Omedeto Rainbow (52 Make-up Week 17)

I’m in Japan for the 25th anniversary of the Aichi branch of my karate school – more on that later. But I wanted to bring the head instructor here a small gift.

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I occasionally play around with Japanese calligraphy; I have no skill or instruction, but it’s fun. I’ve given a few pieces as gifts. To give one of my kindergarten scrawls to someone in Japan would be really cheeky — unless, I thought, I could do something interesting with it.

A rule for art: if you don’t have technique, have a fresh and creative approach.

I had the idea of taking a wide brush and loading different colors of paint along it, using a palate knife. This gave an interesting rainbow effect. The first one came out a little too dark, but the second effort had a pleasing burst of color to it, I thought. So I matted it, and had my students sign the mat. I gave it to our chief instructor as a little remembrance of his friends in Maryland. In the middle of a party, he didn’t get the chance to unwrap it so I don’t know how it was received, but I think the point was made. When making art as a gift, it is the thought that counts.

It says “Omedeto” – “Congratulations.” The word is usually written in hiragana, one of the two phonetic scripts used in Japanese, as opposed to kanji, the Chinese ideograms.

"Thank you for sharing this. It is very inspirational."

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