Just doodling I suppose. The portrait is of a student of mine.
Chihiro’s study using water colors and trying to capture Minori’s likeness.
Here is a cup with one of my illustrations printed on it. Kawachi Artist Materials had a run of Artist cups for sale, and this was the illustration I submitted. I don’t know how many actually sold, but I got a free cup none-the-less.
I wrote the words using liquid acrylic by Holbein. Then I just fiddled around with some textures until I thought enough was enough. Maybe too much… but I didn’t want to start over. Don’t read it without adding a some emphasis on ‘Now.’
Chihiro’s work place, she works at an art supply store called Kawachi, recently wrapped up, well the final day is actually tomorrow, its first staff show. Here are the two painting/drawing that she submitted. They are not tributes to David Bowie, but, as she says, paintings done to process his passing.
After hearing about David Bowie’s death, perhaps as many others already have, my wife decided to draw a portrait of him. However, it is not a tribute to him, nor is it a ‘in memory of’ portrait, but instead is a portrait drawn as a way to process his passing. This was drawn without any prior sketching and rather quickly using Sakura Cray-Pas oil pastels and Caran D’ache wax pastels.
A triptych done by Chihiro using charcoal. She doesn’t usually draw abstract images, but these three here show her ability to easily explore abstraction. While they are a bit old, they are still some of my favorite drawings that she has done. Perhaps it is the unrefined quality of them that makes them attractive.
Here are two quick character sketches of two characters in our comics that we are collaborating on, which you can read here. They are Jun’s older sister, Claire, and Claire’s best friend, Andrea, both of which will appear many times throughout the story.
Claire is sort of tom-boyish, even more so than Jun and Andrea. A bit moody, and aloof at times, she is perhaps Jun’s only real friend.
Andrea is a true dork if ever there was one, which at times makes her rather obnoxious. Though more sporty than either sister, she never buys into the jock mentality and stays friends with them.
There are, perhaps, an innumerable amount of reasons as to why one should use a reusable bag instead of a plastic disposable bag when out shopping for whatever one might shop for. Yet it seems many forget that, even were one to agree with or know about these reasons, there are many who cannot afford the eight or so plus dollars to purchase one. Also the rhetoric employed by proponents of reusable bags often isolates or alienates people who might otherwise try to make the switch.
Indeed, it is a difficult switch in a lifestyle when so many of us have, and do still, grow up surrounded by convenience. Most don’t have the discipline to wean themselves from relying on convenience, more so if one finds themselves within poverty.
Even still, it is odd that I have rarely read about reusing the plastic disposable bags that reusable bags are supposed to supplant. They are still viable bags even after their contents are removed. Of course, they are more likely to have a tear form, or a sudden break that leads to catastrophe, as illustrated in this silkscreen by Chihiro, which she printed on a reusable bag. While not this reason alone, this reason is still a heavy contender as to why to switch to using reusable bags when shopping.
Fion is another one of our characters for yet another one of our stories that we are writing, and co-created with a neighbor of ours during our time in Portland. She is the protagonist of the story and is pampered by her father. This illustration is of her dressed up by her father for a photo shoot.
Chihiro is rather skilled with a crow quill pen and ink. It has always amazed me how she can get such thin, stable lines and bring out detail through the tedious and patient process of drawing line after line to create hair, shadow, or light. Here is an example of a drawing that she did using such a tool.
The process of character creation has always been interesting to me. I enjoy the slow process of sketching out an array of possible designs for the same character and whittling them down or merging them together to birth a new character. Then as the personality is refined, frequently so too is the costume and appearance of the character. Reiteration after reiteration
At least, this is what character creation seems to be to me, maybe not everyone. Indeed.
Below is a character drawn up and colored by Chihiro. She is a character from one of our many stories that we have thought up over the years. This drawing is one of many costume designs that Chihiro came up with for this character, dubbed Thousand Claw, and perhaps it is closer to a final design.
I looked back through some of Chihiro’s drawings and found a few gems, or perhaps images worth note. I thought why keep these hidden from view, so I will post these images from time to time until new illustrations are finished.
On my little music player full of digital memories of sound I have some recordings of a poet-writer friend of mine reading his prose accompanied by computer synth music. I have listened to these recordings many times before and counting, but never before with the intimacy afforded by headphones until today. Perhaps the closeness to the voice brought me to a new understanding that previously eluded me. It was just me and his voice, as though he was speaking directly to me, as though his voice and my thoughts were the same.
I sit on the train digesting his words over and over and over again in my head. The train reaches Osaka Station. The doors open and flesh begins to flood in and out through the doors. It is a transfusion of sorts. I am now walking through throngs of people. Words of love, for that is what they are, continue to pour through my headphones into my brain. I hear each word as an image unto itself. I know now that art is simply an expression of love or the desire for it.
No matter the facade an artist tries to hide behind it’s only when the artist ceases their posing, admitting to themselves that they too are lovely, that they too crave to be someone whom another loves just because, can they create something truly free from themselves. All other work is a mask that the artist wears to flee from the reality that they are. Yet, like these words that now reverberate in my mind perhaps the artist is unable to fully conceal themselves. A bit of them always escapes into the critical eyes and ears of others. Left open and alone to misinterpretations. Perhaps just as my ears have with these words.