Saturday, May 27, 2017

made-to-order drink coasters


I've been busy this month with made-to-order etegami coasters.

One customer wanted a specific set of American songbirds, a subject I am not familiar with. Another customer wanted a specific set of flowers that were favorites of her mother in the UK.

Custom orders are time-consuming and materials-consuming, because I always end up rejecting so many completed pieces before I have a set that I am satisfied with and not ashamed to accept payment for.

But work like this forces me to research and compose and paint a lot of subjects I wouldn't ordinarily attempt if left to my own whims. And I do so love to learn new things!

8 comments:

  1. Wow, as usual your work is very charming. I hope you have some time to translate the kana. Unfortunately, my own ability is limited to "yama." Great work!

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    1. Thank you for reading the post, Carol! The kana writing on the flower coasters is just the Japanese version of the genus name of each flower. I did the same thing with the birds just before sending them off to the customer.

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  2. Great idea. I love scientific names. I never really thought about how they might be represented in other characters. I assume they are brought phonetically into Japanese?

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    1. That's a reasonable guess, and I'm certainly no expert on the subject. But judging from observation, they are not phonetic representations of the Latin scientific names, which would be impossibly long in katakana. But many do appear to represent the meaning (not sound) of the Latin names.

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  3. Fascinating. Thanks for sharing your reply!

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  4. Beautiful work s always Debbie! ♥

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  5. Your work is, as always, delightful and shows great talent. I am glad that you wrote about the time taken to be satisfied with a piece before sending it on to its owner. As you said, materials and time are usually far beyond what the non artist would expect to finish work. Artists have to be harsh editors of their own work, discarding those which are not considered by them to be top quality.

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    1. Thank you Rona. I wonder, though, in my case if is more a tension between the art I make to gift and the art I make to sell. One of the principles of etegami is to never be dissatisfied with, nor discard, any piece one produces as long as it has been painted from the heart. But when it comes to producing art to sell, that principle goes out the window. My policy is to produce only as much sellable art as I absolutely need to cover the costs of materials and postage of the vast majority of etegami I produce to gift to people. Etegami is not meant to be judged-- not by the artist and not by others. Neither are etegami and business meant to be combined. It is hard sometimes to be faithful to that principle.

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