Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Ink Painting Class

Motto ink painting Yamaguchi JapanA few months ago Motto and I went to an ink painting class in Yamaguchi City. I'm blogging about it now.

It was one of the most fun things we'd ever done together. We woke up early and drove to the community center. The instructor was apparently a big famous ink painter who really wanted us to learn how to paint asparagus.

Neither Motto nor I really knew what was going on in the beginning. I didnt because I couldnt understand what anyone was saying, and Motto didnt because Japanese people are confusing. We had the wrong supplies. Instead of our bottle of ink we actually needed a black stick (charcoal maybe? condensed ink?) and a block to rub it on. We spent 10 or 15 minutes rub rub rubbing the stick on the block with a splash of water. Then, viola! Ink!

After the ink materialized there was a long explanation that bored me to death as I was itching to pick up my paintbrush. Enjoy the video below to see what I mean.

Finally we were allowed to start copying the teacher's technique to paint asparagus, eggplant, and cucumbers. The teacher painted an example on my paper and then a bunch of old ladies came over and told me it was really good.

After 5 minutes of painting vegetables Motto was doing quite well, creating things fit to be hung on our walls, but my veggies sucked and I was bored of them. So I started painting the teacher (I had been staring at him for 20 minutes with a paintbrush in hand, couldnt resist) and then the girl sitting across from me.

And I almost got away with it. Let's just say there was applause. But I'll never know if they were impressed with my paintings or with a foreigner who knows how to apply ink to paper. Motto acted like the whole putting my painting in front of the class and asking me to sign it and a famous ink painter taking it home as a gift thing didnt even happen. I'm not kidding. He didnt say a thing about it. Which leads me to believe it could have been an elaborate hallucination brought on by owing $18,000 in student loans to an art school.


Mrs. Konomoto said...

love the video - wanna see more eggplant.

red-handed said...

Motto's just old school, that's all.