In this print the Onmaya embankment is the scene of an intense downpour, as sheets of rain hit the ground with percussive force. So dense is the mist that only silhouettes are visible on the opposite shore. The man on the right holds an umbrella with the insignia of the print’s publisher, Yamaguchiya Tobei. Carrying three more folded umbrellas under his arm, he may be the agent of an umbrella rental firm hurrying to make a delivery. At the center of the picture is a man resigned to the weather—probably an eel catcher, to judge by his hooped pole. At left, three men huddle together under a single umbrella, which advertises a second business, the Yamatoya. A ferry is silhouetted in the water at the left, so the men may be coming and going from the landing.
Specific details of the weather and riverside sights would have pleased Edo print buyers. In Kuniyoshi’s hands, these intensely local subjects are portrayed in a hybrid Western style noticeable in the puffy clouds, shaded robes, and tangled, muscular limbs of the figures on the left.