The Tiniest Garden – A Mini Comic in the Making

There are many ways to tell a story. I've been working on the story of my 90 days in Kyoto on and off for the last few years, stalling and starting again and again. Maybe there is a different way to get my experience across? In my time in Japan I discovered manga as a … Continue reading The Tiniest Garden – A Mini Comic in the Making

Day 25 – Planting moss and the mountains of Kyoto

After a day of working in heavy rain, a colleague and I climbed up the mountain behind the temple, just above the tea houses Kasa-tei (傘亭) and Shigure-tei (時雨亭). Kasa means umbrella and shigure means drizzle or autumn rain and is written with the kanji for "time" and "rain". Very poetic, I find. Both tea … Continue reading Day 25 – Planting moss and the mountains of Kyoto

Kaki-Shibu – 柿渋

I love Kyoto because it is the center for traditional craftsmanship in Japan. Over centuries, emperors, shoguns, religious and political leaders and tradesmen have lived here in beautiful houses and gardens, have held sophisticated parties and indulged in lavish banquets. They have invested in the beauty of Japan – sophisticated craftsmanship, a sense for balance … Continue reading Kaki-Shibu – 柿渋

Learning by Copying – how I met my Mr. Miyagi

In December last year, I found myself in San Francisco's Japan Town, walking towards my car with a stack of Japanese garden plans under my arm. What had just happened? I did not know… 40 minutes earlier – I enter the office of Y-san. It instantly takes me back to Japan. Fluorescent lighting, old gift … Continue reading Learning by Copying – how I met my Mr. Miyagi