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If you’ve been following the progress of this collaboration you may remember the mysterious, magical forest scene from Yoko’s previous entry (partly pictured below, or you can click here to see it in more detail).
notebook (amsterdam) – detail (artwork by yoko hayashi)
I was so enchanted by this mystical forest I wanted to create a protector for it, a guardian spirit if you will. She appeared in the guise of a tenacious, green-eyed owl.
late night prototyping
ear tuft/eyebrow, work-in-progress
notebook (amsterdam) – completed double page spread
She looks rather flinty, but she’s really quite friendly. That’s just the outward manifestation of her resolute determination to protect all those that call the forest home from all those that would cut down, kill, consume & catalogue.
ear tufts folded for transit to tokyo
notebook [amsterdam] denotes the notebook that started its life in Amsterdam, and notebook [tokyo] denotes the notebook that started its life in Tokyo
At last, I’m back with new instalments from the long-distance sketchbook/notebook collaboration I’ve been working on with my friend Yoko Hayashi.
It’s always a thrilling day here when a MUJI notebook sized package, postmarked Tokyo, lands in my letterbox!
In my previous entry (which you can see here) I’d left Yoko with a rather awkward, untidy-back-of-embroidery page to work with…
I was intrigued to see what she’d done with this page. I knew it would be beautiful and inventive, but I wasn’t prepared for just how beautiful – there was actual gasping when I turned the page to reveal Yoko’s most recent entry…
notebook [tokyo] – detail (artwork by yoko hayashi)
This fine lace-like filigree evokes a constellation of delicate celestial bodies or magical snow crystals.
Although they are painted they have an enticing three-dimensional quality – like real openwork – that makes one want to reach out and touch them.
notebook [tokyo] – double page spread (artwork by yoko hayashi)
The village beneath this constellation (itself, it would seem, born of fallen stars/snow crystals) exudes a peaceful otherworldly calm, and that deep stillness that almost always accompanies abundant snowfall.
notebook [tokyo] – detail (artwork by yoko hayashi)
Soft, substantial snow came to Haarlem a few days after the notebook arrived. Coincidence or enchantment? I favour the latter…
notebook [tokyo] – all artwork by yoko hayashi
notebook [tokyo] denotes the notebook that started its life in Tokyo, and notebook [amsterdam] denotes the notebook that started its life in Amsterdam
All artwork in this post is copyright yoko hayashi
Treasures found pressed between the pages of an old sketchbook…
digital doodling pressed petal patterns…
(they remind me of these cyanotypes)
As September slides into October, heralding the rapid advance of autumn, here’s a quick round-up of the colours of my Dutch summer…
being away at peak seedling planting time meant no vegetable growing adventures for me this year, but my mini rock garden, and the allium bulbs I planted in the autumn last year, put on a very good show!
august mid-morning moon | laser 3.14‘s perceptive brand of street poetry
gira loves this beautiful blue shweshwe duvet cover (made by my super-talented mum)… i suspect it might be because he knows how good he looks on it :)
soft pink early morning views from the studio
leiden is rocking the pink too!
lotus @ hortus botanicus, leiden
gingko | venation
~ and you don’t get greens like those above, without a bit of the below ~
street art in leiden | stained glass window designed by willem bogtman, haarlem, 1920’s (as seen at the ‘living in the amsterdam school: designs for the interior 1910-1930‘ exhibition at amsterdam’s stedelijk museum)
everyone loves the sun(flower)
rainbow cherry toms, ready for slow-roasting
blue-eyed visitor at my studio window | radiant brickwork, amsterdam
brick gables, haarlem | beautiful berries (buds? anyone know what this fascinating plant is?)
to the beach!
kite-flying | fallow deer grazing on the verdant dune grasses at zandvoort
grey is a colour too
au revoir summer!
~~~~ down to the water’s edge ~~~~
buffels bay, cape point, june 2016
We’ve been having a late-summer mini-heatwave here in Haarlem… so I’m cooling-off by revisiting some pics from a winter’s walk on my favourite beach. Buffels Bay, at the southern edge of Africa, is a very special place and I always try to make a pilgrimage to it when I’m ‘in the neighbourhood’. It’s also always a rich source of colour and pattern inspiration. These photos were taken on a moody, wild winter’s day (a great kind of day for a beach visit, imho!) in early June this year, but you can also see the bay – in all its brilliant blue glory – on a bright spring day here > …
graceful gull & cuttlefish bone
gelatinous, calcified(?), luminous
rugged rock pools | vibrant, variegated colonies
scanning the horizon
more than one way to get where you’re going…
life on mars
looking north towards the paulsberg, die boer and judas peaks
looking south-southeast towards cape point, situated on the southerly edge of africa and sometime meeting place of the atlantic and indian oceans *
* Africa’s southernmost point is Cape Agulhas, ±150 kilometres east-southeast of Cape Point. The Indian and Atlantic oceans meet at the point where the warm Agulhas current meets the cold Benguela current – a point that apparently fluctuates between Cape Agulhas and Cape Point