"This picture was taken to fulfill my visual imagination. Mountain Fuji covered with mist, seen through red leaves, and surrounded by people canoeing. The story behind this scene was like a dream that I will never forget.
The picture was taken at Lake Kawaguchiko. Before shooting, I checked weather forecasts and found a perfect spot under the maple tree which had turned fully red. On that day, I woke up before the sun had risen and rode a bicycle to the marked point. However, I arrived and found that 3 Japanese photographers were there before me, standing with their settled tripods, and my chosen position was gone. Yet, none of the photographers could start taking picture because the mist still covered Mount Fuji. I then continued trying to find a great point of view with nice composition of red maple leaves and the volcano.
It took me quite long before settling at one spot because spaces were all reserved with other photographers. I almost gave up and thought I would come back another day instead. A few minutes later, one photographer moved out, leaving me a great opportunity to suddenly take that location. As soon as my equipment was well setup, Mount Fuji gradually appeared and stood out amongst the mist. I thought to myself that something was missing from the scene. Luckily, a large group of tourists canoeing along the river arose in the landscape to eventually fill the frame. I waited a little longer for a perfect combination of various elements. I took a number of shots of that scene and finally achieved what I had planned for. It is quite worthwhile and will be kept as one of the most precious moments for me."
Read full interview with world photography organisation: https://www.worldphoto.org/th/node/3833