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Wednesday, 18th May 2016
In Japan Travel News,

Woodblock prints provide inspiration for new Japanese passport design

The foreign ministry in Japan has announced plans to issue passports in an entirely new design, but its inspiration goes back centuries.

Pages within the documents will be based on wood prints made of Mount Fuji hundreds of years ago, reports the Business Standard.

A total of 24 landscapes will be selected from Katsushika Hokusai’s 36 views of Mount Fuji series, NHK reported.

The ukiyo-e or woodblock artist was prominent in the late 18th century to early 19th century and this particular series of Japan’s highest peak is his most famous.

Each of the 36 prints depicts the mountain from a different angle and during various weather conditions to produce a diverse collection of viewpoints.

Page designs based on the woodblock prints will act as the background for visas, entry and exit stamps collected as the holder travels between countries.

The designs of passports are updated regularly to help prevent forgeries and intricate motifs and patterns aid in this.

A team of experts put together the proposal to use the woodblocks in a move that will see the older cherry blossom design no longer used.

On top of helping to stop possible forgeries, the team believe that the views of Mount Fuji also better portray Japan and its landscape.

The plan is yet to be formerly approved, but it is believed that this rubber stamping is likely to occur today (May 18th).

If all goes ahead as planned the new passports should be ready for 2019, when they will be issued to those requiring new ones.