Asaki Kuryu, Modern Dancer

Professional dancer Asaki Kuryu and I are in talks with a local Tokyo band to potentially collaborate on a music video, showing off one of their tunes set to her very elegant, freeform modern choreography.

She and I got together a few weeks ago and headed out to Futako-Tamagawa, where there is a large river giving us a safe and spacious place to do some early test footage. It’s not the prettiest location, but Asaki saved the footage with her beautiful, emotive movements, and I’m looking forward to working with her again soon.

Check out the test footage below, or to see more of Asaki check out her Instagram or Youtube pages.


Island Lumina, Nagasaki

Earlier this year I had the pleasure of working with a very international team who were bringing the latest version of their global art installation to the small island of Iojima in Kyushu, Japan.

The series of installations, called Lumina, can be found in England, France, America and Canada.

The team has done an incredible job incorporating high tech equipment and modern animation into this rural coastal hillside. You can see the story of a young girl’s adventure playing out amongst the rocks and trees as you follow her from one mysterious location to the next.

The lighting and sound design is engrossing, and tied in to the bridges, stepping stones and winding paths in a very physical and interactive way.

Check out the video produced by Moment Factory below, which features a little of the aerial footage which Soragraph provided.


Kuno Pottery for Zeiss

Tokyo based photographer Irwin Wong has spent a lot of time chronicling traditional Japanese artisans. He has produced several videos for German lensmaker Zeiss documenting these subjects.

We got to tag along to one of his shoots recently, and provide some establishing shots in the beautiful old town of Kasama in Ibaraki, where he tells the story of a dynasty of potters.

The skill and dedication of this craftswoman is incredibly apparent in this beautifully shot video, so please check it out below!

Congratulations Lewis and Aika! 

Earlier this summer, I attended an old friend's wedding out in Chiba.

It was held at a lush forest campsite, on a lovely sunny day. Although I was a guest of the wedding and not working, I brought along one of our drones and did a few short flights in the afternoon and at dusk.

You can see all the guests enjoying themselves as the shadows lengthen and the fairy lights come on.

Congratulations Lewis and Aika on a beautiful wedding!


Aogashima - Life Among the Twin Calderas

The following photos and video were exhibited earlier this year in Sydney as part of the Head On Photo Festival at Artsite Galleries, and will be on display in Tokyo next week at Place M Galleries, Shinjuku.

If I'm not flying drones, I'm probably travelling around Japan taking fine art stills. I recently completed my latest project on Aogashima, a beautiful remote volcanic island where about 150 incredible and resilient people live.

If you're in Tokyo between August 6th and 12th, please come stop by and take a look!

Although the images are all black and white film stills from the ground, Soragraph also helped produce a documentary video about the island and its residents which features some stunning aerial footage.

You can currently only see this documentary in the gallery alongside the exhibition. Check out a trailer for it below!



Sometimes we conduct test or maintenance flights in the eastern suburbs of Tokyo. The safest place to do this is usually above a body of water, so we recently headed for Kyuunakagawa. 

The suburbs can be just as amazing from the air as the skyscrapers of central Tokyo, for both their building variety and their sheer scope as they stretch off into the distance. 

Kyuunakagawa is a small river running parallel to Edogawa, stretching from Minamisuna up to Hirai, and is always a hub of activity full of runners, dog walkers and kayakers. You can see Tokyo's tallest building, Sky Tree, past its northern terminus, and a multitude of both pedestrian and train bridges crossing it at scenic intervals.

On this particular day there was a large rain storm hanging over Chiba, which made for an impressive skyline in the east.


Mitsubishi Fuso Truck Plant

Recently we helped out Daimler with some aerials for one of their promotional videos.

We flew over the Mitsubishi Fuso truck plant, in a nice quiet part of Tokyo, with beautiful views towards the centre of town.

It was not safe to fly on the factory floor, but we were able to make ourselves useful by handholding the drone for some stabilised gimbal pans and tracks of the assembly line. 

Check out Daimler's video below!


Nagahama Castle, Mishimaike, Mukainokura

As I mentioned last week, I recently spent a few days in Shiga Prefecture.

When I first arrived in Japan about 10 years ago, I lived in the beautiful town on Nagahama, so I have very fond, nostalgic memories of this place.

It was an absolute pleasure to fly the drone near Nagahama castle, taking in the cherry blossoms around the Hokoen park, right on the edge of Lake Biwa. I used to live right by this area, so it was wonderful to see such familiar sights from a completely new perspective.

After a beautiful sunrise, I made my way for the nearby Mishimaike, a famous garden and pond with traditional old bridges and stone lanterns, with Mt Ibuki as its backdrop. I had to fly cautiously as a passing school group scared a large group of ducks into flight.

Finally, for something a bit different, I made my way to the abandoned town of Mukainokura, nestled in the hills near the city of Hikone. My friend Florian first told me about this place, and I first visited it years ago for a photoshoot (see images below).

It was nice to return to the village and the adjacent shrine, it’s very peaceful there among the ruins. Not much had changed in the 3 or 4 years since I was last there, as the buildings are slowly swallowed back up into the earth.

Check out the video below to see some of these flights near Nagahama Castle, Mishimaike and Mukainokura.


Torahime, Shiga-ken

Following the bloom of the sakura, I stopped by the beautiful small town of Torahime in Shiga, Japan. It's full of rice fields, rivers, sudden hills dotted with shrines, and is bordered by both mountains and Biwako, Japan's largest freshwater lake. 


In this part of the country it's not uncommon to see the quaint 2-4 car train carriages, although timing their passing is tough as they only go by every 30 minutes or so, a far cry from the incessant arrivals and departures on Tokyo train tracks.


The weather was unfortunately quite hazy, and the plant life still quite brown, but cherry blossoms tend to lift even the dreariest of surroundings. There's a particularly lovely quiet avenue of sakura along Anegawa, with a view towards Mt Ibuki.