of Onna-bugeisha 女武芸者
A series of dynamic feminine portraits inspired by my recent visit to Japan, for the World Photographic Cup in Yokohama.
For this series I wanted to produce a set of dynamic images, which also embody a sense of strength, honour and femininity within a contemporary fashion context. We wanted our fashion model to be inspired by the spirit of Onna-Bugeisha, the strong female warrior of feudal Japan, who history tells us, battled alongside the Samurai men.
Strong in character, these influential women were trained in the use of weapons to protect their household, family, and honour in times of war. Significant icons such as Tomoe Gozen 巴 御前, Nakano Takeko 中野 竹子 and Hōjō Masako 北条 政子are famous examples of Onna-bugeisha.
Model: Amy of Colours Model Management.
Photography & Postproduction: Lee Høwell
Japanese writing from Collection of Ten Thousand Leaves, collated version in Genryaku years (Genryaku kōbon Man'yōshū) Edition with the largest number of poems. 11th century, Heian period, later collated and annoted at June 9, 1184 - image by Reiji Yamashina - https://commons.m.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Genryaku_Manyosyu.JPG