Every year, I go to this festival with my family.
It is famous for being the first festival of summer in Oita prefecture.
But it is also strange because it begins in the rainy season.
And this year, it rained every night of this 3 day event.
Luckily, the rain was only heavy on the first day.
In spite of the rain, the atmosphere was wonderful.
And to be honest, I actually welcome the rain because I love the bright lights of the stalls reflected in the wet and dark roads.
And it gives me great joy to paint such scenes.
At the shrine there is a traditional Japanese performance called Kagura - which means "God Entertainment" and is supposed to be a very ancient dance.
This involves very strangely dressed men in masks dancing with swords and even a dragon that spits out fire - which I think is actually a firework.
By the side of the stage are a group of musicians playing flutes and drums.
At first my daughter was frightened of this performance but that didn't last. Gradually she began to enjoy it more and more.
So we had to stay until the end of the show - which took a long time.
I had wanted to go home earlier but in the end I was happy to have stayed and enjoyed the performance with her.
She made the right choice for both of us.
What festivals do you like?
Thanks for reading and God bless you, Gareth.
In 2014, I first got the idea to paint this festival in the rain.
Below is what I wrote in 2014/07/10
It's the first festival in the county and also the worst timed one in being in the middle of the rainy season and yes on the second day it rained buckets.
But this year I've really gotten into painting rainy scenes.
So despite my wife's advice, she's a lot more sensible than me, I cycled there and took some photos and came back totally soaked.
My wife had a good laugh.
But it was worth it. The next day I painted a picture from one of the photos I took and was really happy with the results.
You can buy prints of these paintings below.