Wood Block Prints

April 28, 2015 § 4 Comments

Going through some old stuff and came across “Wood Block Prints.  Selected UKIYO-E Adopted for Commemorative Stamp Issue, Printed by Kyoto Hanga In Tokyo” from Vancouver’s Expo 86.

Ukiyo-e cover

The Publisher, “Kyoto Hanga-In Tokyo Main Office” writes, “These 6 Ukiyo-E pictures were hand-made by pure woodblock printing technique.”

First: Utamaro Kitagawa’s (1751-1805) Beautiful Woman Plying a Glass Flute.  (15 impressions)

Beautiful woman playing a glass flute

Next:     Hokusai Katsushika’s Work (1759-1849)  Mt. Fuji Viewed Through Ocean Waves (13 impressions), also known as The Great Wave.

Mt. Fuji Viewed Through Ocean Waves

The rest are, I believe, Hiroshige Ando’s Work (1804-1855)

Moon and Geese  (12 impressions)

Moon and Geese

Nihonbashi Bridge  (18 impressions) One of the 53 stations of the Tokaido Highway)

Nihonbashi Bridge

Yui (16 impressions)  (One of 53 stations of the Tokaido Highway)


Kyoto (15 impressions) (One of 53 stations of the Tokaido Highway)



Discovering the footprints

April 28, 2015 § Leave a comment

Along the riverbank under the trees, I discover footprints!

Even under the fragrant grass I see his prints.

Deep in remote mountains they are found.

These traces no more can be hidden than one’s nose, looking heavenward.

second verse of “Bulls” by Chinese Master Kakuan, twelfth century

Postcards from the 1940’s

April 21, 2015 § Leave a comment

I came across some 1940’s postcards from Belgium that I thought I’d share with you.  Please pardon the quality as they’ve been collecting dust for seventy years.

Postcard 1941 Aa postcards 1941Bb Postcards 1941Cc

The writing on the cards is flemish and roughly translates as “fortunate new year”.

On the Mountain: Question and Answer

April 21, 2015 § 4 Comments

You ask me:

                Why do I live

on this green mountain?

     I smile

     No answer

               My heart serene

On flowing water


                    quietly going

                    far away

          another earth

This is

          another sky

No likeness

               to that human world below.

Li Po

Digital Landscape Painting 0127

April 14, 2015 § Leave a comment

Thought I’d share a digital painting done with Topaz, a program I’ve been experimenting with.  They’ve recently added Topaz Impression to their collection which enables you to process a photograph as a painting.  Of course, if you want to get the full effect you have to process the photo with Photoshop, adding texture layers, contrast, saturation, etc., before running it through Topaz.

In this digital painting I combined two rather nondescript photos of a pond and a tree, then ran it through Topaz Impression.  I ran it through about five times using different painting effects, each time placing the result as a layer over the processed image in Photoshop.  I set the blending mode for each layer to selectively bring out only parts of it before adding the next layer from Topaz.  This way I could keep what I liked about each layer as I developed the image.

Not saying this is my best effort, but wanted to give you a look at what one can do with photos that would otherwise be discarded.

Landscape 0127

When your bow is broken

April 9, 2015 § Leave a comment

Interestingly, “The Book of Mu” cites the following as a waka poem written by an old Japanese Zen Master.

When your bow is broken and your arrows are exhausted,

There, shoot!

Shoot with your whole being!

The Book of Mu P. 92

While an internet search has the following line written by Roger Zelazny, an American writer of fantasy and science fiction short stories and novels.

“When your bow is broken and your last arrow spent, then shoot, shoot with your whole heart.”

Roger Joseph Zelazny (May 13, 1937 – June 14, 1995)

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