When photographer Miyoko Ihara decided to start documenting the life of her 87 year-old grandmother, Misao, for a photography book, you would think that the results would be pretty boring.

Fortunately, Misao finds a companion in Fukumaru (福丸), an odd-eyed kitten that Misao finds in a shed on her property. Misao, who apparently lives alone in her house in rural Japan, becomes inseparable from Fukumaru, and vice versa.

Not only do I love this photo series because it’s adorable, but it offers up a vision of rural Japan that you normally don’t get to see. Every day, this old woman continues to work the fields, even though she’s way past retirement age. It’s admirable that Misao still works so hard and really owns her land.

You can find the book, Misao and Fukumaru, here.

  • Kiriain

    That is adorable. I love it.

  • besterthenyou

    Aw, I saw this on the Reddit front page yesterday (the full album, not this Tofugu article!). :)

  • Mandarina

    I really love the picture with hanging daikon… And the last one is very sweet. Thank you =)

  • Tora.Silver

    1st and 2nd picture: What do they mean, “Odd-Eyed Cat”?
    I like the second one the best. It looks like Fukumaru is trying to help her work.

  • ZXNova

    Loyal kitty, so adorable. The cat makes the pic 1000x better.

  • Ines Tsukiyomi

    awww ^^

  • dekineeh na

    i love these! i’ve spent several weeks during two different trips to japan volunteering on rural farms- saw a lot of folks in their 80’s out weeding in the ridiculous heat – never saw a pair like these, though! a little piece of my soul will always be floating around in kansai inaka, i think…

  • Meg Datsameh

    How sweet~ <3 X3

  • HatsuHazama

    Would have been amazing pictures without Fukumaru, but with him… just wow.

  • zoomingjapan

    God, recently those two are featured everywhere, aren’t they?

    I’m a huge cat love rand I’m fascinated by this cat’s eyes! ^____^

  • Oli Marques

    seriously, how nice is this!?

  • Brittney Howdyshell

    Thank you for helping me confirm that I am a crazy cat lady! This made me tear up.

  • ジョサイア

    I want that cat xD

  • ezoomy

    Why is this site name “Tofugu” not “Torafugu” or “Yoritofugu”? Illustlation looks Torafugu. What is the meaning of Tofugu?

  • Sonia

    Beautiful…. so touching…. I loved seeing the pictures, and now look forward to the book! :)

  • Gakuranman

    Wonderful photography and concept!

  • Jon

    If I remember correctly, it’s supposed to be a portmanteau of ‘tofu’ and ‘fugu’, thus ‘tofugu’.


    Simply touching.

  • Irena Hleb

    thx for sharing this love with us…. simple and beautiful …

  • Helena

    This is so beautiful. Very nice photos.

  • Bruce Glaser

    awesome photos…love the subject matter of cat and woman being inseperable

  • Layla Natour

    amazing! love the granny more :*

  • Carmosinda Veloso


  • kittyfloss

    That is beautiful! ^-^

  • annaKubrick

    it really touch my soul. So so magical. Precious

  • Arielle

    Thank you! Super cute!

  • Manly man who loves cats

    Wow, pictures so sweet they made my heart skip some beats!

  • Paduka Seri Tuan GuGu

    I can cry now :’) I hope this wonderful granmama has a wonderful family as well other than the amazing cat!