PHOTOHOPE 2021 – October 10, 2021

PHOTOHOPE – October 10, 2021

A Community Photowalk Across Tokyo for Suicide Prevention and Mental Health

Totem Pole Photo Gallery to Sensoji via Tokyo Tower

UPDATE: Thanks for coming everybody! Amazing event! Full report coming soon. In the meantime, fill out the PHOTOHOPE 2021 – Feedback Survey where you can also upload images!

HOT OFF THE PRESS! PHOTOHOPE 2021 NEWSLETTER with all the Photowalk details in both English and Japanese 🙂

Quick Guide:

1. Register to take TELL’s Step up Challenge here:
2. Let us know you’re coming by signing up here (or form below):
3. Be at Totem Pole Photo Gallery before 10am on October 10th, 2021:

PHOTOHOPE – Let us know you’re coming!

* indicates required
Newsletter Signup!


“PHOTOHOPE” is an effort to use photography passion as a means to do goodwill. It was born from the “Photohoku” effort, an ongoing volunteer effort, started in response to Japan’s Earthquake and Disaster of 2011 that uses the act of photo-giving as a means to help those in need.

PHOTOHOPE’s primary focus will be to bring attention to mental health and well-being, to de-stigmatize mental illness, and to support organizations dedicated to suicide prevention. This will be achieved by assembling photographers for various public activities aimed at raising both awareness and funding for aforementioned causes.


An anonymous Photohoku supporter and beloved member of the film photography community tragically succumbed to suicide recently, leaving behind a collection of film and cameras. This collection of film was entrusted to Photohoku with the hope it be put to positive use, and aligned with Photohoku’s and the beneficiary’s values, hence: PHOTOHOPE.


Building on past Photohoku efforts at Tokyo English Life Line’s (TELL) Tokyo Tower Climb of 2018 and 2019 for which we rallied photography friends to participate by offering an instant photo experience for all who joined, we aim to re-interpret our participation and method in the following ways:

  • Host the first annual PHOTOHOPE Photo Walk with this year’s participants taking TELL’s  Step-Up Challenge.
  • Distribute free film (from our beneficiary’s collection) to all who participate.
  • Assemble, walk, and photograph in groups across Tokyo ~21,081 in honor of those who lose their lives each year to suicide.
  • Encourage photographers to be public about their participation and with their photos to bring attention to mental health and well being, and to TELL’s services.   

How to Participate – It’s easy!

  • Rally some friends to walk with!
  • Go to TELL’s Step Up Challenge and each register (Â¥1500):
  • Let us know you’re coming by signing up here (free):
  • Bring proof of registration to Totem Pole Photo Gallery before 10am on October 10th to receive free film (see below)
    10月10日10amまでにTotem Pole Photo Galleryに行き、TELLから受信したメールを受付で見せ、フィルムを無料で受け取る (フィルム詳細は以下)

Note: If you want to participate as a checkpoint volunteer, let us know
注意: 参加者としてではなく、運営ボランティアとしてお手伝いいただける方がいれば、その旨お知らせください。

Walk, Talk, Photograph!

Starting Line: Depart from Totem Pole Photo Gallery starting at 10am
スタート地点: Totem Pole Photo Gallery (新宿) から10amに出発

Checkpoint: Picnic a Shiba Koen near Peace Lantern under Tokyo Tower
経由地点: 東京タワーが見える芝公園の平和の灯付近でお昼Finish Line: Sensoji
ゴール地点: 浅草寺

Finish Line: Sensoji
ゴール地点: 浅草寺

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Totem Pole to Shiba Koen Park: 1~2 hours – Bring your own bento
Totem Poleから芝公園: 約1-2時間 – お弁当持参か途中でTake Out!
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Shiba Koen Park to Sensoji: 2~3 hours
芝公園から浅草寺: 約2-3時間
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Secret mini bonus prize at the goal point!

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Free Film

A beloved member of the film photography community tragically succumbed to suicide not long ago. Sadly a giant a huge stock of film was left behind and entrusted to us to put to good use. We HOPE this will be a fitting tribute to the Photographer’s life and legacy.

Note: All participants can receive “several” rolls of film (it will depend on the total number of participants.) There will be both 35mm and 120 film formats. Consider all the film deadstock and for “experimental” purposes. If image results are critical, best to use fresh stock! Have a backup plan if you need!

ご家族や友人から、彼女の残した膨大なフィルムを何かいいことのために使って欲しいと連絡があり、私たちが譲り受けています。 今回彼女のフィルムを使わせてもらうことで、一人のフォトグラファーが生きた証とレガシーにつながればと願っています。

注意: 参加者全員”数個”のフィルムを無料で受け取れます (フィルムの数は、参加人数によって変わります)。35mmと120mmのフィルムを用意していますが、長期保存されていたため、デッドストックとお考えください。あくまでも実験的な仕上がりを楽しんでください! 出来上がりにこだわる方は、ご自身でもフィルムを用意するなどご検討ください。

Walking Notes:

21,081 steps is about 14km – it’s a looong walk! Participants needn’t walk the full length. Go your pace and distance. Walk some or the entire length. Start at TPPG or anywhere along the way. Train or taxi the final stretch as needed. Have fun. Focus thoughts on mental health!

21,081歩は約14kmと長距離になります。ゴールはあくまでも目安なので、無理せず、自分のペースと可能な距離の範囲でお楽しみください。スタート地点もTPPGではなくても大丈夫(フィルムのお渡しはできません)。必要であれば途中で電車やタクシーを使ってもOK! メンタルヘルスと癒しの旅なので、とにかく楽しんでください!

Camera Notes:

Please bring your own cameras. If you don’t have a camera, borrow one! Don’t have a film camera? Shoot digital! Use your phone! Anything is ok! Best to avoid tripods and cumbersome rigs. Go for light and easy! You’re walking 20,000+ steps!

ご自身のカメラをご用意ください。もしフィルムカメラがなければ、カメラ好きに借りてください! それも難しければ、デジタルカメラでも、携帯カメラでも! どんなカメラでも大丈夫です! ただし三脚などは避けてなるべく身軽に動けるものでお願いします。二万歩以上歩くのですから!

Covid Notes:

We wish and expect this to be a safe event. PHOTOHOPE is implementing infection prevention measures based on the Guidelines for the Prevention of the Spread of the New Coronavirus Infection of Tokyo. Please be mindful of distancing, and please minimize risk by masking up! Also, If you have a temperature of 37.5° or higher, or if you have any physical symptoms, please refrain from participating and take care of yourself! Thank you. If you don’t wish to take these precautions, please support us from home 🙂



Thank you to Totem Pole Photo Gallery for providing our starting line. We hope to have more partners joining us. If you’d like to get involved, send a message to (Eng) and/or (JP). 

Join the Facebook Event or Linkedin Event and let us know you’re joining us! Download Press Release (this page) as .pdf.