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Images from the 'Skyfall island' - Michael Gakuran goes urban exploring

By dpreview staff on Nov 16, 2012 at 20:55 GMT

Skyfall, the latest James Bond film, is topping the box office charts around the world and wowing audiences with its cinematography. It includes a sequence set on a deserted island - modeled on Hashima, an abandoned former coal-mining island off the coast of Nagasaki, Japan. Dpreview member Michael Gakuran has written a blog post about his experiences on the island - filming for a Discovery Channel documentary and, earlier, being smuggled onto the island under cover of darkness to perform a little urban exploration (Urbex).

In the two blog posts, about the use of the Hashima in Skyfall, and his urbex visit to the island, he discusses the experience of visiting the islands, and illustrates them with the photographs he captured.

 Michael Gakuran - Gakuranman.com

Comments

Total comments: 41
LaFonte
By LaFonte (Nov 20, 2012)

Maybe someone knows, why the buildings looks like demolishd and everything is broken up - is it by weather or was there a vandalism?

0 upvotes
Gakuranman
By Gakuranman (Nov 21, 2012)

Almost certainly the weather. The island experiences numerous typhoons and constant exposure to the harsh, salty sea air. A year or two ago the brand new walkway for visitors was damaged by a storm, so it's no wonder the old reinforced concrete buildings are bare skeletons of what they once were.

0 upvotes
Fox Fisher
By Fox Fisher (Nov 18, 2012)

Awesome job! I always wondered if that place existed for real, now I know!

1 upvote
DanCee
By DanCee (Nov 19, 2012)

me too.. !

0 upvotes
KTSFotos
By KTSFotos (Nov 18, 2012)

Very nice pictures, in special the TV beside the phone. Very very cool.

0 upvotes
Ulfric M Douglas
By Ulfric M Douglas (Nov 17, 2012)

Hey You iz now famous Gakuranman!
(Hope you make some dosh from this)

2 upvotes
Gakuranman
By Gakuranman (Nov 19, 2012)

Not from this post on Dpreview, but like most of us, I'm always interested in licensing my photography :).

0 upvotes
Nissin
By Nissin (Nov 17, 2012)

If you're really interested in Gunkanjima, you should try to find the book by Saiga Yuji who first photographed the island and introduced the iconic TV. It's an awesome set of images.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
gsum
By gsum (Nov 17, 2012)

Great photos. But I wonder why they bothered to go all that way. London contains many similar urban hellholes that are within a short distance of the Twickenham studios.

1 upvote
WilliamJ
By WilliamJ (Nov 17, 2012)

The grass is always greener on the other side... it's well known !

1 upvote
Peiasdf
By Peiasdf (Nov 17, 2012)

I wish Kowloon Walled City was "preserved" like this island.

4 upvotes
Reilly Diefenbach
By Reilly Diefenbach (Nov 17, 2012)

Homo Sapiens, the oversized locusts!

3 upvotes
Paul Farace
By Paul Farace (Nov 17, 2012)

You're always welcome to check out! I tend to look at the positive impact humanity has made in addition to our shortcomings. Remember, God made the world for mankind and gave us dominion over it. We have not messed it up too bad, despite what some radical environmentalists would have you believe!

2 upvotes
Reilly Diefenbach
By Reilly Diefenbach (Nov 17, 2012)

What positive impact would that be?

2 upvotes
JavierDiaz
By JavierDiaz (Nov 18, 2012)

What is "god"?

2 upvotes
pixelcollector
By pixelcollector (Nov 20, 2012)

Paul, can you back that up with facts, please?
Your condescending 'remember' is a nice touch.

0 upvotes
adrian mctiernan
By adrian mctiernan (Nov 21, 2012)

I guess if you know that God is real, it is not condescending. God is our Heavenly Father, and we lived with him before this life, and if we make a success of living right here, we will live back again with him in the next life. I am blessed or fortunate enough to know this. To find out, just live the commandments and pray to have him show you. Paul may have done this already. That knowledge is available to all, and is a vital part of life, really - most helpful. He keeps prompting us in our lives, and to listen to the promptings and so advance in knowledge is a sublime thing. Not everyone seems to understand this presently

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Uwe Steinmueller
By Uwe Steinmueller (Nov 17, 2012)

The TV shot is really great.

0 upvotes
AbrasiveReducer
By AbrasiveReducer (Nov 16, 2012)

Great photo op. I just wish they would referain from "staging" things, like the chair or the telephone perfectly positioned next to the TV, as if these were natural occurances.

2 upvotes
WilliamJ
By WilliamJ (Nov 17, 2012)

True ! When one has the opportunity to deal with very good "photographic commodity" it's a pure waste to direct it in order to make it look sexier. Because sexier than sexy is often or gross or burlesque !

0 upvotes
Gakuranman
By Gakuranman (Nov 19, 2012)

As far as I am aware, the television set has been resting there for a long, long time. The telephone next to it is also found in pictures from at least 4 years ago in photos taken by a Japanese photographer.

0 upvotes
Tizzio
By Tizzio (Nov 16, 2012)

Fantastic read, thank you.

0 upvotes
Princess Leia
By Princess Leia (Nov 16, 2012)

Skyfall - best Bond movie ever..

4 upvotes
Ron Poelman
By Ron Poelman (Nov 16, 2012)

Another ad,
really, DPR ???

3 upvotes
Simon Joinson
By Simon Joinson (Nov 16, 2012)

what is it an ad for?

5 upvotes
Maverick_
By Maverick_ (Nov 16, 2012)

Another Ad? What do you think this site is, not-for-profit? This is an Amazon-owned major portal. They can run all the ads and banner ads and promos that they please. This is a massively profitable and popular website with millions of visitors a month.

They have found a relevant human interest story that ties in with the current top box office movie. It's a very smart move.

6 upvotes
a Michael
By a Michael (Nov 16, 2012)

Hey Ron,
Since ads are so bad, are you going to pay for the hosting, web design, and professional reviews?

4 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 16, 2012)

Ron, as soon as I saw that island on Skyfall I thought it was a fascinating location and that it provided an intriguing place for photography. It may not interest you. You may perceive it as an ad. To me, and to others, it seems interesting, and that's what this website's for.

6 upvotes
Ron Poelman
By Ron Poelman (Nov 18, 2012)

It's an ad for a movie franchise, Simon.
No prizes for guessing which.
Yet another carefully targeted, seemingly innocent , cross platform product placement.
A technique which is starting to permeate pretty much any and every media product nowadays.
The issue is, when do we start not trusting the content and reviews here ?
Pay for an independent DPR ?
I wish. Would have been happy to.
But, that horse bolted a while ago.

0 upvotes
Gakuranman
By Gakuranman (Nov 19, 2012)

I have no idea what Dpreview's arrangement is regarding profiting from timely posts, but for reference Richard Butler contacted me to ask permission to link to my website and photos.

1 upvote
Zig Ermeson
By Zig Ermeson (Nov 19, 2012)

Ron, sites like dpreview do not seem to fullfill your expectations. There are pay sites you might want consider instead. Like Sean Reid's site. Weather an ad or not, I would not have missed this artile.

0 upvotes
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (Nov 19, 2012)

As with ALL news on dpreview - we did not receive a single penny from anybody to run this post.

I saw the movie in question and thought the island was interesting. A friend I saw it with found Micheal's site and I thought it would be interesting to other people too. When I realised it was a blog by someone I'd seen contributing to our forums, that sealed it. That's why it's featured.

0 upvotes
NarrBL
By NarrBL (Nov 20, 2012)

Ron, I think that Skyfall as a film needs no advertising like this.

It's something of a mature piece, also, and you might like it.

Yes, there is too much advertising. And at the same time, maybe not enough of some better kinds. Art is advertising, for its own conceptions and ideas or ideals; have you considered this?

Comment edited 25 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
adrian mctiernan
By adrian mctiernan (Nov 21, 2012)

Pickey, Ron - it just seems relevant to something happening now. I saw the film last week, and wondered where the place was. Now I find it is a real place, and where - I am very pleased this item came up. I would worry if this site did not 'advertise' cameras - It has saved me a lot of money by me reading up on various cameras, seeing the actual pix they take, and being able to compare. My last four cameras were chosen after some intense reading here. Personally, I hate Which? mag, because they won't sell just one magazine, but you have to susbscribe to it, and I am too poor to afford all the stuff it advertises. I suspect Ron, that you are becoming a jaundiced over-read consumer, but I am sure I have seen some great photos you have taken, though I would hesitate to class your work as product placement

0 upvotes
RoelHendrickx
By RoelHendrickx (Nov 16, 2012)

Looks like the dream of any Urban Explorer.
Sadly, it will now probably be run over by eager photographers anytime soon...
Roel

0 upvotes
silverbluemx
By silverbluemx (Nov 16, 2012)

This island IS the dream of Urban Explorers, thus most of them already know about it.
And, access is already forbidden except for tours (that don't really go deep on the island). Sadly I missed it when I was in Nagasaki in june.

0 upvotes
Nishi Drew
By Nishi Drew (Nov 17, 2012)

Yeah, plenty have tried through conventional means to explore and it's not easy. As for being run over you can find plenty of material already, and movie(s?) taken place here. It's not like there's really any place left on the planet that hasn't been "run over" by photographers too...

1 upvote
Timur Born
By Timur Born (Nov 17, 2012)

A bit strange how the Bond film told the audience that the island was kind of "just left" while everything obviously fell apart quite some time ago.

0 upvotes
JaFO
By JaFO (Nov 17, 2012)

Compared to the age of our planet a couple of decades might as well be 'just left' ;)

0 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 18, 2012)

Linguistic issue. The "just left" didn't refer to time in that context. It meant they "simply" or "merely" left, i.e. without thinking twice.

0 upvotes
darktiger
By darktiger (Nov 19, 2012)

I wish I could watch the series... I do not see it available to watch online or available for purchase anywhere :(

0 upvotes
Total comments: 41