Tokyo Corner No.3 - Original Watercolour
A series celebrating the everyday urban streets of Tokyo – looking at the old and new, the peeling paint and cracked concrete, the buckets, bins, bicycles, container gardens, studios, shops and tiny restaurants, gas and electric meters, pipes and drains. Tokyo is always changing, and yet always the same, and with my studies in blue I hope to capture some of my experience of wandering its streets.
I am regularly inspired by the Instagram feeds that I follow – as I don’t live in Japan, it forms a source from which I can draw and paint, in addition to my own archive of images taken on trips there. This piece was drawn from a post from the feed of @hellosandwich (with her kind permission) who lives the dream of a Tokyo life that I long for.
For me Japan is not just about the achingly beautiful traditional scenery or hyper modern neon cityscape. A wander about (sometimes just one street away from a main thoroughfare) will reveal many hidden alleyways and small arcades where the tiniest of businesses are surviving. Decaying signage, bicycles, buckets, brooms and plants often make an appearance. Not only a visual experience, these scenes surround you with the sounds of everyday life – distant voices, the calls of crows, clinking cutlery and glasses, electronic noises and music.
This low-key restaurant with its hand written menu cards (and a whiteboard with specials of grilled barracuda and dried mackerel) just begged to be captured in blue…
Original watercolour and ink illustration on Saunders Waterford archival watercolour paper.
Titled, dated and signed in pencil on the reverse, with 'nakamura' [中村] stamp in red pigment ink.
Paper & Image size: approximately 285 x 280 mm or 11 x 11 inches.