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Photographer Walks the Snowy Streets of Japan to Capture Wintry Cyberpunk Scenes

Street Photography in Japan

Urban street photographer Teemu Jarvinen is known for his cyberpunk style photographs of cities around Asia. Recently, he spent three weeks in Sapporo, the capital of Japan's northernmost island Hokkaido. Blanketed in snow, the city made the perfect canvas to create a series of intriguing cityscapes. As Jarvinen bundled up and set out to wander the city streets, he was able to capture the isolation and beauty of this wintery atmosphere.

The harsh weather conditions in Sapporo, where average winter temperatures are below freezing, make the city quite unique within Japan. Being in an area where snow is a regular occurrence proved to be quite challenging for Jarvinen as he set about his work. With the snowstorms came harsh wind, which kept the photographer on his toes. But in the end, it was worth it. “Shooting in the cold snowstorms with lots of wind is kind of a special challenge, so it's extra rewarding when it works out,” Jarvinen tells My Modern Met.

Given the temperatures, it shouldn't come as a surprise that the human presence in Jarvinen's photographs is often solitary. Figures trudge through the wet streets, umbrellas protecting them from snowfall until they're able to scurry indoors. The atmosphere vacillates from the bright, neon-soaked lights we're familiar with in Japan to dimly lit scenes where people appear as blurry silhouettes in the night.

Thanks to this unique atmosphere, Jarvinen's Sapporo photographs distinguish themselves from other pictures of urban Japan. It's a tribute to his dedication to photography and his willingness to push his style that Jarvinen was able to spend time in this part of Japan, which is far less photographed than other cities like Tokyo.

If you like Jarvinen's style, check out his set of Night Photography Presets.

Urban photographer Teemu Jarvinen spent 3 weeks in Japan's snowy northern city, Sapporo.

Winter in Sapporo by Teemu Jarvinen

He braved the weather to take stunning images of the city battling the harsh winter conditions.

Winter in Sapporo by Teemu JarvinenTaxi Driver in JapanSapporo Covered in Snow

From bright lights to dark alleyways, the environment is both beautiful and solitary.

Winter in Sapporo by Teemu JarvinenSnow Falling in SapporoWinter in Sapporo by Teemu JarvinenFoggy Bus WindowWinter in Sapporo by Teemu JarvinenBus in Japan

Single figures make their way indoors, protecting themselves from the snow with umbrellas.

Cyberpunk Photos of JapanPerson with Umbrella Walking Down Dark Street in Japan

Teemu Jarvinen: Website | Instagram

My Modern Met granted permission to feature photos by Teemu Jarvinen.

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Jessica Stewart

Jessica Stewart is a Contributing Writer and Digital Media Specialist for My Modern Met, as well as a curator and art historian. She earned her MA in Renaissance Studies from University College London and now lives in Rome, Italy. She cultivated expertise in street art which led to the purchase of her photographic archive by the Treccani Italian Encyclopedia in 2014. When she’s not spending time with her three dogs, she also manages the studio of a successful street artist. In 2013, she authored the book 'Street Art Stories Roma' and most recently contributed to 'Crossroads: A Glimpse Into the Life of Alice Pasquini'. You can follow her adventures online at @romephotoblog.

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