This card features a pun I made up in Japanese… The Japanese word is “nombiri” or “carefree.” I wrote the “bi” (ビー、pronounced “bee”) part in katakana, with the rest of the word （のん and り） in hiragana (learn about the difference here).
The effect of this mix of syllabic characters is that, for those who can read Japanese, is that it really sounds and looks more like the English word “bee” to match the image.
The effect for those who don’t read Japanese is, I hope, a pretty picture of a flower with a bee on it, plus some scribbles below the image!
The etegami was painted after a visit to the National Arboretum in Washington, DC, in April 2015. I took this photo of a flowering quince (related to chaenomeles), with a bee feeding on it.
Oh Alison, how perfect! Between the photo, the flower, the bee, the etegami, the pun/wordplay, the cool link on katakane(so?) and the other writing form (I just went blank), I’m in bee-flower-art-language-Japan heaven. ❤️ Wish I could just look at art (& bees) all day, instead of going to work! And to think that I used to be afraid of bees! 😁 I know a sting would still hurt, but at least I’m not allergic. Thanks for your great post! ❤️