Monday, August 22, 2016

late summer etegami

I missed my chance to send out the traditional mid-summer greeting cards (shochuu mimai) this year, but when I finally pulled myself out of the hot weather doldrums, I found I still had time to send out late-summer greeting cards (zansho mimai). These two types of summer greetings are explained in this post from three years ago. You still have time to send out your own!

The dragonfly etegami is from early July, when the dragonflies started swarming in Atsuta on the Japan Sea coast where I often go to paint. I was puzzled because it seemed far too early in the year to see dragonflies in such numbers, and I still don't have an explanation for it. The accompanying words say "It's far too early for dragonflies, isn't it?" The background colors represent the sunset because dragonflies are often associated with sunsets in Japanese children's songs, and Atsuta is particularly famous for its sunsets.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

keep those teabags

I love browsing the tea bag art I find on Pinterest, and have long fantasized about repurposing used teabags for etegami use. We etegami artists often play around with whatever paper product is at hand when inspiration strikes --- coffee filters, paper dinner napkins, paper cups, etc (as long as it's mailable)--- so why not used teabags?

But what I really like about used teabags is the tea stains on the paper. I haven't gotten as far as actually painting on teabags, but for some time now, I have been emptying out the used leaves, then drying, cutting, and flattening the bags for future use. My first experiment has been to recycle old etegami by pasting them over with these small sheets of tea-stained teabags . It gives them a vintage-style look, don't you think? Well, maybe not, but this is just the beginning, so bear with me. If you are already into teabag art, I'd love to know what you are creating.

The stained fold-lines of the teabags makes this look like a window frame.

The hawk is my husband's first attempt at etegami! I added the words and the teabags.