There are hundreds of sculptures at the Toshougu Shrine from Nikko (Yomeimon Gate only has over 500), and there are some interesting facts about some of them.
A good example is the sculpture from Kamijinko, the Upper Sacred Warehouse: it was made after a painting by Kanō Tan’yū and it represents two animals, called “imaginary elefants".
Why “imaginary"? Because the painter had never seen an image of a real elephant, so he made the painting guided by… a description from a book. And this is the result:
Click on photo for higher resolution:
Lens: VR 18-55mm F/3.5-5.6G
Focal Length: 55mm
Shutter Speed: 1/160s
ISO Sensitivity: ISO 200
Yesterday’s Japan Photo: