Kako painted in the realistic, or Shijo School of Japanese painting. He was one of the leading practitioners of this tradition during his time. He served as the director of the Kyoto Municipal School of Fine Arts and Crafts and was one of the most influential artists of his day.
The tradition of painting waterfalls in Japan dates back to at least the 12th century. Waterfalls are important within native Japanese Shinto beliefs as the dwelling places of Kami, gods or spirits.