Capturing Time-Honored Craftsmanship: An Insight into Sakai's Eco-Conscious and Artful Knife-Making Tradition

As an Osaka-based photographer, I had the incredible opportunity to photograph Sakai’s master knife craftsmen in October 2022. This unique assignment came from a client based in Australia, who was eager to showcase the exceptional skills and dedication of these artisans. In the initial email I received, the client emphasized their goal of capturing the essence of this centuries-old tradition, while ensuring that the resulting images would be both clear and compelling.

Forge, Hizukuri

My journey into the world of Sakai knife-making began by carefully planning the shoot, taking into consideration the client’s objectives and the specific requirements of the project. I consulted with the craftsmen to determine the most suitable locations and moments to capture, as well as the techniques and tools that would best represent their expertise. This meticulous preparation allowed me to fully immerse myself in the rich culture and history of Sakai, gaining a deeper appreciation for the dedication and passion of these remarkable artisans.


Osaka, JAPAN




Hotaka Matsumura

Sakai, OSAKA

The final images from the shoot not only showcase the unparalleled craftsmanship of the Sakai knife-makers, but also serve as a testament to the beauty and intricacy of this time-honored tradition. The vivid and detailed photographs provide an intimate glimpse into the lives of these skilled artisans, revealing the incredible precision, patience, and pride that go into each handcrafted knife. By sharing these captivating images, we hope to inspire a greater appreciation for the artistry and dedication of the Sakai craftsmen and celebrate the enduring legacy of their exceptional work.

Mr. Tanaka