Sad cherry trees

Cherry blossoms in DC are scarce. A long cold winter seems to have scared them off. I did find a few this last week on daily walks to and from work, and I made some time this weekend to make some etegami. I found when I started painting my “control” of the ink and the color were rather off. Just like the cherry blossoms don’t seem to want to come out, I just wasn’t really feeling up to working with both sumi and watercolor.

In this first card, the first one I did this weekend, you can see the sumi is all over the place. Granted, I was painting on super high-bleed paper, but I could just tell I didn’t think I was going to play well with watercolors. So, I came up with the collage idea. Rather than paint the flowers, I used some marbled paper I bought in Florence, Italy, to create collages (paper purchased as Il Papiro). First I inked with sumi the branches, chose some poems or phrases, then cut up the paper and arranged the flowers.

This first card features a haiku by Basho and reads “Haru kaze ni fukidashi, Warau hana mo gana,” and translates to “Oh, the flowers that burst into laughter in the spring wind.”SpringWind.laughingflower.2.2014-04-05

Some of the cherry trees in DC are like the next coupld of etegami — bare branches save for a few lonesome blossoms. The first haiku is by Buson and reads “Sakura hitoki / Haru ni / Somukeru kehai kana,” translating to “A cherry tree / seems to neglect / the spring.”SabishiSakura.2.2014-04-05

The next one is a haiku also by Buson and reads “Sabishisa ni / Hana sakinumeri / Yamazakura.” It translates to “Maybe it bloomed / out of loneliness / — a wild cherry tree.”


The last two cards feature the title of a song I’ve used before, Sufjan Stevens’s “That Dress Looks Nice on You.” I post both of them because I’m not sure which I prefer. The second has a secret — I put flowers over some Japanese text I had originally put on the card. I just didn’t like my writing. It wasn’t much worse than the above examples, but just a little bit worse.Sakura.ThatDressLooksNiceonYou.2.2014-04-05



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