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The ninth of my images of Japan collection October 8, 2006

Posted by urbanblue in Images of Japan.

Am I up to nine already? Blimey.

Anyways. On to the business in hand, which is “purikura“. Purikura is a shortened form of “purintto kurabbu” (Print Club), the fad that just doesn’t seem to be dying out. You step into a plastic curtained booth, insert your 400 yen, and a manic little animated character with a voice like a smurf on helium appears with techno eurobeat blaring in the background. Before you know it the character begins its ultra quick “San..ni..ichi..GO!” countdown and you’re being snapped from all angles; above, below, from the side, from behind, who knows where else. You needs your wits about you if you don’t want pictures of your backside or worse. After that you have 90 seconds to jazz up your picture with special effects and stamps and glittery nonsense by using a metal pen and touch screen system. All the meanwhile the manic little anime creature is screaming at you that time is running out and the eurobeat gets faster and faster. And then it’s all over and you’re asked to wait outside for your prints. Phew.
Needless to say it takes a bit of getting used to. Many a poor sod has come out of one of those booths in need of a stiff drink, but is instead rewarded with a sheet of tiny pictures of themselves looking gormless and lost and covered in pink lovehearts. But my good friend Be and I have braved the booths over the years and have mastered the art. Here are a selection from years gone by. I’d like to say I was drunk when we did them, but I’ve already used that excuse for the monkey page, and I don’t think it’ll wash a second time.



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