Monday, August 15, 2022

Day 3648: Celebration.

"Watching": marker & ink on newspaper 

Want music?

Click here: Devon Cole, Witch.
then click back on this blog tab or here to listen as you browse, or not?


2GN2S ...

Asako Kitamura, Japan’s Only Female Nebuta Float Artisan

In Japan, summer is the season of fireworks, beautiful flower fields, and eye-catching festivals held across the country.Giant floats paraded down the streets of Aomori last week for the Nebuta Matsuri, one of Japan’s most heavily attended summer festivals. 

This festival for which Aomori is most famous takes place in Aomori City during the first week of August. It was held for the first time in three years after a long covid-induced hiatus. A total of 18 floats featuring scenes from scroll paintings depicting warriors and mythology lit up the heart of the city. Pictured (top) is a float by Asako Kitamura, Japan’s only female Nebuta float artisan. 

  The main procession of the festival consists of large internally lit floats depicting kabuki scenes that are wheeled around wildly from side to side. 

Members of the public are free to join in as long as they are wearing the required haneto costume.
But before that can happen, there is the designing and building of the floats. The floats are all handmade and take several months to construct. And once the initial design is decided upon, the construction process can largely be broken down into five steps.
Step 1: building the skeleton: Massive amounts of wood and wire are intricately tied together to create the skeleton. Not only does the skeleton create the final form but it also supports the may lights that go inside the float. Typically from late May to early June.

Step 2: attaching the paper: The next step is covering the skeleton with skin. Paper skin, of course and once this step is complete the skeleton will never be seen again. Given how large the floats are (5 meters high, 9 meters wide) it’s a time-consuming process that lasts through mid-June.

Step 3: creating the outlines: Once the exterior skin is all attached, outlines are added to the structure and the initial design begins to emerge. Another part of this process is adding wax to areas that are intended to resist paint. This process usually lasts until early July.

Step 4: color painting: The floats are now more than halfway done and they begin to come to life with color. Working with her team, Kitamura hand-paints the entire structure. It’s a combination of brush strokes and spray paint with newspaper used as a way to shield certain parts from the paint. The August festival is now approaching and the painting should be done before the end of July.

Step 5: lifting the structure onto the float: After some final touches to ensure the facial expressions are just right and the support joints are in place the paper structure is lifted onto the float and secured. A few electric tests and the float is now ready for showtime.

Asako Kitamura was born in 1982 to Takashi Kitamura, a 6th generation Nebuta float artisan. At the age of 25 she decided to pursue her father’s footsteps after seeing his work and being inspired by it. In just 5 years she became an officially recognized Nebuta artisan in her own right and has been contributing to the festival ever since. See her on Instagram.  

A very short video, here

A mostly silent roommate.

The past five days, Granddog, Laker (12) has been boarding at Grandma's. His alter ego, Zoey (4) was boarded at Dogtopia, where she can socialize, which is her forte. Laker, not so much.

On Thursday, WonderWoman and her  friends played golf, Heidi their social director, decides on the theme for each month. This month was "Back to School" and they dressed accordingly. Cute?
WW and Superman had a lot of stops to make during their four day stay.

They got to see all four Grandhunks a couple of times, and met GH#2's rescue kitten, Moola!

On Saturday, WW picked me up, we took care of errands. At lunch someone got the salmon salad & the other got a fish taco?Who ate what?

We went to order a new mattress for me, long overdue. Then a pedicure.
Sunday the Superheroes picked up Laker, and Zoey, stopped to see family and ...

were on the road.

Short and very sweet!

A cute 3-minute video, Cat & Birdhere.

Just because ...
Collared Puffbird


Smiles for Monday ...






                             Thanks for coming by today


Sunday, August 14, 2022

Day 3647: Thread and Paper.


"Disjointed": junk mail collage, digital.



Want music?

Click here: Hekuto Pascal, Fish in the pool.
then click back on this blog tab or here to listen as you browse, or not?


2GN2S ... 

Artist Floor Giebels 

has endless embroidery possibilities ...

Floor is one artist who goes beyond the traditions of embroidery by incorporating photography into her hoop art. Her pieces feature figures with their backs turned towards the camera, looking out at picturesque landscapes. Areas including the ocean, grassy fields, and forests remain as printed images while the characters are enhanced with stitching.   

A key element of Floor’s stitching is her subjects’ hair. This is where she uses the fuzziness of the thread to her advantage. Floor employs the thread painting technique to convey the shadows and highlights on a braided coif or long loose hairstyle. Placing certain hues side-by-side creates a realistic effect that complements the photography it’s stitched on. The results are a unique form of mixed media art. 

She offers a class called Intermediate Embroidery: Getting Creative with Printed Fabrics.

A short Floor Giebel video here.

A quick step-by-step ...

Working in a journal page on right.


I started with a 4x4" square, and nothing planned. (piece 1)

I added piece 2 of torn junk mail, using glue-stick & a brayer.


 Piece #3 is also torn junk mail, left-center.

Piece #4  is torn junk mail, upper-right.

The 5th piece is a horizontal strip I cut from another collage, digitally. Also, the entire piece is color-corrected digitally.
5 pieces of paper saved from the landfill?

A fun 1-minute video, courtship dance, here.

Just because ...
Northern Pygmy Owl


Smiles for Sunday ...





                             Thanks for coming by today