25 January 2015




Our group exhibition in Tokyo was a great success. I can not say thank you enough to all who came to visit us and ,of course, to the wonderful seven ladies who made this exhibition possible.

This is my corner. I exhibited some original illustrations from the Mumsnet Book of the Animal Stories and my picture book idea as well as some printmaking and water colour artworks.   Lots of people laughed at how I struggled to make the rubber stamp of the hedgehog ball in snow.  Since I had to make four stamps to get the final one, I showed all the four on the table (in a chocolate box.  You know those stamps look very much like a piece of chocolate).  

Photos below are the other seven artists' corners.

Aki Kobayashi's corner.

Hiromi Kobayashi's corner.

Michiko Shigehara's corner.

Kumiko Seki's corner.

Hitomi Nakajima's corner.

Kisui Muto's corner.

Noriko Watanabe's corner.



12 January 2015

Model in Kimono

Today was my youngest cousin's coming of age ceremony. Since it is not an everyday opportunity to have a charming model in Kimono, I visited her house and painted her!

The kimono worn on this ceremony at the age of twenty is called Furisode, which has long sleeves and is only for unmarried ladies.

11 January 2015

A Walk in the Fresh Air


I walked along the Shiba river in Saitama. Both side of the river spread the flat crop land. It was very windy and reminded me of the long walk I did along the Ouse Washes. But the crop were mixture of rice and vegetable, such as daikon radish and Chinese cabbage, as well as trees for gardens and streets and in the distance, I could see high-rise building of Saitama Shintoshin and the mountain range of Okutama.

ツグミ(Dusky Thrush)

Below are some sketches from Jyogashima island on a Sunday. People were enjoying their time before the work or school start after new year holiday.


On the island, there is a cliff where the Japanese cormorants and the Pelagic cormorants spend winter.  A young peregrine was there, too.  


6 January 2015



わたしはMumsnet Book of Animal Storiesやイギリスで作った絵本の原画など物語的な作品、わたしにしては女子っぽい作品を集めて展示予定。有楽町の駅前なのでぜひ遊びにいらしてください。

◇◆◇  女視展〜それぞれがみつめる生命の息吹〜  ◇◆◇

I am going to exhibit my works at Yurakucho, Tokyo with seven other women wildlife artists!  The show will be held at the ground floor of Kotsukaikan in Yurakucho from the 18th to the 24th January.   


会期:2015年1月18日(日)〜24日(土) 11:00-19:00(初日は12:00から、最終日は17:00まで)
tel: 03-3212-3772(会期中直通)

3 January 2015



Roosting geese at Kabukurinuma lake.
I wonder how it would be to live next to these lakes and hear the sound every evening and morning. For people live there, it is a part of daily soundscape that occurs certain time of the day just like chimes from the town speaker or street sellers' music. People must miss them and/or feel relieved when the geese are gone in the spring and it suddenly becomes quiet. And it must be a wonderful way to feel the change of the season.  


Silhouette of the white-tailed eagle in front of the geese taking off from the lake for morning feed. What a gorgeous picture!


The Land of Geese

The main purpose of the Tohoku trip was, of course, to visit Izunuma and Kabukurinuma, the place for thousands of wintering geese. The old records suggest that there used to live lots of geese in Tokyo bay as well but after the big development and landfill, they are all gone and now we have to go either Tohoku area or the Japanese sea side to see them.  

We got to the Lake Izunuma earlier than the sunrise and waited.  It was freezing cold but the calls of the geese getting noisier and noisier brought us an uplifting feeling.   

Several minutes after the sunrise, at around 7:20, suddenly, they all started to take off.  It was just like Peter Scott's paintings.  The sun was already starting to warm us.
I come here to watch it only one morning in several years perhaps but it's a drama taken place every winter day for hundreds of years.   


Greater White-fronted Geese

I like watching birds feeding. It is not only because they are more likely to stay at a place and it is easier to draw but because I feel that they are not worrying about us.

Ural Owl 予期しない鳥との出会いは格別にうれしい。気づいたら道路脇にいたフクロウ。こんなにしっかりスケッチができてしまった!
He (or she) was sitting and sleeping on a pine tree at the roadside!
I picked a sketchbook, which my friend got me from India, and drew.  This paper didn't absorb water as easy as normal one but that made an interesting effect with brush strokes.


I went on a trip to Tohoku, north east part of Japan, in the end of last year. 

The first morning, we went to Ajishima, a small island an hour away by a ferry boat from Ishinomaki, expecting to see some seabirds.  

It's the island where a Russian expedition came by the order of Vitus Bering in 1739. There is a statue of Bering at the beach on the island and I later found out that it was made by Kate Thomson, a British sculptor!  I joined a project called "Postcard to Japan" after the earthquake disaster in 2011, which was organised by her and her Japanese husband from Tohoku, Hironori Katagiri.  Here is my postcard if you don't remember it!    

シノリガモ (Harlequin Ducks)

Ancient Murrelets

島内を歩いて網地港へと戻ったが、不思議と鳥影が少なかった。唯一声がするアオジですら警戒心が強くて、なかなか双眼鏡に入らない。 隣の田代島は猫が多く住むことで有名らしいけれど、網地島もそんな影響で鳥がシャイなのだろうか。それでもウソ(それもアカウソ!)を発見して、ちょっと満足。

Replica of San Juan Bautista
The original galleon, San Juan Bautista was made in1613 in Japan by Masamune Date with the help of Sebastián Vizcaíno.  It had a tiller, steering stick rather than a wheel.  It seems that it was after mid 17th century that a galleon had a wheel.

On this ship, Date sent a Japanese embassy accompanied by Luis Soteloto and Vizcaíno to Rome via Acapulco.   But when the ambassador finally got back to Japan after seven years, Japan was in the middle of the closure of the country.

2 January 2015

A Happy New Year!

2015 is the year of sheep and since we don't have sheep in the filed in Japan, here is a image from north of England. I love those black faced sheep and the undulating scenery. I hope I will see them this year. I wish you a great year!

My new year's resolution is to keep working and keep learning as well as to stop occasionally to think back and think forward!  Well, that's all I can try on this still-misty track of my life.  
除夜の鐘を撞きに行き、珍しくおみくじを引いたら「大吉」だって! 仕事は順調で願いは達せられるって! 謙虚にがんばろう。お正月にそういう気分になれたことが、何よりも大吉。