Hey, I’m Justin. I live in Tokyo and IKIMASHO! is an outlet for my creativity: writings, drawings and photography from Japan and my ongoing travels around the world.

It was nominated for Wanderlust’s Travel Blog of the Year – and the Japanese National Tourist Organisation recently added it to its list of ‘Great Japan Sources’ alongside The Japan Times and Lonely Planet.

As this site has evolved, so has its worldwide exposure. I now regularly feature YouTube Sessions from some of the best names in underground electronic music – and I have developed content for Children’s Broadcasting on the BBC. I am also the Street Art Reporter for Tokyo Art Beat, and a Tokyo correspondent for DAZED.

My background is in advertising. For seven years I worked as a writer and illustrator – becoming a senior creative on the Northern Ireland Tourist Board account. I still dabble in advertising as a consultant, but only if it is relevant to my interests. I was involved with this Tokyo Metro campaign, for example.

I come from a little seaside town called Bangor in Northern Ireland, and I love to travel.

I’ve been here: Australia / Belgium / Borneo / Brunei / Cambodia / Canada / Croatia / Czech Republic / Denmark / England / France / Hong Kong / Indonesia (Bali / Java / Sumatra) / Ireland / Italy / Japan / Laos / Malaysia / Morocco / Myanmar / Nepal / New Zealand / Poland / Scotland / Singapore / South Korea / Spain / Sri Lanka / Sweden / Switzerland / Taiwan / Thailand / USA / Vietnam / Wales

** I’d like to thank everyone for all the kind messages of support I received after being involved in the earthquake in Nepal in April. With the help of friends and family, I raised money which is now directly in the hands of the families I met during the disaster. Thank you. **

IKIMASHO! means “LET’S GO!” in Japanese, and pretty much sums up my approach to life.

Nice to meet you, hope you like the site.

Published work here.

Work with me here.

Justin / IKIMASHO!


  1. Hey man, are you interested in giving two aussies a tour of Tokyo Street art – best places – this saturday 🙂 If so, contact me please! via my wordpress or email c3146004@gmail.com. We have been living in Tokyo since Jan and seen lots of stickers as your know. but if u see big spraypainted ones we wanna go there too.


  2. Hi Justin.

    Nice work. Very usefull.
    Please let us know the Izakaya name in your publication : the secret’s out: ¥30 beers in tokyo.

    All the best,


  3. Hello Shin! I’m so sorry for the delay in my reply. The Izakaya name is Medaka and the sign is written in hiragana (めだか). I think the beer price is 110 now, but still super cheap!
    Address: 東京都新宿区歌舞伎町1-3-6
    English: Tokyo, Shinjuku-ku, Kabukicho 1-3-6

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