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OKIC News
News from Okinawa Karate Information Center.
OKIC Newstopics
Newstopics from Okinawa Karate Information Center.
Dento Karate
Okinawa Dento Karate Shinkokai.
Ryukyu Shimpo
Okinawa, a Japanese newspaper, local news.
Visit Okinawa Japan
Official Travel and Tourism Information.
Blog by Chris Willson.
Chris Willson is a British ex-pat photographer, videographer, and travel writer based in Okinawa.

OKIC News


News from Okinawa Karate Information Center

OKIC Newstopics


Newstopics from Okinawa Karate Information Center

Dento Karate


Okinawa Dento Karate Shinkokai. Society for the Advancement of the Traditional Okinawa Karate.

Visit Okinawa


Official Travel and Tourism Information.

Ryukyu Shimpo


Ryukyu Shimpo – Okinawa, a Japanese newspaper, local news

Blog by Chris Willson Okinawa


Chris Willson is a British ex-pat photographer, videographer, and travel writer based in Okinawa. He specializes in documenting Japanese festivals, martial arts, and life on Okinawa both on land and underwater. His images often appear in newspapers, magazines and guidebooks.

  • Chieko Toma – Goju-ryu Karate & Ryukyu Dance
    by travel67 on 2. September 2020 at 7:53

    Chieko Toma is a master of Ryukyu dance. On Sunday I had the chance to photograph her performing in traditional dance costumes. The next black and white costume comes from Haebaru Town and I believe is worn for performance of the folk dances, rather than the court dances. The next outfit is the karate gi with a hakama-style piece over the lower half. This was worn to perform the go shin no mai dances of self defense. As well as a master of Ryukyu dance, Toma Sensei is a master of Goju-ryu karate, and a student under Tetsuhiro Hokama Sensei. If you look at the behind the scenes shot, and […]

  • Shuri Castle Reconstruction
    by travel67 on 19. July 2020 at 6:42

    On July 15 2020 I visited Shuri Castle to see the progress with reconstruction. As you approach the castle, nearly everything appears to be as it was before the fire. The Shureimon gate is intact, locals were praying at the Sonohyan-utaki, and the stone walls and archways of the Kankaimon gate all bore no evidence of the disaster. At the ticket booth in the Shichi-nu-una courtyard you can purchase a discounted entry ticket, but it only as you pass through the Houshimon ticket gate into the main courtyard you are hit with the vast change to the beloved castle. Where the main Seiden once stood […]

  • Intangible Cultural Asset Holders in the Field of Okinawan Karate and Martial Arts with Weaponry
    by travel67 on 28. May 2020 at 9:58

    On May 19th 2020 six Okinawan Karate Masters were recognized by the prefecture as an Intangible Cultural Asset Holder in the Field of Okinawan Karate and Martial Arts with Weaponry. I am honored to have photographed them all for the Karate Masters Portrait Project over the past 8 years. Congratulations to Iha Sensei, Kikugawa Sensei, Maeshiro Sensei, Nakahodo Sensei, Iha Sensei and Takara Sensei! I’m also happy to announce that episode 8 in the YouTube series Sensei: Masters of Okinawan Karate is now online. I’m really proud of all the work that went into this episode, the team that […]

  • Coronavirus Schedule
    by travel67 on 25. April 2020 at 14:28

    Due to the coronavirus all sessions and projects scheduled for before May 9th are postponed until a later date. Stay safe, stay home, we’ll get through this.

  • Sensei: Masters of Okinawan Karate #7 Tsuguo Sakumoto
    by travel67 on 17. April 2020 at 5:22

    Tsuguo Sakumoto, 7 times consecutive world champion, and coach to 9 world champions including Arata Kinjo, Takuya Uemura and Ryo Kiyuna. He is 9th-dan in Ryuei-ryu karate. Ryo Kiyuna is one of Japan’s best chances to win a gold medal at the Tokyo 2020 (2021) Olympics so Sakumoto Sensei is more than ever a very busy man. Luckily he liked the portraits of him I shot in 2014 so we managed to get to interview him last September for the Sensei: Masters of Okinawan Karate Series. You can learn more about the series, and even how to support is here: […]

  • Hidetada Ishiki at Itokazu Castle Ruins
    by travel67 on 13. March 2020 at 15:01

    Before shooting studio portraits of Ishiki Sensei and his son for the Karate Masters Portrait Project we visited Itokazu Castle ruins to get some location shots. Ishiki Sensei studied kobudo with Shinpo Matayoshi alongside students including Gakiya Sensei and Yamashiro Sensei. Studying exclusively with Matayoshi Sensei meant they delved deeper into the different weapons, so along with the more common bo (staff) and sai, they learned weapons such as nunchaku, sansetsukon (3 piece nunchaku) and the mini sansetsukon (which Masakazu Kinjo Sensei once described as the Saturday night special). […]

  • Sensei: Masters of Okinawan Karate – Doug Perry
    by travel67 on 3. March 2020 at 9:49

    In the latest video in the series I’m making about karate, 83-year-old, 10th-dan Shorin-Ryu, Doug Perry talks about his life in the Marine Corps and martial arts, and his love of Okinawa. Also includes a conversation with his son Colonel Jason Perry.  Thank you to all the sponsors and supporters you’ll see listed at the end of the video I couldn’t do it without you! Please get in touch if you’re able to help with this project! https://travel67.com/the-karate-masters-portrait-project/sensei-documentary/ Currently going through the final checks for two more videos. Will release […]

  • Yanbaru – Visit Okinawa
    by travel67 on 2. March 2020 at 8:07

    A month ago I spent a weekend up in the Yanbaru forests to write an article for the Visit Okinawa website. Okinawan photographer Nirai was there to take the photos and video of my adventures for the website, so it was a really interesting to be on the other side of the lens. I was also able to get a few snaps over the weekend, when I wasn’t mugging for his camera. I interviewed Kikuta-san many years ago for Okinawa Living magazine, you can read the article here. You can find out more about his birdwatching tours and his artwork here. I didn’t mention it in the article, but we came across […]

  • Karate Masters Kanji Uechi and Sadanao Uechi
    by travel67 on 2. March 2020 at 6:16

    Uechi-ryu is one of the main styles of Okinawan karate. Literally translated it means Uechi style, its name coming from its founder Kanbun Uechi (1877-1948). At 19, Kanbun Uechi went to Fuzhou City in China to study martial arts. He studied a style known as Pangai-noon and after 13 years returned to Okinawa. Many years later he began teaching Pangai-noon karate in Japan, and in 1940 the style was renamed as Uechi-ryu karate jutsu. Kanbun Uechi’s son Kanei Uechi (1911-1991) was the second generation of the style. His grandson Kanmei Uechi (1941-2015) was the third generation. And today his […]

  • Sefa-utaki – Visit Okinawa
    by travel67 on 16. February 2020 at 14:34

    The Visit Okinawa website has an article I wrote about Okinawa’s Sefa-utaki, and a promotional video they made of me exploring this UNESCO World Heritage Site. Great experience working with the VisitOkinawa.jp team.